Activities For Bouvadors

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Introduction

The Bouvador truly has an outstanding pedigree behind it; both of the parent breeds are largely considered to be dogs of all trades - the Bouvier des Flanders (who provides the "Bouv" in the Bouvador's name), hails from Belgium and was bred to work as a herding and carting dog as well as a police dog. The Labrador Retriever (who provides the "dor" in the Bouvador's name) is a breed that hardly needs an introduction and has been employed to work as everything from a seeing-eye dog to a therapy animal. As a result, the Bouvador is practically genetically predisposed to be a great dog - they just need to be reared properly by a caring and loving pet parent.

Canine Camping

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
24 - 72 hrs
Items needed
Tent, Sleeping Bags
Leash
Maps, Compass, GPS
Food and Water
First Aid Kit
waste bags
Activity description
Bouvadors are definitely outdoorsy type dogs; they absolutely abhor sitting around like a potato and prefer to get out there and get active. But sometimes you aren't in the mood to be all that physically active. If only there were an activity that could help you and your dog meet each other halfway! Enter camping; sure you have to be pretty physically active while you're walking to your campsite, but that's basically as much legwork as you'll need to do. Camping will effectively allow you to relax outdoors while your dog plays to their heart's content. You can get everything you need for a camping trip for about $200 or less, so this isn't too expensive of an activity either especially since camping gear can be used over and over.
Step
1
Mapping out your route
Before setting foot in the campground, you should spend some time planning out the route you intend to travel with your dog. Don't base your route on landmarks, as they aren't the most reliable indicators of one's position if they've been removed or altered. Instead, use your latitude, longitude, and position of shadows.
Step
2
Stick fetch
If you've camped in a forested area, there will likely be plenty of twigs and tree branches that you can use to play fetch with your dog. You don't even have to leave base camp to do this activity - you can stay nestled and cozy in a hammock or chair while your dog runs out and retrieves the stick. Just don't throw the stick too far out of your line of sight. For this off-leash activity, keep in mind that your Bouvador must have excellent recall skills.
Step
3
Other camping games
Once you've set up camp, you and your dog can play a number of games using some of the equipment you used to reach your campsite; walking sticks can be used as flirt poles while the bags you've likely used to carry your gear around can be used as cover if you and your Bouvador play hide and seek together.
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Canine Cooking Assistant

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
45 - 60 min
Items needed
Kitchen Utensils
Cookable, dog friendly food
Activity description
Bouvadors do their best to help their human companions to the best of their ability; they'll help a shepherd herd their livestock and a visually impaired person get from point A to point B. With Bouvadors being capable of all that, and more, them helping you out while you're cooking will be a cinch! Bouvadors can learn to retrieve and put away certain kitchen utensils on request and they can also learn how to help you clean up after all of the cooking has been done. It's a bit hard to gauge how much you'll need to save up for this activity exactly, as the price of the food you need to get will depend on what type you're in the mood for, but we think you should be able to get a few pounds of good quality chicken for less than $20.
Step
1
Tool management
Teach your dog how to recognize and retrieve specific tools like spoons, ladles, bowls, and wiping cloths. We heavily recommend to not have your dog interact with any sharp utensils or any that use heat or electricity. Stick with smooth and simple tools and handle the sharper tools personally. Once they hand you the tools, give the items a quick wash and you are good to go.
Step
2
Rate the recipe
With your Bouvador by your side, seek and create a dish that you can both enjoy. Dogs enjoy people food and there are many types of vegetable and meat dishes that they can sample in small quantities. Rice, carrots, eggs, cheese, pumpkin, apples and more - the list is quite long! Do your research and as you cook, let your Bouvador be a taste tester.
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Flanders Field Trip

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Any Day
Expensive
Easy
72 hrs
Items needed
Leash
Dog Bed
Food and Water
Vaccination Records
First Aid Kit
Activity description
Despite what it might sound like, we're not talking about going on a trip with a beloved Simpsons character. We're actually talking about planning a trip to the Flemish region of the country of Belgium - the birthplace of your Bouvador's Bouvier des Flanders parent. Flanders is a very historic place with much to see and much to do. The region is beautiful all year round, so you and your Bouvador are free to visit during any kind of weather season that you'd like. Plane tickets to Flanders are fairly cheap, with a 3 day round trip from some destinations in the United States costing less than $500. Keep your eye open for sales and start planning!
Step
1
Ossegempark
Full of dirt roads and tall trees, Ossegempark is an off-leash dog park that's been around for more than a few decades. Your Bouvador will relish the opportunity to run around such a wide open space and play with other dogs that are visiting the area. Ossegempark is open 24 hours a day, though the ideal time to meet other dogs is around noon-ish.
Step
2
Happy Puppy
This cute pet store is located in Brussels - the very capital of Belgium itself. Cats and dogs are welcomed at this locale, provided their pet parents are keeping a close watch over them at all times. Bouvadors tend to handle cats very well, so you won't have to worry about your puppy getting spooked by any cats that are in the area.
Step
3
Sofitel Brussels Europe
One of Brussels' foremost luxury hotels, the Sofitel Brussels Europe will allow visitors to bring their pets along with them for no extra charge! There aren't too many wide open spaces where you and your dog can play together at the Sofitel Brussels Europe but there are a number of parks and open lots that the two of you can make use of which aren't too far away from the hotel.
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More Fun Ideas...

Snuffle Mat

Possibly the most unconventional toy on this list, snuffle mats prompt dogs to use their sense of smell to weed out treats and pieces of food that have been carefully hidden in the mat. You can either buy a mat from a pet supply retailer or you can make one yourself using a small rug and a pair of scissors.

Ball and Cup Game

Get three or more cups and your dog's favorite ball, catch your Bouvador's attention, and then hide the ball underneath one of the cups. While your dog is looking at you, move the cups around as quickly as you can without accidentally revealing the ball hidden underneath. After a few moments of shuffling the cups, stop and ask your Bouvador to get their ball. If they aren't able to succeed after a few tries, you may need to slow your shuffling speed down.

Flip Board Treat Toy

Here's the set up; there are treats hidden away in this puzzle that can only be accessed by flipping certain components around. Your dog will be able to smell the treats inside of the toy, but they won't be able to see them. It'll be up to your Bouvador to figure out how to solve this puzzle and reach their tasty reward.

Conclusion

Even though we tried to cover a wide range of topics in this guide, we were really only able to scratch the surface of what Bouvadors are capable of; these dogs are just as versatile as either of their parents, and they can learn to do all sorts of amazing things with enough time, practice, and dedication. Bouvadors are also incredibly intelligent dogs who love to be introduced to new challenges on a consistent basis. Really, the only reason you shouldn't adopt a Bouvador is if you don't think you can keep pace with these astonishing hybrids. That's not to say that Bouvadors are needy animals - they just have a way of pushing their companions to do their best simply by virtue of their inspirational nature.