Activities For Soccer Players With Dogs

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Introduction

You love soccer. You are out there day after day, kicking the ball around. Perhaps you just play recreationally or perhaps you are a professional soccer player but, whatever the case, did you know that your dog loves soccer too? That's right! Even dogs can play soccer and many of them are fantastic at soccer related games. So, grab your pup and get started with one of these activities directed toward soccer players and their beloved pups (that's you!)

Play Soccer

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Hard
30 - 45 min
Items needed
Soccer Ball
Clicker
Treats
Goal
Soccer Field
Activity description

While you already know that you are very good at playing soccer, have you ever let your dog try to play? Now, we're not talking about just having your pup chase around a soccer ball (they probably do that all the time when your ball is left laying around anyway), we are talking about really having your pup play the game. If you are adamant about teaching your dog to play soccer, you should definitely go ahead and try! In fact, it may not be as hard as you think. You can certainly teach your pup how to score that goal and here is how!

Step
1
Head to the field
Bring your dog to the soccer field and bring along a soccer ball, a clicker and some treats. If you have a larger pup, a regular sized soccer ball will be just fine but if you have a smaller dog, consider buying a child-sized ball for them that will be a little more manageable.
Step
2
Kick and click
Place the ball down and when your dog touches it, use the clicker. This will make your dog associate the click sound with touching the soccer ball. Guide your dog down the field and toward the goal, speaking in an excited tone, using a clicker the whole time and making sure your dog pushes the ball forward.
Step
3
Practice and play
Keep practicing with your dog frequently and always use the clicker. Eventually, you will be able to just click your tool and your dog will run for the soccer ball. Also, you soon won't even need to utilize the clicker as frequently as your pup will love pushing that ball around the field with no guidance needed thanks to your praise and training. What a great soccer playing dog!
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Soccer Skills

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Any Day
Free
Easy
30 min
Items needed
Soccer Ball
Poles
Treats
Activity description

To play soccer as a human, you need to have a certain set of skills. Being agile is one skill that any super soccer player has. The ability to change direction on a dime all while keeping control of the ball is something that takes years to practice. Running quickly is another skill needed for soccer. Of course, being able to aim a ball into a goal is an imperative skill of the game. While you may train to perfect all of these talents, why not also train your pup to be adept in them as well? Try these exercises to help your dog gain some great soccer skills while also having fun. The best part is that you can practice with your dog too!

Step
1
Agility posts
Work on your pup's agility by setting up a slalom course. While you can choose to purchase a professional slalom agility set, a few posts in the ground will work just fine. Place the posts in the ground about two feet apart from each other and train your dog to weave in and out around each post as it runs forward. See how fast your dog can get as they race side to side through the course. This will help with their soccer playing for sure!
Step
2
Speed work
Help your dog work on their speed by bringing them for frequent runs. While you don't need to go far, try to add a few sprints into your run to train your dog to race at a casual pace and then burst forward, just as you do when you play soccer. Saving that energy for a quick running explosion is key to playing the game!
Step
3
Aim for the goal
Help your dog work on their aim by having then push a ball forward into a large goal. Stand in the goal and call your dog to come to you as they "kick" the soccer ball. Your pup should run straight toward the goal with the ball! Of course, say "goal" and give your soccer pup lots of love.
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Treibball

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Sunny Day
Cheap
Hard
60 min
Items needed
Soccer Balls or Large Exercise Balls
Soccer Field
Soccer Goal
Activity description

If you have never heard of treibball for dogs, you should definitely look it up, especially if you love soccer and want to incorporate the game into your dog's life. While treibball isn't exactly the same as soccer, it is very similar especially when it comes to canines playing sports. In treibball, your pup with 'herd' or push a bunch of large balls toward a soccer goal, getting all of the balls into the goal as quickly as possible. Does this concept sound familiar? Sounds a lot like soccer, right? Time to start playing treibball! 

Step
1
Get ready
Head to the soccer field with your dog and bring along a few treibballs. The standard game utilizes 12 balls (at least that is how many balls your dog needs to herd in a formal competition); however, feel free to bring two or three to start. If you do not want to invest in the large, standard treibballs, you can also do this activity with regular soccer balls.
Step
2
Herding fun
Place the balls around the field and then guide your dog with commands, treats and a clicker (if desired) to run to the first ball and push it toward the soccer goal. Then, head back for the next ball and push that one toward the goal. Continue until you have all the balls in the soccer goal.
Step
3
Play more
Keep practicing treibball and time your dog to see how quickly they can get all of the balls in the goal. If you feel like your pup is doing really well at treibball, look for a local competition to really test their skills! Who knows, your dog may be the next treibball superstar while you are the next soccer star! It must run in the family!
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More Fun Ideas...

Kick and Retrieve

Teach your dog to bring your soccer ball back to you after you kick it. This way, you can practice kicking the ball far or aiming it toward the goal and not have to chase after it. Your dog gets exercise and you get to play soccer!

Race and Run

Speed is an important part of soccer so take your dog for a run with you. Keep in mind that many dogs aren’t the best runners so start with short quick runs around the block.

Conclusion

By now, you are probably ready to head out the door with your soccer ball and your dog in order to try one of these activities. Who can blame you? They all sound like so much fun! You should also try them all to see which your pup likes best. Whichever game you begin with, just know that you are making your dog extremely happy by including them in an activity that you love. A family that plays soccer together, stays together!