Activities For Dogs With Liver Disease

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Introduction

Dogs who suffer with liver disease are often limited in the activities in which they can participate. However, this doesn't mean that they can't still have fun! In the later stages of liver disease, dogs may suffer from lethargy and weakness. Though their bodies may not be up to par, their brains remain very active and still long for mental stimulation. When liver disease is managed and treated, dogs with this illness can continue to enjoy ordinary life and regular daily exercise. With a little ingenuity, liver disease can't keep a good dog down!

Canine Casino

Popular
0 Votes
Any Day
Cheap
Normal
5 - 10 min
Items needed
Aromatic favorite treat
3 plastic cups
Activity description
Whether a dog is feeling well, a little under the weather, or just suffering from old age, there is one faculty that remains the same. Their nose! Since canines possess scent detection capabilities that are up to 40 times more powerful than their human counterparts, making use of a game that relies on Buddy the dog's nose is a great way to stimulate their mind when their body might not be up to more physical tasks. This game also relies heavily on the fact that most dogs love food! When selecting the treats for Canine Casino, it is always wise to choose something with an intense fragrance. Whether it's a piece of homemade tuna fudge or a dehydrated piece of tripe, the deliciously ripe smell is half the fun for your dog! It's important to remember that engaging your dog's brain can also be very tiring for their body. Repeat this game a few times if they seem particularly keen, but you don't want to play it too much lest the appeal wears off. For best results, keep treats to small, manageable pieces. Dogs who are less able to be active struggle with maintaining an ideal body weight. Help keep Buddy's girth in check by only using tiny pieces of premium treats for Canine Casino.
Step
1
Set up the game
Find a quiet location in your home that allows sufficient space to set up Canine Casino. Armed with a fork, poke a few holes into the sides of your plastic cups to make "finding" the hidden treat a little simpler for your dog. To make the game easier for your dog, make the holes larger. If more difficult is your aim, make them quite small or eliminate them altogether. With your dog out of sight of the game, set up the three cups on the floor with a treat placed under one of the cups.
Step
2
Call your dog
With the game in place, it is now time to call your dog. Place your dog in a "sit" directly in front of the game. Give the "find" command. Your dog may use any means they deem fit to unearth their treat. For some dogs, this will take very little time at all. For others, it may be a lengthier process. There is no time restraint, but if you sense your dog is becoming frustrated, you may provide a little assistance to get them on the right track.
Step
3
Repeat the fun
If your dog enjoyed Round 1 of Canine Casino, it's now time to set up for Round 2. As with the first set up time, things go far more smoothly if Buddy doesn't "assist" with getting the game in place. Place your dog in a different room while you reload your cup and selectively arrange each item on the floor again. Once everything is in place, you are now ready for Round 2, 3, and maybe even 4!
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Hide and Go Seek

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Any Day
Free
Easy
10 - 15 min
Items needed
Treats
Balls
Old Toys
Bones
Activity description
Who doesn't love a rousing game of Hide and Go Seek? It's fun for dogs and owners alike! All you need for this sunny weather outdoor game is some of Buddy's favorite objects and your backyard, and you've got yourself a party! Rainy weather putting a damper on your Hide and Go Seek plans? Not a problem. This game is well-suited to moving indoors as well. If your dog is elderly or feeling poorly, it is best to situate the items you want them to seek in a limited amount of space. Depending on the acuteness of your dog's nose as well as their health, you can tailor the game to maximize their interest. Always bear in mind that your level of excitement will increase the fun for Buddy too.Your enthusiasm is infectious for them! Additionally, be certain to bear in mind your dog's frustration level when playing Hide and Go Seek. If you sense your dog is losing interest or finding the game too challenging, you can assist them by providing clues. Always lavishly reward their efforts with praise and even a few treats to make the game that much sweeter for your dog. 

