Activities For Brussaliers

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Introduction

Your Brussalier hybrid is an adorable mix of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Brussels Griffon, a dog who exudes energy, intelligence, playfulness, love, and loyalty. This gentle and sweet-tempered canine gets along famously with people, children, and other animals, and is able to live in virtually any home environment ranging from apartment or condo to homes with large fenced yards.  They can live in most moderate climates, except any which subject them to temperature extremes, either hot or cold.  Sometimes, your precious pup is quite the comical clown, while at other times, equally content to snuggle on your lap for hours on end!  While all of these traits are desirable, other characteristics (energy and intelligence levels) require some management on your part to keep your darling doggie healthy and happy. Your pooch needs about 45 minutes per day of moderate exercise to avoid the development of annoying habits brought on by boredom.

Animal Assistance

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Any Day
Free
Easy
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Dog collar or harness
4 to 6' leash
Drinking water
Snacks
Activity description
This activity is one that provides goodwill and a positive influence on people who genuinely have a need. It involves you and your calm, sweet-tempered best bud traveling to a local hospital or nursing home facility and visiting with the residents of those facilities.  This adventure, depending on the establishment’s rules and restrictions, may require some training and certification, but the encouragement that results is beyond belief.  The Animal Assistance Activity (AAA) permits a canine’s visit to the patient’s bedside, bringing smiles and joy into the lives of those infirmed.  The therapeutic value of the presence of a friendly dog, petting and being snuggled, that is so warming to those of us who experience this on a daily basis from our four-legged furry family members, is also found advantageous to those who are recovering from surgeries and illnesses.  Generally very little is needed from you and your Brussalier, except a collar (or harness) and leash, to participate, as well as the identification supplied by the training organization to authorize your approved presence.
Step
1
Find the facilities
If you’d like to get involved in this voluntary and encouraging activity, you’ll need to know the location of the associated facilities. Finding the facility requires a search of your phone book, internet search or word of mouth referrals from friends and family. Not all communities participate in this type of patient interaction, but the AAA trend is catching on all over the country. Do your search of local nursing homes and hospitals, tabulate your list, and begin making the phone calls to trim the roster to viable organizations, crossing off those who don’t allow these types of visits.
Step
2
Evaluate your dog
Now that you know the type of facilities you would like to visit with your Brussalier, you must take training as volunteer dog and partner. Find an association that you feel corresponds with your personality and ideals, and go have your pet evaluated. Some of the criteria for a dog who will volunteer are the dog must be a least one year of age, they must be properly vaccinated, and be responsive to all obedience commands. Tolerance of strangers is a necessity and your dog will be required to accept the wearing of identity items such as vests or bandanas. As an owner, you have to be able to make conversation with those you visit and be able to read your dog's body language among other criteria.
Step
3
Learn and visit
You are now ready to learn the ropes of this very satisfying activity. While in the duration of the course, practice by going on outings in your neighborhood to further prepare your Brussalier for the people they will meet. It is essential that your precious pooch be gentle and friendly with strangers, so if your pet needs additional work in this area, be sure to socialize sufficiently so as not to present a danger to the patients, staff or other bystanders who may encounter you and your best bud. Once the training is complete, you can begin this rewarding pastime with your pup!
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Pet Store Trip

