We all like to play – the more fun we can add to our lives, the better – and the same applies to your dog.
Playing should become part of your dog’s daily routine as it will help your four-legged friend to stay healthy. For one, you will do much to improve your dog’s fitness levels, and secondly, by playing games that you know will make him happy, you will benefit his mental health too.
When should your dog play?
Your dog won’t want to play all day, of course, but you should still make time for some play activities in occasional bursts. This includes your dog’s exercise time, as you could play simple catch or fetch games with him when you’re in the garden or if you’re walking him around the park.
As dogs get very bored when they’re alone at home, you should also leave toys for your pooch to play with when you’re out of the house. Check out these dog toys, for example, and consider adding some to your home. This way, you will reduce the chances of your dog getting bored and chewing up your furniture or shoes.
What games should you play with your dog?
How you play with your dog is up to you and your pooch, as you will both find things that you enjoy doing together. However, mix it up a little to prevent boredom, as you will both appreciate the play session more.
Care needs to be taken, however. If your dog has a tendency to nip you, it is advisable to avoid games that require too much contact near his mouth. We are thinking of tug-of-war games with a piece of rope or towel, for example. Such games can also create problems for your dog’s underbite, as pulling at something while they’re holding it can result in your pet’s teeth shifting to a problematic position. There are some tips here for fixing your dog’s underbite, but you should try to play games where such problems can be avoided.
Fetching games are safe to play, assuming your dog isn’t of the lazy variety (otherwise you will be doing the fetching). Frisbee games are also a good idea, as your dog will be encouraged to run and jump to catch the frisbee. This can be great for his fitness levels. Here are some other games to play with your dog, which are both fun and useful as training tools.
Where should you play with your dog?
Safety is key so always find a place where your dog won’t be harmed. Playing in the garden is usually fine, although you do need to contain the area so he isn’t able to run onto the road. Playing in the park is also fine, although if your dog has a tendency to run away or attack other dogs, you might want to avoid open areas until he has learned to follow a few basic commands.
Playing indoors with your dog is perfectly acceptable too, although you should remove any breakable objects before embarking on any boisterous game. Here are just some of the games you can play with your dog indoors, but look for more ideas online.
Dogs like to have fun, so be sure to incorporate plenty of play opportunities into your dog’s life. He will get a lot of enjoyment from the games you plan for him, and you should benefit from having more fun too!