While each dog is unique, Kim Krug, DVM, veterinary behaviour resident at Animal Behavior Clinic in Portland, Ore., says there are some fundamental needs. “All dogs must be able to sniff, explore and interact with nature, and make decisions about how they move and interact with their environment,” she says.
“Walking with a human supervising your every move is neither exercise nor enrichment.”
Instead, Krug suggests considering what your dog would do if the leash were removed. “We’ll be best served if we can find ways for kids to engage in that type of exercise,”.
Check out our collection of entertaining workout ideas to keep things interesting and get your dog moving more. (Plus, you’ll have more fun together!)
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5. Play a Game
Speaking of fetch, it also works well on land! And, if you have some spare space in your home, it might be a good option for indoor workout. Tug-of-war and puzzle toys, as well as a game of hide-and-seek in which you conceal little treats or bits of kibble about the home for your pup to sniff out and snarf, are excellent choices for rainy days.
6. Sign Up for Sports
There are a variety of sports available for your canine athlete, ranging from flyball to skijoring. Look into what your neighbourhood has to offer that might suit your dog’s interests and talents.
7. Create an Agility Course
You only need two buckets, a broomstick, a large cardboard box, a blanket, and some garden stakes to set up an agility course in your own backyard. In no time, your dog will be jumping, weaving, and crawling!
8. Teach Your Pup New Tricks
Brain exercise is still physical exertion. Clicker training can help you reach your goals while keeping your dog happy, active, and motivated, whether you want to teach your dog a new behaviour like sit, stay, or roll over.
9. Try Scent Training
Scent training is great fun for a dog’s brain and allows them to perform one of their favourite things: use their nose. It’s simple to get started with this enrichment exercise, especially with activities like box search, shell game, or muffin tin puzzle.