Activities For Silky Jacks

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Introduction

The Silky Jack is a small energetic little dog that has a happy personality and a willingness to learn. Because they are playful with an abundance of exuberant energy, they require regular exercise but also benefit from a variety of activity in their day. Any dog will get tired of the same old routine day after day, so try to vary their schedule with a few new games, some different training exercises or tricks that test their physical and mental ability. The Silky Jack is naturally obedient, very smart and learns quickly. Make them feel important by teaching them to pick up their toys and put them in a basket at the end of each day. Or, you could make them work for their meals. Rather than just putting down a plate of food at dinner time, give them a food dispensing toy that they have to shake, rattle and roll to get their food out of. This activity means that they will have to work to get the goodies, which is better for their digestion. There are many ways that you can add fun and mental stimulation to your little rascal's day. Read on for a few ideas that your Silky Jack will love you for.

Ring the Bell

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
30 - 60 min
Items needed
small bell
length of thin rope or a ribbon
Activity description
This game is a useful tool for a young Silky Jack that can sometimes make a few mistakes about going out for a bathroom break. Often, a pup will get busy with the family and underestimate the need when it arises. Or maybe they try to show you that they want to go out but you don't realize what they are trying to tell you. Teach them to ring a bell so you can hear it wherever you are in the house. Now you may think that they will be ringing it all the time, even just to go outside for a game. But you can get over this by paying attention to the times your dog goes out. If it is a false call they get nothing and you take them inside immediately. When they go outside and do their business, make a huge fuss of them and give them a small treat. They will soon understand that the bell is for 'business' and you will have no more accidents in the home. It is also fun teaching them to use the bell.
Step
1
Set up the bell
First of all, set up the bell near the handle of the outside door. Tie it firmly to the door handle so that your dog can't knock it off. Use the rope or a thick ribbon to secure the bell. Then, use a training stick to point to the bell and encourage your dog to reach up and touch the bell. Give them a treat when they do.
Step
2
Touch and the door opens
At first, just teach your Silky Jack to go and ring the bell for a treat. Then stay nearby and when they go and touch the bell on their own, tell them how good they are and treat them. Eventually, introduce the bell touch whenever you take them outside - the open door is the reward.
Step
3
Getting into the flow
It will take a few days for your dog to get used to ringing the bell to get the door to open. Really praise their efforts as this trick will make your life much easier. No more cleaning up after an accident. It will also empower your dog as they will get such positive feedback from it. If they try to use it to just go and play, then be kind but bring them back inside and don't praise them. Your Silky Jack will soon learn.
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Park Lunch

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
1 - 3 hrs
Items needed
Lunch basket and blanket
Balls and tug toy
Doggy Waste Bags
Activity description
Use the internet to find a park near to where you live that you haven't taken your dog to before. Going to the same park can wear a bit thin for your dog after a while. Taking them somewhere new, with fresh scents and sights, will really get them interested. Park play provides a good social outing where your dog can meet others on neutral territory; they can also explore new surroundings and smells. At first, your Silky Jack will just want to investigate every bush, tree and plant, so give them time to look the park over. When they have satisfied their curiosity, initiate a game of fetch the ball or even have a tug of war tussle. Get physically active and busy. When they tire (eventually) set out the blanket and get ready for lunch. Like a homing pigeon your dog will appear at your side, eager as a beaver for some chow. A change of scenery can breathe life into any dog, whatever their age. So add some variety, go visit a new park!
Step
1
Do your research
Go online and search for a park near you that you haven't been to before. Make sure dogs are welcome and research the leash rules. Find out whether the park has separate enclosures for big and small dogs. Check for availability of shade and whether there are sources of water for fun play. Prepare the lunch for tomorrow for yourself and include some special treats for your dog.
Step
2
Load and go
Load the car with everything you need from the lunch goodies to the dog toys. Don't forget your dog! Your Silky Jack may need a booster seat so that they can watch and smell the scenery go by. Most dogs get so excited on a car trip, it's as if they know there will be fun at the end.
Step
3
Let the fun begin
Let your dog explore this new park before adding a game or two of fetch or tug of war. Then, set the 'table' on the grass for lunch. This will initiate your dog's undivided attention. Indulge in some yummy treats, a few cuddles and just relax and watch the world go by. Have a final wander around the park and toss a stick or two for your dog to fetch before heading home.
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Music Events

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
1 - 2 hrs
Items needed
Water bowl and water
Treats
Doggy Waste Bags
Activity description
All over the country, special events for dogs are springing up. Listening to music is a popular pastime and many venues are open to people and their dogs. The music is designed to be kind for the dog's sensitive hearing - you don't want heavy metal music!. The events are a gathering of people and dogs, which makes an ideal socialization outing. Your Silky Jack will learn from watching other dogs, interacting with them, and just from being in an area with a lot of people and distracting noises. If they are nervous, reassure them constantly and praise them for their bravery. Don't overdo it for the first music event. When they get tired take them home.
Step
1
Find an event
Go online to research or ask at the dog park to see if you can find a "music for dogs" event near you. They are now becoming very popular as a way of encouraging people to enjoy an outing with their canine friend. Once you have your tickets, start planning for the event.
Step
2
Music and your dog
How excited your dog will be to be going somewhere with you! Make sure you have your dog on a leash and pack a few doggie bags for toiletry needs. Always clean up after your dog, it is only polite. Reassure your dog as you take your place and let them greet other dogs and people.
Step
3
Enjoy the experience
Whether the event is during the day or in the evening, settle in for a relaxing musical hour or two. Allow your dog a few breaks and have a water bowl full so they can drink at will. When the event is over, make your way casually back to your car, giving your dog time to sniff and greet again. By the time you get home, your Silky Jack will just want to crawl into your lap for a snooze.
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More Fun Ideas...

Lake Visit

If you live near a lake, you have the perfect opportunity to take your dog for a visit. Not only will the car trip be fun for your dog with all those interesting smells, but the lake will be a great place for exploration. Lakes have shallow edges which are perfect for a small dog like your Silky Jack to paddle and 'fish' in. Perhaps you can throw a ball in the water for them to retrieve. Give your Silky Jack time to sniff each bush and greet other dogs. A lakeside visit is a good opportunity for socializing your dog and will wear off some of their abundant energy.

Slalom Weaving

This activity is ideal for the energetic Silky Jack, and they will learn it quickly. Start with four of five training slalom poles (these will bend if your dog runs into them). Hold a treat in front of your dog's nose and entice them to move slowly, weaving in and out of the poles. Give them the treat at the end. Then once they get the idea, you can speed it up. Finally, you can get them to sit and stay, while you walk to the end pole, then call them to come.

The Army Crawl

Start by getting your dog to lie down. Hold a treat firmly in your fingers close to your dog's face so they can smell it and even lick it but cannot take it from you. Holding it in front of their nose, slowly drag it away from them. The aim is to get them to crawl after it. If they do, praise and reward. Try to get them to crawl a longer distance. If they stand up, just remove the treat and gently get them to lie down again. Once they have mastered the trick, command your dog to lie down approx. 10 feet away and command them to crawl to you.

Conclusion

The experts say that a dog who has an interesting day keeps away from mischief. It is when a dog gets bored and goes looking for something fun to do, that trouble arises. What they find to amuse themselves may not be pleasing to you: huge holes dug randomly all over your previously well-managed lawn, or the stuffing pulled out of your pillows. But a Silky Jack doesn't do this type of activity to upset you, they don't think like that. They do it because they crave something to do. So before they start going down that slippery slope, head them off at the pass with a pile of interesting games or activities each day.