Activities For Golden Cavaliers

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Introduction

The Golden Cavalier has moderate exercise requirements and enjoys activities such as a walk in the park, family games, or just a stroll through the market stalls. Do keep them on a leash though, as they have a tendency to wander. Like all dogs, they will get bored with repetition. Walking the same old route to the same old park can be less than inspiring, so try to vary their daily activities and make it interesting for them. Our activities are designed to challenge your dog, to really make them use their minds to solve a problem. They are to provide a different physical exercise or two all under the disguise of having fun. That is the most important part for your Golden Cavalier. If it's not fun then why bother, is their motto. Many dogs lose concentration if the game is too serious or they don't get to win a game. That can be depressing and they will soon leave you to play the game by yourself. A gorgeous cross between the Golden Lab and the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, they love praise, they love to win, and they love to feel important. So build them up, let them win occasionally, and make learning fun!

Home Alone

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Toys
Treats
Activity description
Many dogs are home alone while their owners are out working. They must spend several hours entertaining themselves, and if they get bored, then you have trouble. Consider your Golden Cavalier's temperament and make some plans to make their time alone fun. Rotate their toys or leave out a different ball to play with. Treat toys are fun and can provide an hour of safe fun. Even just placing a handful of small biscuits throughout the house will take them ages as they scour the area time and time again to ensure they don't miss a treat. Your dog needs mental stimulation - they enjoy having to figure out a problem. Give them a variety of tasks and even include a surprise visit from someone they know well. All make for a happy pooch and as a bonus - happy neighbors who won't have to listen to a howling dog all day!
Step
1
Plan in advance
Think up some ways that you can vary your dog's day. Perhaps you could come home at lunchtime and take your pup into the yard for a breath of fresh air. Rotate your dog's toys so they don't get tired of playing with the same toys. If you really want to splurge, you could pre-set a ball launcher in a large cleared out room and they can chase the balls.
Step
2
Plan a visit
Maybe you know a relative or a friend that is familiar to your dog who could pay a visit to your home. You could trade activities with them - they dog sit on some days while you babysit when they want to go out. Use your imagination to make your dog's life fun and you will never come home to upset neighbors.
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Ring Stack

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Any Day
Expensive
Hard
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Rings
Stand to stack the rings
Activity description
Toys can teach your dog a lot; take the ring stacking game for instance. Teaching your Golden Cavalier to pick up and stack rings sounds easy, but it is not. This is one game that will take your dog a while to learn. Wooden rings covered with a natural dye are better than hard plastic, as your dog will be biting down on these and could end up hurting their mouth. Get rings that suit the size of your dog. This activity causes your dog to think the steps through, and teaches them eye to mouth (or paw) coordination. Reward them with a treat for their hard work because for a dog, stacking the rings is tough going! They deserve a treat. This activity can take several days for your dog to learn; teach it in stages and soon they can be happily stacking rings like a professional trickster.
Step
1
Start slow and easy
Get your dog used to the rings, how to pick them up and hold them in their mouth. Let them play with them for a bit before introducing them to the stand and showing them how the rings are stacked.
Step
2
Let them try
Let them try as you get them to pick up a ring, and try to maneuver it onto the stacking stand. Praise them for their efforts, even help them to get a ring on as they could get frustrated if they can't get it to work. Gently play with them and help them until they can do it themselves.
Step
3
Game on
As mentioned, this activity takes a while to get the coordination your dog needs to stack the rings. Be patient and always praise them for being so clever. A treat or two will keep them interested in trying. It's a great mental workout too. Before long your dog will be stacking those rings on their own and won't need your help.
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Seek the Treasure

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Rainy Day
Moderate
Normal
30 - 60 min
Items needed
selection of boxes
Treats
Activity description
You can plan a treasure hunt with your Golden Cavalier which trains them to use their nose to seek out an object - usually a treat. Spread the boxes around the room and only put treats in a few of them. Then, your dog has to go and check out each box to find a treat. Use commands like 'search' or 'find' so they get to know what is expected of them. This is a game that is fun, it is also training and your dog is learning to follow instructions. You can play it on a cold wet day when you are stuck inside. You can make the game harder by closing the boxes and getting your dog to work out how to open them - with out ripping them apart! Start easy so that your dog is not discouraged and as they learn, increase the difficulty of the game.
Step
1
A few boxes
Make it easy for your dog to learn to seek out a treat using their nose. First, give them a treat to whet their appetite. Then put a few treats into every box to start with. Next, instruct your dog to move from their sitting position to go and find the treat.
Step
2
Add more boxes
Once your Golden Cavalier gets the idea of the game, they will be raring to go. Add a few more boxes and this time just add a few treats to every second or third box. Then send your Golden Cavalier to seek the treat.
Step
3
Make the game harder
This time close the boxes using the flaps and again put some treats in only a few of the boxes. Tell your dog to seek the treat but this time they have to open the box to get inside. Ripping the box open is cheating and not allowed. Once your dog learns this skill, you can hide a toy, or whatever you like, then hide the box. They will be earning those treats now!
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More Fun Ideas...

Puzzle Toys

Puzzles come in an array of styles. Some include boxes with buttons your dog must push to get a treat, or a lever they have to push down to find the goodies. Some puzzles have a combination of levers, buttons that make a cool noise when your dog pushes them, or sliders that when moved to open, reveal a hidden treat. These are great brain teasers for your Golden Cavalier. They must think and work out the toy to find the treat.

Fun With a Bone

Between licking and chewing, your dog's jaws will get a great workout when they are given a safe bone. It takes time for your dog to get the good stuff out and it will entertain them for hours. Then of course, they have to bury it. Where else but in your garden but try to understand, this is part of being a dog! 

Browsing at the Pet Store

This activity may cost you a dollar or two! Your dog will enjoy having a wander through a new pet store - many owners will allow a well-behaved dog to come inside. Be prepared to purchase a treat or two - your dog will beg you quietly with their eyes. It can be fun looking at all the toys and accessories that are available. With the attention they get from the shop assistants, your Golden Cavalier may even get a sample or two of a new treat to try! The smells and meeting other pets is all part of the excitement. 

Conclusion

The Golden Cavalier is a very affectionate dog and bonds closely with their family. They are patient with children and will join in their games or they will try to help them with their homework. A well-socialized dog will get along with other pets, and you may find your cat and dog enjoying a game of chase or even a wrestling match! Taking your dog for a romp out along a semi-deserted beach will wear off some energy, just make sure they are trained to come back to you when you want them to. They enjoy meeting other people and dogs so they can get easily sidetracked. If they don't obey, clip them back on their lead for a while before trying again. They will soon get the idea that they will get more freedom if they obey. A dog that has plenty of variety in life is a happy, contented dog. Try out some of our activities - your dog will love you for it.