Keeping your dog entertained while you’re at home is a challenge on its own and when you’re away it can be exponentially more difficult. Here are a few fun and creative ways to occupy your pup when you’re out and about.
One of the tried and true tricks to keeping your dog occupied while you’re away is to provide a stuffed Kong. You can change it up each time with different treats and stuffings. Read our blogpost on different things to stuff in a Kong for ideas.
Make a snuffle mat to provide your dog with the opportunity to sniff and search for hidden treats. It basically consists of a rubber mat with strips of fleece tied to it the loose ends create hiding spots for the treats. Check out Pinterest for ways to make your own snuffle mat.
For the uber smart dog try out a puzzle toy. It might take a little training for your dog to understand how to use it, but it will be well worth it! Not only will your dog be rewarded with a tasty treat or two, but it will exercise his/her mind.
If you have a dog that enjoys sniffing and finding things try hiding treats around the house. You can hide anything from dog biscuits to Kongs and even hearty fruits like blueberries. Just make sure that you check the hiding spots when you get home for any unfound treats.
Turn on the TV or Radio
Sometimes the sound of the radio or tv will help keep your dog entertained. The sounds will stimulate your dog’s brain and help soothe or calm them. I like to leave classical music on for Watson and Sherlock while I am gone.
These are great for dogs that eat too quickly, but also great for keeping dog entertained. Simply fill them with tasty treats and food such as peanut butter, cream cheese, premium wet dog food, or even canned pumpkin. You can find all kinds at pet stores and on Amazon, or just try using a plastic container lid.
Self Fetching Toy
If you have a pup that loves to play fetch a self fetching toy might be for you. There are a few different models out there and can provide hours of entertainment for your pooch both outside and inside. You’ll probably have to train your dog how to use it, but once you do it’ll be his/her new favorite gadget!
Rotate Your Dog’s Toys
Only put out a few toys at once and rotate them every day or so. This will help keep your dog interested in their usual toys for longer. Plus, he/she will get excited when the “new’ toys come out.
Get a Pet Cam
There are all kinds of pet cameras out there these days. Find the one that works for you and your budget and getting talking to your pet. Some even have the ability fling treats and it’s a great way to check in on your four-legged pals while you’re away.
Make a Busy Bucket
If you have a dog that would like a challenge but you don’t want to spend a ton on a new toy then try making your own busy bucket. Simply take a plastic or aluminum pail, put some treats in the bottom, then put a toy your dog likes on top of it and surround the empty space with a hand towel. This will promote problem solving and reward your dog with treats for figuring it out.
Bored dogs can be destructive and who can blame them. It’s no fun being at home alone! Hopefully some of these ideas will help keep your dog entertained the next time you have to leave him/her home alone.