What a time – between the coronavirus pandemic and an unexpected rainy week in Los Angeles, our worlds have momentarily paused. While things around us feel different, one thing remains the same: your dog is in need of some exercise.
If your dog is growing restless after a week of working from home with you, we have come up with four easy ways to fend off boredom and get in some mental and physical activity.
4 Awesome Ways to Exercise Your Dog Indoors
Play Puzzle Games
Puzzle games are the perfect tool to keep your dog occupied for 15 to 30 minutes. Pull one out when you need to jump on a zoom meeting or wrap up an email without having your dog pawing at you with “sad” eyes. Here are some of our favorites:
- Hide-a-Squirrel: Tiny stuffed squirrels hide in a “tree,” and your dog digs them out. Dogs become obsessed with this game and the little squirrels. It’s also one of the only puzzle games that is played without a food incentive.
- Star Spinner: Dogs sniff out treats hidden in different compartments, and then use their paws to push the layers around to get to the treats. We recommend this game for our beginner gamers.
- KONG: A classic game for all dogs. Hide treats or freeze peanut butter inside the hollow, indestructible rubber feeder to provide your dog with some tasty entertainment. We also are huge fans of the Kong Wobble.
Remember, never leave your dog alone with puzzle games (they are not meant for chewing).
Make an at-home agility course
Turn your house into an agility course. Why not! What else are you doing?
Rearrange your furniture to be an obstacle course and lure your dog through it with some treats. You can also use plastic cups, hula-hoops, storage totes, empty boxes, whatever! See how fast it takes your dog to get the hang of the course. This activity combines mental and physical exercise, and your dog is sure to be tuckered out after a few rounds.
Introduce your dog to scent games
Dogs have a powerful sense of smell and even simple scent games are engaging and improve confidence. Start off by introducing your dog to the “shell game.” Take five plastic cups and put a treat under one of them (don’t let your dog see which one – they are smart like that). Then ask them to “find it.” They might be confused at first and need some help, but once they understand the game, you can move the cups further and further apart and even start to hide them behind objects.
Take Mini Training Breaks
Break up your day by giving your dog 15 minute training sessions. According to science, taking frequent short breaks throughout the workday has been shown to increase productivity. So while you’re re-charging, your dog can use their brain and get the attention they need.
Not sure what to do? Try Dogo, a daily trainer that has over 70 tricks and exercises. Perfect for puppies, new dog owners or to maintain training. Dog trainers are certified and from all over the world. Our very own Partner Trainer, Sylvia Wes, is a Dogo ambassador.
While indoor playtime is great, it’s still important for your dog to get out into the world for fresh air, exercise, and socialization. Sign up for a Hike Assessment at app.fitdog.com.