5 tips for keeping a dog busy

Dogs are animals that need to exert themselves to feel fulfilled. How to occupy them intelligently? We tell you everything!

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Every owner should walk their dog, play with it, teach it tricks and spend as much time with it as possible. When the owner lacks time to take care of his dog, the latter can become bored, which can lead to a change in his behavior or his mood, and even he alth problems such as obesity.

Fortunately, there are tips that can keep a dog better occupied, entertained and stimulated. Here are our five tips in this article to keep your dog busy even when you're short on time.

Keep him busy with toys

Dogs are playful animals, both with their masters and with other dogs or alone.To occupy your dog when he is alone or when you are busy, offer him toys. These can be specially designed for dogs or everyday objects that the dog can adopt as toys.

Favor toys that push the dog to exert itself to obtain a reward. This is the case, for example, with chew toys in which you can slip some kibble or a food that the dog particularly likes. These toys do not let the food escape without effort on the part of the dog, which extends the time during which the dog is busy playing.

Also think about linking the toy to your presence in the dog's mind. Play with this toy with your dog as often as possible so that he associates using the toy with your presence and attention. By chewing this toy, the dog feels less alone when you are away, it then behaves better and causes less damage in your interior.

You can also consider giving him an occupation toy such as a kibble or treat dispenser that is only dispensed after the dog has handled the device.

Give him a bone to gnaw on

In addition to toys, you can give your dog a bone to chew on. The animal can spend long hours gnawing on its bone, because it is a need for it. Chewing bones or similar objects allows him to maintain good oral hygiene while having fun.

So offer him a raw and fleshy bone of a size related to that of his jaw. If you don't have a bone, you can replace it with a dried pig's ear, a deer antler, a gnawing bone bought in a specialized store or a knotted rope coated with peanut butter or mash.

To tire him out by making him do sports

Physical activity is essential for dogs, it allows them to spend their energy, stay in shape and sharpen their natural instincts.It is therefore important to occupy your dog by making him play sports. If you don't have time to take it out during the day, let it accompany you during your outdoor sports sessions. If you're a runner, your dog will enjoy running alongside you, with or without a leash, depending on the location.

However, be sure to adapt the type of physical activity to the size and age of your dog.

During these sports outings, try to play as much as possible with your dog and offer him exercises to reinforce his learning.

Stimulate your sense of smell

Dogs have one of the most powerful senses of smell in the animal kingdom. It is a sense that they use in all their daily activities, to orient themselves, to recognize their masters or their congeners, to feed themselves and even to play. Stimulating your dog's sense of smell can therefore be a great way to keep him occupied.

To play with your dog by stimulating his sense of smell, you can use certain games such as hiding kibble in various places in the house and garden and encouraging him to look for it. You can also use some toys designed specifically for this purpose. The search mat or “snuffle mat” is a mat with many large fringes and pockets in which you can hide kibble or other smelly objects. The complexity of the mat requires the dog to exert effort to find the object, which can prolong the game long enough to tire him.

Teach him new tricks

Take advantage of the time you're at home with your dog to teach him new tricks. Try your hand at dog dancing or dancing with the dog, which is an increasingly popular discipline among masters. This dance is quite easy to learn and consists of coordinated dance steps between the dog and its master.

You can also reinforce your dog's learning by perfecting basic notions such as "lying" , "sitting" and teaching him new instructions such as "dress up" or "fetch" .

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