Activities For Large Dogs In The Yard

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Introduction

Many people mistakenly believe you need to live in the country on acreage to enjoy owning a big dog. However, with most breeds, nothing could be further from the truth. A big dog is often relatively mellow and will thrive in a suburban home as long as the animal has ample things to do in the backyard to stay occupied. When the days start getting longer and warmer, it's a great time to start planning fun backyard activities that you can share with your dog. It will strengthen the bond between you and your dog, plus be fun for the entire family.

Tether Dog Toy

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
30 min
Items needed
Tether Tug Dog Toys
Dog Treats
Activity description
Tether Tug Dog Toys are becoming very popular for large dogs who have a backyard in which to romp and play. The toy consists of a somewhat flexible pole with two or more ropes attached to the end. On the ends of the lines are durable, firm balls. The dog pulls on the tug toys and has a game of tug-of-war all alone. It is an excellent game for a dog who enjoys tugging. The two toy system that is made on this toy makes it a favorite activity for two dogs.
Step
1
Mount the pole
Firmly mount the pole into the ground in a location that affords a bit of shade for your pooch. Make sure that there is ample room for the dog to circle the pole and tug the item in play.
Step
2
Show the dog
At first, your pooch might wonder what the toy is exactly and how to play with it. Some canines might need a bit of encouragement by having you show them it is okay to grab the toy and start pulling. Show the dog how it is done and heap praise on the pooch when the dog starts to play.
Step
3
Give your dog a treat
When your dog starts to tug on the toy offer ample encouragement and praise. You might even want to give your dog a treat for their efforts at playing such a physically strenuous game with the toy.
Step
4
Inspect the tether toy
Inspect the toy often to make sure that the ropes are not being chewed and the pole is holding firm. Many dogs are extremely rough and the toy may start to show signs of wear or break, so inspecting the item regularly will help you maintain it and ensure it lasts a long time.
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Sandbox Digging

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
Children's Sandbox
Sand
Toys
Activity description
Dogs like to dig, and in an effort to keep a large canine from digging up your flowerbed you might want to give them a sandbox to muck around in. You can buy a children's sandbox or you can section off an area of the yard to build your own DIY sandbox out of wood or other building materials. The sandbox will be the dog's private area of the yard to enjoy digging in. Pretty soon your canine will understand that it is acceptable to only dig in the sandbox and not the flowerbed or the lawn.
Step
1
Setting up the sandbox
Use children's sandbox sand because it is extremely fine, and so will not be overly abrasive on your dog's paws. The sand is also sterilized and therefore, bacteria free. Evenly distribute the sand throughout the sandbox.
Step
2
Add toys
Place toys in the sandbox. Ideally, you should hide them so your pooch will enjoy digging up the treasure. You can hide balls, chews, bones, and even food nuggets that your dog will readily sniff out. Placing items in the sand that your dog knows are its own belongings will let the pooch know that the sandbox is a safe place to play and dig.
Step
3
Introduce your dog to the sand
Show your dog the sandbox. Lead your pooch right into the sand and let your dog know that the area is their own private location. Encourage your dog to dig, roll, or simply lay in the sand. Pretty soon it will be your canine's favorite backyard hangout.
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Water Fun!

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Hot Day
Moderate
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
Kiddie pool
Water toys
Treats
Activity description
Most dogs love to dip a paw in the water on a hot day. Even if your pooch is not a real water-loving dog, they will still benefit from running over to grab a cold drink from the pool. Your canine might even want to drop a toy into the water and retrieve it. In fact, you can teach water retrieval using the small pool too. Water activity on a hot day provides tremendous fun for both you and your dog. If you have children, your tots might benefit from the pool also. When picking out a toddler pool, opt to purchase one of the hard, shell type pools and not the inflatable ones that can easily be popped by sharp canine toenails.
Step
1
Pick a location
Pick a location to set up the pool, preferably in a sunny part of the yard where you don't care if the pool kills the grass. Many people opt to place the pool in a gravel area so that excessive mud is not created when the dog plays.
Step
2
Fill the pool and show your pup
Fill the pool with cool water and then show your dog the water. Chances are good that the first thing the dog will do is take a big drink of the crystal clear water. If your canine loves the water, you can expect them to readily start playing in its refreshing depth. If your large dog is not a fan of water then you might have to encourage them to dip a toy by showing them how it is done.
Step
3
Add some toys
Throw a few balls, chews, or a Frisbee into the water. Some dogs will readily jump into the water to retrieve the items but others might need encouragement. Offer your dog incentive to retrieve the toys from the water by providing them with treats and ample love.
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More Fun Ideas...

Tunnels Galore

Dogs are natural den animals. They will seek shelter in cool dark places for rest and play during the heat of the day so why not create tunnels for your canine? You can use old appliance boxes, or you can purchase ready-made tubes made out of canvas material that you can place throughout the yard. Many Terriers adore tunnels to play in. It is not uncommon to see a Jack Russell whizzing through the various tubes in the yard. You can even put toys in the tunnels or treats to encourage your pooch to explore.

Dog Swing

Not all dogs are going to like a tire swing, but many large breeds love it. You can buy dog approved tires at most pet supply stores or online. The tires look just like regular tires, but they are made from safe rubber and contain no toxic chemicals. Hang the tire swing just high enough that your dog can stand up and grab the tire with their mouth. You will be amazed at how many large dogs readily do this and have fun swinging for hours. You might have to give your pooch a bit of encouragement by offering it to your dog so they will readily take the tire into their mouth and start swinging.

Conclusion

Everyone enjoys spending time in a private backyard oasis, and your pooch is no different. Don't let your dog's size fool you into thinking that your behemoth of a canine will not enjoy spending time outdoors in the yard. If you give the dog a few fun activities to enjoy then they will more than likely spend hours outside having fun. You will also get a great deal of enjoyment out of spending time with your dog in your outdoor sanctuary. You can also alternate outdoor activities to keep your pooch interested. You can have a wading pool for the hot days of summer and then switch to a tug toy or tire swing during the fall and winter months. In the spring, why not bring out the tunnels and the sandbox?