If winter has arrived where you live, then that means cold nights, dark mornings and rainy days that make walking our dogs a little less inviting.
It’s important to really make an effort and brave the elements to give your pooch some exercise and stimulation, but some days truly are better spent indoors. So what can we do when the weather is less than ideal to exercise our dogs and keep them out of trouble?
Training is a really good way to stimulate your dog and burn some energy with mental exhaustion, and the great news is it can be done in the comfort and warmth of your own home. Start with simple skills such ‘sit’, ‘shake’, ‘roll over’, ‘lay down’ and always remember to reward with treats or praise. If your dog has already mastered these you can graduate to more complicated commands such as ‘play dead’, ‘speak’ or ‘crawl’.
If this doesn’t quite get rid of enough energy then you might like to consider some indoor agility training. All you need are some witch’s hats (although any object will do) and a hallway and you have yourself an agility course for your dog to run through. If you want to be really tricky use your arms as a hoop and teach your dog to jump through it at the end. There are numerous instructional videos and ideas on the internet to help you, so go on, get creative.
If indoor training isn’t really your thing, but you still want your dog to burn off some energy, then how about a play date? Having another dog in the house will help keep them entertained as they run around playing with each other. A word of caution however, as with humans, not all dogs get on, so choose a companion that you know your dog likes and they’ll have a great afternoon of play.
Finally, if neither of these ideas tickle your fancy then there is nothing wrong with curling up on the couch with your dog and watching your favourite movie. Bonding time is very important, and dogs love to veg out too (in moderation of course).