Activities For Basset Shepherds

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Introduction

A Basset Shepherd is a dog that looks exactly like what their name implies; they look like someone took the long, droopy ears of a Basset Hound and attached them to the head of a German Shepherd. As a result, Basset Shepherds look incredibly adorable while also having a build that'll allow them to get into tons of physical activities. Their Basset Hound parentage also comes into play when it comes to the sorts of activities that a Basset Shepherd would enjoy as these dogs have a great sense of smell that enables them to participate in all kinds of scent based games. The German Shepherd brings many excellent qualities as well, including high trainability.

Active Fetch

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
15 - 20 min
Items needed
Frisbee
Ball
Water
Activity description
Active fetch is a great activity to help keep yourself, as well as your dog, in pretty decent shape. The main idea behind active fetch is for pet parents to complete a small set of push ups, sit ups, planks, and other low impact exercises while they simultaneously play fetch with their dogs. While an active fetch session likely won't be enough to help you reach your personal fitness goals alone, it can serve as a great supplemental workout that can be done before or after your usual routine. Conversely, a 15 to 20 minutes session of active fetch can help your dog meet their physical activity needs for the day by itself. Easily played in all sorts of weather conditions and a game of little to no expense, active fetch can be played as often as you want.
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Low impact exercise
We mentioned this phrase earlier while we were describing this activity so we figured we'd take some time to elaborate on our definition of the phrase. Low impact exercises are workouts that can be completed while at least one of your feet are in contact with the ground. Low impact exercises are great for people with knee problems and they're also great for this activity because they can be completed quickly. As some Basset Shepherds will be built low to the ground, low impact is what they need as well.
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Completing a session
Active fetch is pretty intuitive for both parties when all is said and done; your dog will chase after the item you've asked them to fetch as usual while you will try to complete as many low impact activities as you can before your dog makes it back. You can toss the item a short distance away early on if you'd like to take it easy on your dog (and yourself) or you can increase the distance you toss the ball for an added challenge.
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Swimming

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Any Day
Cheap
Normal
30 min
Items needed
Dog Life Jacket
Dog Swimming Goggles
Activity description
German Shepherds are very flexible and capable breeds who can learn to excel in all kinds of activities, so it might not be too surprising to hear that they can learn to become excellent swimmers with time and practice. The same can be said for their Basset Shepherd offspring, as they've inherited many of the traits (chiefly their long muzzles and medium-large builds) that have helped their German Shepherd parents become such adept swimmers. Really, the biggest challenge your Basset Shepherd will likely face in terms of learning how to swim is simply becoming more familiar and ultimately comfortable with being surrounded by water. Pair a short swim with a long walk and you have a low to no cost afternoon in store.
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Always put safety first
When you first begin to teach your dog how to swim, it's absolutely imperative that you make sure you've got everything you need to create a safe swimming environment. It might not be such a bad idea to get a few life jackets and swimming goggles on deck so that you can outfit your Basset Shepherd with them during the training stages. We've also found that it's best to make sure your dog stays in the shallow end of the pool so that they don't get nervous in deeper water.
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Mix things up
As your dog begins to swim around the water with greater ease over time, you might be tempted to think that they've become master swimmers within a short period of time. However you won't truly know if your dog has mastered this activity until you let them swim in different kinds of environments; man-made pools are great places to start, but try taking your dog swimming in a shallow lake to see how they handle this new venue.
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Urban Backpacking

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Any Day
Moderate
Hard
45 - 60 min
Items needed
First Aid Kit
Backpack
Leash
Food and Water
Activity description
Urban Backpacking is alternative activity that calls for pet parents and their dogs to trek through a city of their choice as if they were going for a hike through the wilderness. Urban backpacking was derived from regular backpacking - an activity in which individuals walk through the wilderness for long stretches of time, making camp when the need arises. While urban backpacking may seem, and even may genuinely be, easier than traditional backpacking in a number of areas, one still needs to rigorously plan ahead in order to ensure that they have a safe and extraordinarily fun session with their Basset Shepherd. The expense of this type of backpacking will depend on how long you plan to trek and whether you will be seeking accommodation overnight.
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Urban backpacking basics
The actual act of backpacking is intuitive enough; one will simply just walk from one destination to the next with a backpack full of supplies slung over their shoulders. But even though this activity may sound easy enough on paper, there's still a lot of planning that you'll need to do ahead of time. The fact that you and your dog will be trekking through a city as opposed to a forest provides its own set of pros as well as its own set of cons.
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Plan Properly
This phase is really the hardest part of the activity, as your ability to anticipate obstacles and plan accordingly will be put to the test. Another challenging aspect of the planning phase is figuring out how much stuff you can afford to bring along for the trip; if you and your dog are going to lodge at a hotel of some sort, we say leave the camping supplies at home. If the two of you plan to eat out, then don't bring as much food as you normally would on a backpacking trip. As goes for rural or mountainous backpacking, respect your environment and others you meet along the way. Importantly, respect your Basset Shepherd and don't push them to keep going in excessive heat or inclement weather.
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More Fun Ideas...

Flyball

This activity will both test and eventually improve your dog's speed with enough time and practice. Flyball is a challenging activity that encourages dogs to run over hurdles so that they can retrieve a ball from a spring loaded box, run through the course in the opposite direction, and then hand the ball to their owner. This can be played as a team sport too and makes for fun competitions!

Cup Game

Basset Shepherds are pretty sharp dogs who can figure out a number of different problems when they really put their minds to it. To help your Basset Shepherd become that much sharper in between the ears, introduce them to a number of brain teasing games like this one. To play the cup game, you simply need to get a hold of a few cups and dog treats. Place one of those treats under a cup, shuffle the cups around, and then encourage your dog to guess which cup hides their treat.

Conclusion

For those of you who haven't heard of a Basset Shepherd before, we hope we've piqued your interest enough to inspire you to learn more about these fascinating dogs. For those of you who have heard of these dogs and have considered adopting one into your family, we hope we've been able to convince you to commit to that decision. The flexibility and versatility of Basset Shepherds are  some of their greatest strengths, but the main reason we've found these dogs to be so endearing is their naturally high level of friendliness and their ability to compliment folks from all walks of life.