Activities For Dalmatian Springers

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Introduction

The beautiful lines of a Dalmatian combined with the fun loving spirit of an English Springer Spaniel is what this fantastic breed is all about. As you may be well aware, Dalmatian Springers are fun loving, active, and very affectionate dogs. They have endless amounts of energy but are also known to curl up with you on the couch to show their adoration. Help your pup get out some of that excess energy by trying one of these fun games designed to suit your Dalmatian Springer's personality. 

The Hunt

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Any Day
Free
Easy
20 min
Items needed
Treats
Activity description

Springer Spaniels were originally bred to help hunt small game animals. This instinct is well ingrained in the breed and, naturally, this trait has been passed on to Dalmatian Springers as well. While you may see your dogs hunting tendencies come out in subtle ways (maybe they circle their bowl of food to try to sniff out hidden treats), it is there none the less! While you do not need to take your pup hunting in the woods for actual live animals, you can set up some of these easy, fun games to help them get out their need to hunt!  

Step
1
Treat path
Set up a game that utilizes your Dalmatian Springer's sense of smell by creating a scent trail. Begin by leaving a small path of treats that lead to a larger "prize" treat. The next time you play, place fewer treats on the path toward the prize. When your pup gets really good at this, simply place a treat on the floor then pick it up, leaving only a scent trail behind. Your dog will amaze you as they easily track the scent to the real prize.
Step
2
Toy search
Hide your dog's favorite toy in the house and ask them where it is. Your Dalmatian Springer will use their nose, eyes and paws to search for their toy and follow your direction. Hide the toy in more challenging places as your pup becomes really good at hunting for toys.
Step
3
Hide and seek
Have your dog "hunt" for you with a game of hide and seek. Tell your dog to sit in one room and stay while you go to hide in another room. Your dog will most likely find you pretty quickly (this breed does know how to hunt!) so make sure to hide somewhere challenging!
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The Chase

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Any Day
Free
Easy
30 min
Items needed
Remote Controlled Car
Ball or Frisbee
Activity description

The Springer Spaniel part of your Dalmatian Spaniel is the side where most of your dog's energy stems from. Those Spaniels sure love to go, go, go! Part of the reason is due to their hunting background where they would be trained to "flush" wild animals toward their owners to capture. Now, you do not need to train your dog to chase after animals but you should let your pup have a little time to run and chase other things around. You will find that your Dalmatian Springer is completely happy when they get to run with a purpose (catching a prize!).  

Step
1
Fetch
The easiest way to let your dog chase is to grab a ball and play a game of fetch. In fact, you don't even need a ball - any toy will do! Throw a stuffed animal, a Frisbee, a rope - anything that your dog can chase and retrieve will work perfectly. Inside or outside, day or night, there is always time for a quick game of fetch with your Dalmatian Springer!
Step
2
Remote car
Purchase a motorized remote controlled toy that your dog can chase around. While there are toys made specifically for dogs to chase that are battery operated and will move forward quickly, a simple kid's remote controlled car will work as well. Use the remote to make the car go forward and back, around in circles and all over the place for your dog to run after!
Step
3
Chase friends
Bring your pup to a dog park so that they can run and chase other dogs (in a friendly way of course!). Your dog will take great joy in being able to run free in a safe place with other pups. In fact, your dog may want to stay and chase other dogs for hours! This will not only get out some of that need to chase but will also help socialize your Dalmatian Springer! It’s a true win-win.
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Special Training

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Any Day
Free
Normal
15 min
Items needed
Treats
Activity description

While there are a lot of smart dog breeds out there, Dalmatians tend to be one of the brightest. However, they are also known to be extremely independent which can lead toward stubbornness and a dog that is not willing to follow commands. You may experience some of this with your Dalmatian Springer so it is something you should address right away while your dog is young. Focusing on training should not be avoided or taken lightly with this breed. You should try to spend some time with your pup every day working on basic skills or teaching them new tricks. Training can be a lot of fun for both of you and will help you have a well-behaved pup in the future! 

Step
1
The basics
Begin by teaching your Dalmatian Springer the basic commands like sit, stay and come. Once they have learned these, don't stop using them! Have your dog run through these commands every day so that they never forget how to do the tricks and also remember who is in charge - you, of course!
Step
2
Fun tricks
Once your dog has learned the basic commands, move into something a little more fun. Train your dog to do something they enjoy on command, combining your need to be the "dominant" one with their love to play. Teach your dog to run fast or fetch or even stand on their back legs and twirl in a circle - all these activities are fun but still show your Dalmatian Springer that you are the boss!
Step
3
Hand signals
Dalmatians as a breed have a long history of deafness which can carry over to Dalmatian Springers. When you are training your pup new tricks, it is a good idea to combine hand motions along with verbal commands. This way, if your pup becomes hard of hearing as they age, you can simply do a quick hand motion and they will know to sit, stay or dance!
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More Fun Ideas...

Make Friends

Dalmatian Springers are quite calm around new animals (Dalmatians were bred to be horse carriage directors!) so bring them to a dog park, a farm or just around a friend's pet. Exposure to a wide range of animals is always a good thing!

Head Out The Door

Dalmatian Springers need to move! Bringing them for daily walks and runs is important for their happiness. So grab that leash and collar and head out your door for some beneficial exercise for you and your dog.

Conclusion

If you have a Dalmatian Springer or are considering adopting one, get ready to have a pup who loves to exercise and play. There is so much you can do with your dog that will help them stay happy, healthy and on the move that it is hard to pick which activity to do first! No matter what you choose to do with your Dalmatian Springer, they are sure to love it as they will be doing an activity with you, their favorite person!