Step
1
Hide the goods
No game of Hide and Seek can exist without something to find. Gather together a few of Buddy's favorite items to hide throughout your yard or a select room in your home. Bear in mind your dog's mental and physical ability to engage in this game. If your dog finds moving difficult, you will want to keep their "search" area more limited in scope. If you have a younger dog capable of greater mobility, you can hide toys in a larger radius. Be sure to include something aromatic. Every dog delights in the occasional easy find!
Step
2
Release the hounds
With all of your objects hidden, you may now call your dog. Make use of a command such as "find" to help your pal understand what it is that you want them to do. You can stand back and watch them search, or even walk around with them to help direct them. Always bear in mind your dog's frustration level and stop the game if your dog loses interest or becomes stressed or irritated. Always end a game on a happy note.
Step
3
Reward your dog
Even if your dog only found one of the five objects you hid for them, that's a cause for celebration. The more excited you get about every find, the more excited Buddy will be to go and look for something else. Always keep an eye for items you can add to your Hide and Seek inventory to keep the game fresh and fun for your dog.
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Take the Plunge

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Any Day
Moderate
Easy
15 min
Items needed
Swimming pool or beach area
Activity description
Keeping your dog limber will help ease the pain of liver disease. Though your dog may no longer be up to marathon long walks, they can still enjoy physical activity. In fact, moving their body is actually very good for them! Swimming is a low impact exercise that provides tremendous health benefits for our dogs. Though not all dogs love to swim, many do. It is important to bear in mind that your dog must take the initiative and enter the body of water of their own volition. Well-meaning owners who throw a dog into the water in the hopes they will learn to swim on their own may inadvertently create a dog who now fears the water and may never be willing to attempt a trip to the beach again. One of the beauties of this game is, it is something you and Buddy can do together. Before you leave the house, be sure to grab your bathing suit and bath towel, so you can suit up for some swim time with your favorite canine pal. On a hot summer day, you can both enjoy reclining on the beach after a relaxing swim in the ocean.
Step
1
Choose the spot
Before you can head out for a day in the water, you must first decide where you will go. The internet is a great resource to help you find beaches and pools that are dog friendly. Be certain to call ahead to find out if dogs are welcomed at the place you hope to swim as well as to ascertain if there are any specific rules or regulations that you and Buddy must follow.
Step
2
Head for the beach
Once you have determined which beach or pool you are headed to, you must leash your companion and load them up in the car. Crank up the tunes, roll down the windows a bit, and enjoy the ride to your favorite swimming spot.
Step
3
Enjoy a swim
Upon arrival at your destination, it is time to hit the water. For dogs with limited mobility, it may be best to suit your dog up with a flotation device which will allow them to remain on the surface of the water and leisurely paddle so as not to exert too much energy. Swimming will help improve your dog's flexibility and joint function. It will also help them to feel more relaxed and to sleep better at night. If headed to a public beach area, be certain to observe all leash laws and to clean up after your dog.
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More Fun Ideas...

Free Shape Tricks

Most dogs love to do things with their owners. For an ideal opportunity which involves spending time with your favorite canine and keeping their brain busy at the same time, consider free shaping. Free shaping typically involves the use of a clicker and very tasty treats. Decide ahead of time what behavior you want your dog to do. If you are training your dog to touch their right paw to a mat, you will place the mat in front of them and reward any interaction with the mat with a click and a treat. By rewarding small offered movements in the right direction, you will generally get the full result you were hoping for!

Snuffle Mat Shuffle

Another activity that engages the brain by encouraging your dog to use their nose, a snuffle mat is a great way to provide mental stimulation for your dog. Available at many different commercial retailers or you can make your own, snuffle mats are an ideal platform in which you can hide tasty tidbits for your dog to find. Treats can be buried deeply within the fabric to keep your dog entertained for hours.

Conclusion

Liver disease is a challenging thing for dogs and their owners to have to cope with. Thankfully, in its early stages, it is treatable, and symptoms can be kept at bay via medications and veterinary assistance. Regardless of the severity of your dog's liver condition, they can still benefit from quality time spent with you, and any opportunity to engage their brain and their body will lead to a happier, healthier dog. Best of all, many games can be modified to accommodate the health condition of any dog. Need something a little more difficult? Not a problem. Is your dog just not up to a lengthy scent-motivated game today? Try something a little simpler for them. Through trial and error, you will learn the games that best motivate your dog. Why not give one a try tonight?