Activities For Dogs Who Love To Learn

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Introduction

If you have a dog who loves to learn, then you know that this can be a blessing and a curse. While it is so great that your pup loves to learn new things, it can be difficult to come up with new games and activities to keep them happy. Never fear! We have some perfect games for dogs who like learning. Tell your pup to get ready to learn a few new tricks and games!

Agility Course

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Hard
1 hr
Items needed
Agility Equipment
Treats
Collar
Activity description

There is nothing more perfect than an agility course for a dog who loves to learn. With numerous tricks and ever changing hurdles, your dog will never get bored of running through a new obstacle course. While there are professional dog courses which you can create and purchase pieces for, you can also simply set up a course for your dog with things around the house. You can also take your pup's love of running through an agility course to the next level and enter them in professional competitions. You dog will never be bored again and will be learning constantly with this activity.

Step
1
Build a course
Set up an obstacle course for your dog that includes a few different tricks that they will need to learn. Having something to jump over, another object to run across (like a balance beam), and a type of tunnel that they need to go under or through are standards in the world of doggy agility courses.
Step
2
Separate the challenges
Teach your pet each obstacle on its own before stringing it together to create the full obstacle course. For example, first teach your pup to jump over a raised stick. Once they have mastered that, have them jump the stick and then proceed through the tunnel. You dog will learn quickly when the 'events' are broken down in this way.
Step
3
Repetition is key
Run the agility course over and over and see if your pup can improve on their time and skill. Once the course seems to easy for your pup, switch it! Add new obstacles or just change the order in which your dog needs to go through. No matter what, they will certainly be learning!
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Red Light, Green Light

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Any Day
Free
Normal
20 min
Items needed
Treats
Activity description

If you ever played this classic childhood game, then you are already probably thinking how fun it would be to play with your dog who loves to learn. While you can use the terms 'red light' and 'green light' as the commands, you can also play the game with the commands 'come' and 'stay' which have the same effect. However, since your pup loves to learn, you should probably teach them the traditional phrases to stay true to the game! This is a game that you can play anytime and anywhere - the best kind of activity for you and your dog. 

Step
1
Choose a good location
Pick a place to play the game and an area that is free of distractions where you can teach your dog. While a quiet park is a good place, a doggy park may be a bad idea (too many fun dog friend distractions!). Once your dog learns and loves the game, distractions won't be an issue.
Step
2
Teaching the fun
Arm yourself with a bunch of treats and start by having your dog sit and stay. Walk away from your pup a little ways and then call them by saying 'come, green light'. You want your dog to begin to associate the word 'come' with 'green light' so saying the phrases together is important. Do the same for red light and 'stay' or 'sit'.
Step
3
Play the game
Once your dog has learned the commands, play red light, green light all day! Reward your dog, and continue to play. Go further and further away from your dog so they also have to run to you and also get a work out. Maybe add in yellow light once your dog is really good at the game!
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New Tricks

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Any Day
Free
Normal
30 min
Items needed
Treats
Activity description

It is clear that a dog who loves to learn should be taught lots of tricks. However, don't let yourself fall behind or think that you have already taught your dog all the tricks they need to know. While your pup may know sit, stay, and come, the standards aren’t enough for a dog who loves to learn! Not all tricks need to serve a purpose either (for example, having your dog actually come when you call them is an important skill for their livelihood, not just for show), think of things that are just fun! Your little learner will simply enjoy the act of discovering a new skill.

Step
1
Plan ahead
Assess what your dog already knows how to do as far as dog tricks go. Also, think about things that your dog enjoys like playing ball or swimming - what is your pup's favorite past time? Use all of this info to decide on what you will teach your dog.
Step
2
New Trick
Pick a new trick or two to teach your dog. You don't want to overwhelm your dog by trying to teach them multiple tricks at once. Two is plenty! Once your dog has them mastered, then you can move on to tricks number 3 and 4 (and since your dog is an avid learner, they will catch on in no time!).
Step
3
Practice
Arm yourself with doggy treats and start working on new tricks with your dog. Teaching a dog a new trick takes time so don't expect your dog to learn overnight. Practice a little each day until the new trick is ingrained in your pup's brain. As always, don't forget the treat rewards!
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More Fun Ideas...

Friends and Family

Teach your dog the names of your friends and family. When you say "Ben", have your friend Ben give your dog a treat. Say "Dad" and have your dad give your pup a treat. Repeat frequently until your dog knows everyone by name!

Puzzle Toy

There is an endless number of puzzle toys for dogs on the market and your dog who loves to learn will never get bored. Grab one or two for your pup and teach them how to unlock the treats within the puzzle!

Conclusion

Dogs who love to learn are like sponges ready to soak up information. Don't let this skill pass you by! Help your dog satisfy this need to learn by teaching them new tricks, games and giving them lots of problems to solve. With your guidance, a dog who enjoys learning will be a happy and very smart pup - definitely the smartest dog on the block! Hopefully you can keep up with your dog's new skills!