Activities For Dogs Who Like Pinball

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Introduction

If you are an avid pinball player and also the proud owner of a playful pup who loves pinball just as much as you do, you may consider combining these two loves. Do you wonder, how could you ever play pinball with a dog? It doesn’t seem like a very dog friendly game….except it is! There are plenty of ways that you can make your dog just as excited about pinball as you are! Start off with these fun activities and see how easy it is to play pinball with your pup.

Play The Game

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Any Day
Cheap
Hard
30 min
Items needed
Pinball Machine
Treats
Chair or Couch
Activity description
Of course, actually teaching your dog to play pinball is the first step you can take toward creating a pinball loving dog. While this may be a little tricky, there are plenty of dogs who have learned to play the game in the past so your dog surely can as well! Before you begin your dog's pinball training, make sure you set your expectations to the right level. While your dog may enjoy playing and watching that ball bounce all around, they may never be quite as good as a human….or will they?!? Maybe the pup will have a better game than the teacher….
Step
1
Set up
Get your dog set up in front of a pinball machine by giving them something high to sit or stand on. While it is ideal that your dog has both front paws on the buttons in order to play, a smaller dog may be better off sitting on a high platform and using one paw to bat at the buttons.
Step
2
Teach the game
Begin teaching your pup how to play the game by holding their paws and helping them hit the buttons when necessary. It is also useful to incorporate commands at this step. When the pinball ball comes down, say “ball” and then have your dog press the button in order to hit the ball back up. Repeat this, helping your dog paw at the machine until they are doing it on their own.
Step
3
Practice and play
Keep your pinball training going and make sure your pup practices their game every day. A dog who remembers to practice pinball will be a pro in no time! Your dog is also sure to love playing as the ball shooting around the machine will be exciting and something a dog just can’t look away from.
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Other Balls

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
30 min
Items needed
Ball
Activity description
Your pup is constantly at your pinball machine, paws up on top, eyes following that little ball in every direction. Does this sound familiar? If your dog is entranced by your playing pinball, chances are they will love playing real ball as well. The part of pinball your dog likes, after all, is the ball! Find a toy ball that is similar in color to the pinball machine ball to make it even more appealing to your dog. Do, however, get a larger ball for your dog to play with as real pinball balls are quite small and could pose a choking threat, something you definitely want to avoid!
Step
1
Fetch the ball
Bring your dog outside in your yard or to a local park to play a classic game of fetch. While it may seem simple, fetch is a classic for a reason - dogs love it! Your dog will likely love it even more than most as chasing a real ball is quite similar to being mesmerized by a pinball ball!
Step
2
Tennis ball thrower
Invest in a tennis ball thrower that will throw your dog's favorite ball even further than you would be able to on your own. Head to a large open area like a football field or beach where you can use the thrower to really toss that ball. Your dog will love chasing the ball and get some great exercise in as well. Make sure your pup is aware of other beachgoers, however, if there are others pups and parents enjoying the surf and sand.
Step
3
Frisbee fetch
Switch up the game of fetch by using a frisbee instead of a ball. The hovering nature of a spinning disc will be exciting and new for your dog. Frisbees can also be much easier for your dog to catch as they float in the air rather than fall down fast.
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Real Life Pinball

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Any Day
Cheap
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
Treats
Obstacles
Ball
Activity description
Have you ever wondered how you could bring a game of pinball to life? Well, this activity will show you how! Not only will you get to mimic a game of pinball, your pup will be the one helping you at every step. It takes a little bit of time to set up but what is also great about this life-sized game of pinball is that you can change it however you want, making it easy to keep the game fresh and new for both you and your dog. Perfect for inside or outdoors, this game is versatile, fun and is made for pinball lovers like you and your dog.
Step
1
Game rules
The idea of life-sized pinball is to throw a ball for your pup but have it bounce off several obstacles before hitting the ground or before your pup can grab it with their mouth. You can keep score by giving yourself one point for every object the ball hits before landing on the ground. Once your dog has the ball, they should bring it back to you or place it in the “goal” to get another point. Simple enough!
Step
2
Obstacle set up
Grab a few obstacles to act as your pinball course. You want to get items that are sturdy enough for a ball to bounce off of but unique enough to make the course challenging. Try setting up a few chairs on one side of the room, some pots and pans perhaps on the other side and a coffee table in the middle of the room. Maybe place a large pot for your “goal” and as final destination for the ball.
Step
3
Bounce and play
Practice throwing the ball at the obstacles and getting them to bounce around really well before calling your pup into the game. Can you get the ball to hit the chair, the table and then go right into the pot? Can you throw the ball against a wall and then directly into your dog's mouth? How many points can you and your pup get while playing life-sized pinball?
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More Fun Ideas...

Puzzle Toys

If your dog loves pinball, they may just be a big fan of games in general. Try giving your dog a puzzle treat toy and see if they can figure out how to get the treats out!

Speed Work

Pinball is all about being quick and pressing the levers before the ball can fall. Practice this with your dog by giving speed high fives. Have your dog hit your hand with their paw as quickly as possible over and over again.

Conclusion

Pinball is a very fun game that will be even better when you can play with your pup. All of these activities incorporate aspects of pinball that your pup will love and are creative enough to keep every day exciting. No longer does your pup have to sit and watch as you get to play pinball and they are left out - it is finally time for them to play too! See, now you know that pinball is perfect for everyone, even dogs!