Activities For 6 Month Old Dogs

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Introduction

You're little pup is now 6 months old - how time flies! You may be wondering what activities are good for a six month old dog and the answer is that there are so many things your young one can do. At this stage, your dog is still considered a puppy and they are likely full of energy. They are also probably very comfortable around you and starting to get adjusted into their home. While your puppy may be sleeping one minute and sprinting around the next, you should find productive ways to keep them busy and learning in between these puppy energy bursts.

Trick a Week

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Any Day
Free
Easy
30 min
Items needed
Treats
Activity description

You may be aware that your puppy needs physical activities built into their day to day life but what about mental stimulation? While daily exercise is great, a puppy also needs to exercise their mind! A puppy is primed for learning new tricks as their brain is young and fresh and they (most likely) don't have too many bad habits ingrained in them yet. Teaching your dog a new trick or behavior each week is the perfect way to instill good habits and also have fun with your dog! So grab that box of treats and get ready to teach your six month old puppy some new tricks!

Step
1
Make a list
Make a list of tricks and behaviors that you would like to teach your dog. This can be anything from "sit" to "roll over" to "no barking at the door constantly". Write down your goals and be sure to start with the more simple tricks and work toward the more challenging ones.
Step
2
Treat and train
Begin teaching your six month old puppy the first new trick or behavior. Arm yourself with your dog's favorite treats to achieve the most success! Show your dog the trick in conjunction with a verbal command. Reward your pup when they successfully do what you are asking.
Step
3
Practice
Practice your dog's new trick daily if not multiple times a day. Make teaching and rewarding your dog a daily part of life. Once your pup has mastered one skill, continue to practice and enforce it even while you are training them to do another new trick. Practice and consistency are key in teaching your puppy any behavior or trick!
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Grooming Fun

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Any Day
Cheap
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
Nail Clippers
Brush
Bath
Towel
Soap
Activity description

A nice, clean dog is something everyone wants. However, as dogs get older, they may become adverse toward getting a bath or having their nails trimmed. The best thing to do is expose your young dog to grooming before they develop an unnecessary fear of being bathed, brushed or pampered. While you can opt to simply bring your 6 month old pup to a professional groomer, why not try your hand at it at home? Grooming your own dog is a much less expensive way to keep that pooch clean! And as you may well know, a puppy can get messy very quickly and require multiple baths a week.

Step
1
Set up the tub
Begin by bathing your six month old puppy. Get some pet friendly soap from your vet or local pet store (always make sure the soap is safe for dogs!) and a big tub to bath your dog in. The bathtub at home will work fine but it is also nice to have an outdoor option like a large plastic container that your puppy will fit in.
Step
2
Scrub a dub dub
Wash your dog head to toe and give them lots of love and praise as you do so to make sure they associate baths with something positive. Get your pup out of the tub and dry them off with a towel - watch out for that wet dog shake! Your dog is almost guaranteed to give a good shake and spray water all over, so dry them as quickly as possible before they get this chance!
Step
3
Pamper time
After the bath, try trimming your dog's nails (read a bit about how to do this before you try so that you don't mistakenly cut the 'quick' in the nail which can cause bleeding) or give your pup a good brush. You can also try a hair cut if your six month old needs one - anything that will get them accustomed to and excited for grooming.
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Walking Right

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Sunny Day
Free
Easy
1 hr
Items needed
Harness
Collar
Leash
Activity description

While you have most likely taken your dog for many walks at this point, it is always a good idea to practice proper leash walking with your young puppy. Enforcing walking habits daily (if not multiple times a day) is the only way your puppy will learn to behave on the leash. By six months, your dog is close to their full size and for big dogs, this can mean they are probably at a heavy weight and can now easily pull the leash and "walk" you! Six months is such a great time to work on leash skills before these pulling habits are here to stay. 

Step
1
Proper fit
Make sure your dog has a well fitting collar or harness that is not too tight, but not so loose that they could slip out of it. You should be able to easily fit two fingers under your dog's collar without it hurting them. Your leash should also be of good, sturdy quality that will not tear or rip if pulled.
Step
2
Walk correctly
Head out on a walk with your pup and bring along some treats. The formal way to walk a dog is to have them by your left side, walking in step with you - not pulling ahead, not criss-crossing in front of you but constantly by your side. Keep your dog in this position by holding the leash short and keeping treats at this level.
Step
3
Walk again
Once your dog is walking in pace with you and staying by your side, loosen the leash slightly. Your dog should keep your tempo but, if they try to pull ahead, gently pull the leash back and bring them by your side again. With practice, your dog will learn that this is how you walk and will stay by your side. A six month old puppy will learn this quickly!
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More Fun Ideas...

Car Rides

If you intend on taking your dog on frequent car rides, you want to introduce them to the car as early as possible. Start off by bringing your puppy on short trips and then increase the distance as they get more comfortable. Always make sure your pup is safe in the car and never open the windows wide enough where they could jump out.

Free Run

Puppies certainly have a lot of energy and you should let them release it in a positive way. Go to a location that is completely fenced in and let your six month old puppy run free! Bring a ball or toy for some extra excitement.

Conclusion

A six month old puppy is like a sponge when it comes to what they are learning - they will absorb everything and do so with a smile on their little face! This is a great age to teach your dog good habits and get them into a daily routine. You will also benefit from putting in the extra effort with your puppy now. When you have a well behaved older dog, you will be happy you did all the training young!