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Any Day
Moderate
Easy
60 min
Items needed
Dog collar or harness
4 to 6' leash
Drinking Water
Activity description
Most people like to shop and do so with some regularity, and your playful pup loves it, too!  Most pet stores allow dogs inside to walk, sniff and investigate their wares. Some stores even provide a doggie treat for your canine companion!  While maintaining control over your Brussalier, allow them to guide you up and down the aisles of the shop, stopping to check out exciting and delightfully scented treats and foods, gayly colored toys that squeak, rattle or roll, or, the more than occasional stop to sniff a passing pup or person.  Watch and enjoy as they search and investigate their environment, something most family pets don’t get much opportunity to do in our current lifestyles.  Be prepared for your Brussalier to lead you to an exciting new toy, or a new doggie bed, or a yummy bag of treats during this adventure.  Although you may find the weather outside frightful, your time with your pup can be delightful.  The cost of this trip could be free or range to moderate or expensive, depending on how open you are to the preferences of your pawed playful pet!
Step
1
Organize the outing
This outing can be a spur of the moment event or planned and neatly fitted into your busy schedule. Carve out one to two hours of time to spend with your best bud, doing something you’ll both enjoy. It might be a good idea to be sure to carry money with you for this adventure - your pup may be successful at convincing you to buy when you least expect to do so. Pick a local pet store that is a comfortable drive from your home - just far enough away to give your pooch the thrill of a car or truck ride (maybe even with windows or convertible top down). Check out the store’s sale flyer to see if purchasing pet supplies is an option for the trip as well.
Step
2
Collar your canine
Attaching your pet’s collar or harness will send a signal to them that something fun is afoot. Going outside is always a treat for canines, giving them the opportunity to sniff and search the exciting scents. In this case, the scents will be at the pet store. Once your canine is in the car, make them and any other travelers comfortable, safely seating and buckling them into the vehicle, proceed to the fun destination of choice.
Step
3
Enjoy the experience
Once you’ve arrived at the chosen pet store, allow your Brussalier the pleasure of leading you around the shop, up and down the aisles, as they sniff, taste and paw at the wares displayed on the shelves and displays. It is fun to watch your gentle and usually calm four-legged family member as they tug at the leash, urging you down yet another aisle. Don’t be surprised if they bring you back to the same place repeatedly, a definite signal to you that they desire a particular thing or food. Just as children can let you know that they want something when you’re shopping with them, so can your frisky friend alert you. And, remember, we suggested that you bring funds to shop!
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Frisbee Toss

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Sunny Day
Free
Easy
20 - 30 min
Items needed
Frisbee disk
Drinking water
Snacks for rewards
Activity description
Your Brussalier is an energetic canine, whose activity levels require management to avoid those annoying behaviors which can develop from boredom.  While they are active little dogs, they only need about 45 minutes a day of moderate exercise to stay happy and healthy.  The Frisbee toss is a game which is generally played outside, so a warm, sunny day is the perfect weather scenario to play.  Most families possess a Frisbee, either as a child’s toy or a doggie one, but even if you don’t already own one, the purchase of the disk is pretty cheap. For those dogs who have played this game, you should begin by tossing the toy low and slow until they get accustomed to running and retrieving it, being sure to reward appropriate behavior with yummy treats for positive reinforcement.  Because you’ll want to monitor your pup, not wanting to overheat or overtire them, you’ll need to stop the game periodically for rest and refreshment.  The play time (not counting the rest periods) should not exceed about 30 minutes, with the exercise repeated as often as desired, as many times a day as you like.
Step
1
Familiarize your furry friend
For dogs who have never played with a Frisbee disk, you’ll need to acquaint them with the toy. Let them sniff and lick it, allowing them to take it from you to complete their investigation. Encourage them to pick it up and carry it, returning it to you without yet tossing it. Understanding that the toy is a fun thing is vital for the successful completion of the game. Reward obedience with a yummy treat.
Step
2
Apply the approach
Once familiarized with the disk, give it a short, low toss, and encourage your pup to chase it, bringing it back to you. This action comes naturally to most dogs, so this step generally has a short learning curve. As they catch on to the game, toss the toy higher and farther away, but be sure to reward them with each return of the retrieved Frisbee.
Step
3
Play, rest and hydrate
You will need to monitor your Brussalier to avoid overheating and overtiring. Toss the toy for 5 to 10 minutes, then make them stop for rest, rehydration and reward. The entire game period should not exceed more than about 30 minutes of actual playtime to avoid fatigue and overheating. Your comical canine will happily entertain you and the rest of the family as you repeat this game over and over again.
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More Fun Ideas...

Bubble Chase

This game involves using a bubble mixture like the type many of us played with as children.  Dip the wand into the bubble mixture, then wave it around in the air.  Bubbles will fly about on the air currents, attracting the attention of your precious pooch, allowing you to watch with delight as they jump and play to catch the bubbles.

Kong Stuffing

This activity appeals to the taste buds of your pet.  The Kong toy can be purchased at your local pet store for a reasonable cost.  It has a hollow core with a hole in the bottom which allows insertion of peanut butter or another yummy treat of a creamy consistency.  Fill the Kong with the creamy treat, then watch in amazement as your little four-legged comedian works to clean out the contents.

Conclusion

As the proud owner and pet parent of a Brussalier hybrid, you can expect years of comical entertainment, love, and loyalty from this gentle, sweet-tempered four-legged furry family member.  Though they are all of that and great with kids, and other animals, there is a price you must pay for that sweet disposition. They must be socialized early in their lives, their energy levels managed, and intelligence levels challenged on a daily basis to avoid those annoying habits that we all know occur from boredom.