Activities For Mindful Dogs

1k Views
0 Comments
0 Votes

Introduction

Some dogs like to look before they leap and get very physical with other dogs and humans. Others may not be able to solve complex puzzles and problems on their own. Not the mindful dog; mindful dogs are cool, collected, and calculating. They take their time and move at their own pace, but they tend to be able to solve puzzles just as well, if not better, than most humans. Mindful dogs are the kinds of pets that need to be tested and mentally stimulated on a consistent basis. By working to mentally challenge your dog, you too will likely find yourself becoming that much sharper between the ears.

Toy Pickup

Popular
0 Votes
Any Day
Cheap
Normal
15 - 25 min
Items needed
Dog Toys
Box or Chest
Activity description
The first activity on our list is one that has the potential to make the lives of dog owners all around the world that much easier. Toy Pickup is really just a fancy way of saying "this activity aims to teach your dog how to put their toys away on their own." Repetition and patience are vital to successfully teaching a dog any sort of new trick or skill and there's no exception with this activity. We recommend you start off attempting this activity with only a few toys before moving on to trying to have your dog put away their entire toy collection.
Step
1
Dropping on command
First off, you'll have to teach your dog how to drop an item on demand; to do this, you'll need to let your dog pick up a favored toy of theirs and then get them to release it from their mouth when they hear the command drop it. After they get the hang of dropping on command, try having them drop their toy inside of a box or chest.
Step
2
Cleaning up
After you and your dog get the basics down, you'll want to put them to the test; the next time the two of you finish playing with one another, have your dog pick up a toy and then use the "drop it" command to prompt them to drop the toy inside of their toy box. Repeat this with each of their toys until the play area is nice and tidy.
Love this activity?

Name Games

Popular
0 Votes
Any Day
Cheap
Normal
30 - 45 min
Items needed
Dog-Friendly Household Items
Plushy Toys
Dog Bones
Activity description
While the Name Game may have a negative connotation with humans, this activity has the opposite when it comes to canines; the goal with this activity is to get your dog to start associating certain words with certain objects. The word "fetch" is one they already have come to associate with chasing after an object that you throw, so the idea is to continue growing your dog's vocabulary to extend beyond actions and commands. We suggest attempting this activity by using certain items that you may want your dog to retrieve for you in the future; teaching your dog what the "newspaper" is or where your "slippers" are can help you start your morning much more quickly.
Step
1
Introduction to item
For this step, you'll want to introduce your dog to whichever item you'd like for them to learn the name of. We suggest only introducing one item to your dog a day so that the two of you can spend a good amount of time working on it. So get your dog to sit down someplace comfy and then present the item you'd like for them to learn the name of; if you'd like for them to learn what a newspaper is, hold it in front of your pet while saying "newspaper" very slowly.
Step
2
Follow through
Now that your dog has heard you call that strange, papery item a "newspaper" over and over again, they'll begin to associate that word with the item. Next, you'll need to show your dog where they can find it if you'd like for them to start bringing it to you. Guide your dog to the area where your newspapers are usually delivered to you (for example, the front porch) and then point to the place your papers can usually be found while saying "newspaper" once again. With time and patience, the time will come when you ask your dog to "fetch the newspaper" and they bring it right to you.
Love this activity?

Trixie Chess Interactive Toy

Popular
0 Votes
Any Day
Cheap
Hard
20 - 30 min
Items needed
Trixie Chess Interactive Toy
Dog Treats
Water
Activity description
In our opinion, this dog toy has got to be one of the all-time best ways to provide a worthy challenge to your mindful dog. The Trixie Chess Interactive Toy is one of, if not, the closest ways that you and your dog can ever get to playing a full-blown Chess match with each other! Sold for around $20 USD, the Trixie Chess Interactive Toy is very affordable and comes in multiple stages that are designed to provide added challenges to your dog as they solve each version of this toy with increasing ease. This activity is meant to be attempted by adult dogs, but younger pups are welcome to try so long as they don't risk injuring themselves.
Step
1
Set up the game
While this toy if fairly complex, the general idea is that your dog will need to move a series of sliding parts and cones in order to reach their treats, which you'll have needed to place in the designated areas earlier. It doesn't hurt to have your dog present while you put the treats away, but we suggest putting the treats away without your dog around if they're used to dog treat toys.
Step
2
Let the games begin
After you've set up the Trixie toy, encourage your dog to try and figure out how to get at the goodies inside. This toy was specifically designed to open one way, so brute force won't yield any results here. Encourage your dog to continue taking their time and thinking about what their next move should be. If you sense that your pet is getting too frustrated, take a break and wait a bit longer before attempting this game again.
Love this activity?

More Fun Ideas...

The Cup Game

This age-old activity has a habit of stumping humans despite having been around for a few centuries at this point, but it will provide your dog a great brain teasing activity one way or another. Simple get a hold of three cups, place your dog's favorite treat inside one of them, and then shift the cups around before prompting your dog to choose the cup they think their treat is underneath.

Wooly Snuffle Mat

This activity is very interesting because it recreates the sensation of having to hunt for food in the wild in the comfort of your own home. The idea behind the Wooly Snuffle Mat is that you gather up your dog's favorite treats and you then hide them inside the mat so that they'll have to sniff and scrounge about to find their treats.

Conclusion

Mindful dogs often have trouble finding ways to avoid becoming bored because they tend to figure things out much more quickly than other types of dogs. While the activities listed above will hopefully provide your dog with a reliable means to test their mental abilities, it's worth noting that these activities won't be the end all, be all of your mindful dog's quest to remain mentally stimulated. Therefore, we encourage you to make modifications to the activities listed above and to always try to find new ways to stimulate your dog's mind. In time, you'll likely come to appreciate the challenge just as much as your mindful dog.