Activities For Grand Basset Griffon Vendeens

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Introduction

The Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen is a rather unusual looking scenthound. They are longer bodied than they are tall and were used to hunt wolves and deer. This canine has a lot of stamina and is an intelligent breed. They have a shaggy, comical appearance with defined eyebrows, beard, and moustache. Do not let their rugged looks fool you; these are sensitive dogs that also tend to over-think things. Expect these dogs to get into trouble when they do not have enough things to occupy their time. Daily activities are necessary to keep them happy.

Therapy Dog

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
30 min
Items needed
Collar
Leash
Treats
Therapy Log
Activity description

There is no better feeling than seeing a dog give comfort to those that are hurting or sick. The Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen is an excellent choice for a therapy dog because of their goofy, non-threatening appearance. They are just the right size so they are not intimidating to children or elderly people and they are sturdy enough that they can be hugged and held onto without fear of fragile bones breaking. Most therapy dogs work in nursing homes, schools, library, and hospitals. Some therapy dogs are even beginning to venture into prisons to provide comfort for prisoners. The American Kennel Club (AKC) offers therapy dog titles for dogs that complete at least ten certified visits. The more visits they make, the more titles they can earn up to Therapy Dog Distinguished where your dog must complete 400 visits. 

Step
1
Learn about therapy
Before diving in to therapy work, do a little research and see where the biggest need will be in your community. Also, look into the different titles that your dog can earn while doing therapy work. Make sure your dog knows their basic obedience and is well socialized so they can handle any situation. Ask around and see if you can talk with someone who already does therapy work with their dog.
Step
2
Join a club
In order for your dog to earn therapy titles through the AKC; you must be a part of a club that offers therapy dog training. Check around your community and find a club that will fit your needs. The club members will help you get ready to start making your visits and help you determine where your dog will be the most useful. If your dog is a little unsure of children, then you do not want to begin their career by visiting schools.
Step
3
Start visiting
When you are ready to start making your visits, call ahead and ask what days and times are best for you and your dog to come in. Once you have a set time in mind, prepare for your visit by gathering your dog’s collar, leash, treats, and the official therapy visit log. As soon as you get to the facility, have the person in charge sign your log so your visit can count towards the AKC Therapy Dog program. Keep calm and let your dog set the tone of the visit.
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Tracking

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Any Day
Expensive
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
Collar
Leash
Treats
Scents
GPS Tracker (optional)
Activity description

The Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen is a scenthound and will use their nose no matter what activity they are doing, but what better way to enjoy spending time with your dog than by doing something they were bred to do. You can teach your dog tracking for hunting, search and rescue, or just to have fun sniffing out items that you have hidden. Tracking can be done in any weather, but your dog will be the most successful on sunny days with little wind. Depending on why you want to teach your dog to track will determine how expensive the activity becomes. When you are tracking in the field or performing search and rescue work, your dog should probably be fitted with a collar that has a GPS tracker. This way you can keep track of your dog even when they are out of your sight. 

Step
1
Teach recall
When your dog finds the right scent and begins giving chase, they can easily get far ahead of you. This is why it is important that your dog knows the recall command. When working off leash, it is important that your dog listen to you and immediately abandon the scent and return to you. Experienced handlers can easily teach recall at home, however, if you are not an experienced handler you may want to enroll your dog in an obedience class.
Step
2
Introduce scents
There are thousands of scents that bombard a scent hound on a daily basis. When teaching tracking, your dog must be able to forget about all the other smells around them and focus on only one particular scent. Start with a very strong scent and hide it in a relatively easy place for them to find. As soon as they locate the scent, give them praise and a treat. This will reinforce that they did exactly what you were asking and they will want to continue.
Step
3
Start tracking
Once your Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen is consistently finding the right scent, it is time to start tracking off leash and out of sight. Do not rush your dog; it may be that they are not ready for this final step for quite a while. Once they are ready, it is time to decide if you are going to use your dog for hunting, search and rescue, or some other purpose. Once you know their purpose, you can begin their specialty training to turn them into a fantastic tracker.
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Take a Hike

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Normal
1 - 2 hrs
Items needed
Collar & Leash
Backpack
First Aid Kit
Bottled Water
Collapsible Bowl
Treats
Activity description

Hiking is not the same as taking a stroll through your neighborhood. Most hikers will prefer sunny or slightly overcast days; warmer weather is better than cold weather. If you are planning a short hiking trip, then you will need a collar, leash, doggy backpack, first aid kit, treats, bottled water, and a collapsible water bowl. You will need to pack more if you are planning an overnight hiking trip. When you are on the trail, be sure to keep your Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen close by, a longer leash is a good way to keep them corralled. If your dog is not used to hiking, take frequent breaks and if they show any signs of distress, stop the hike and head back to your vehicle. Hiking is a cheap activity and almost anyone can go for short hikes at their local parks. 

Step
1
Plan Your hike
Depending on how confident you are with your hiking skills, you may want to start small and take shorter hikes near your home. If you are heading into a large state or national park, be sure to print off a map and highlight the route you are planning to take. Leave a copy of your route with a friend so if you become lost, authorities will have an idea of where to search. If you and your dog are not used to hiking, look for routes that will not test your athleticism but will offer a relaxing hike. You can always build up to a more challenging hike.
Step
2
Prepare your packs
When hiking you will probably want to pack some essentials for you and your dog. Treats and snacks for you and your dog along with bottled water will be a good idea. Your Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen can also carry a small backpack to help lessen your load. Pick up a backpack that has enough padding and will not be uncomfortable for your dog. Don’t forget to pack your camera and cell phone.
Step
3
Enjoy the hike
Once you are on the trail, pull out your camera and snap some Instagram worthy selfies of you and your dog enjoying the scenery. Be sure to keep a close watch on your dog and if they become tired, take a break and give them a drink. Both of you need to stay hydrated while hiking so small drinks throughout the hike is ideal. Once you and your dog have become seasoned hikers, you can venture out into more untamed areas, but when you are first starting out, keep to the trail.
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More Fun Ideas...

Hide and Seek

This is a relaxed way to hone their scenting and tracking skills. Take treats and hide them around your house or backyard and then have your dog seek out the treats. You can also use toys that they love or have your kids hide and have your dog go find them.

Doggie Playdate

Hosting a doggy playdate is a great way to closely monitor your dog’s interaction with other dogs. Dog parks can have an extremely diverse group of dogs, but by hosting a playdate, you can determine the guest list and organize the toys and games that your dog will play. This is an easy and cheap way to ensure your dog gets socialized and learns how to play nicely with other dogs in a structured setting. 

Conclusion

Your Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen has a lot of stamina and will expect to have a job to do. It is your responsibility to find activities that will keep them occupied, wear them out, and give them a purpose. Be sure to do your research on any activity you want to try with your dog and pick the ones that seem to be the best suited for you both. When a Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen does not get enough exercise or become bored, they can become a problem child and be destructive. Keep plenty of toys around the house and plan on spending time each day doing some kind of activity with your dog.