Activities For Welsh Smooth Fox Terriers

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Introduction

The Welsh Smooth Fox Terrier is a hybrid mix of the Welsh Terrier and the Smooth Fox Terrier - the keyword in that description is “terrier"!  Thanks to the "terrier” contributions from both sides of the bio-equation, this canine companion may be small, but positively not sedate, quiet or insignificant.  Your active, intelligent, courageous ball of energy loves to keep busy, doing so whether engaged in planned or unplanned activities.  Their high energy, prey drive and intelligence emphasize the importance of assuring your pet is appropriately and regularly exercised to avoid those annoying and destructive behaviors that we’ve all experienced in our bored best buds.  It is to this end that we provide suggestions for embracing all of that exuberance and curiosity, harnessing it for good instead of mischief. Let’s talk about some activities to expend some of that physical and mental energy effectively.

Sandbox Digging

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
20 - 30 min
Items needed
Sandbox or wood
bags of sand
toys
treats
Drinking water
Activity description

Your Welsh Smooth Fox Terrier inherits the tendency to dig from both sides of the gene pool. Both parent breeds were bred for a variety of hunting purposes, usually relating to control of rodents and other similar sized vermin in the locales where they lived.  These activities, initially done both above and below ground, frequently required a good deal of digging to rout and flush prey from their dens and lairs.  Accordingly, your dog can’t help the fact that they enjoy playing in the dirt, not particularly caring if that dirt is in your flower bed, vegetable garden or newly planted grassy areas of the backyard. The best way to control this instinct is to provide an appropriate place for them to dig: a sandbox.  Not a lot of space is needed, but materials to build a box or purchase one are requirements. Once in place, playing in the box will come naturally!

Step
1
Build the box
Determine where you’d like to place the sandbox. A place under an existing roof would work well for those rainy days, or choose a pleasant place in the sun. If you opt to build the box yourself, there is likely a trip in your future to the local DIY store to purchase the materials (wood or PVC planks or boards are great) for the box and the sand required to fill it. For those who would prefer to buy a commercially made sandbox, those can be found in the toy section of most department stores or at your local pet store, quickly set up in the chosen location. Position it as desired, and fill it with sand to the preferred level.
Step
2
Bury the booty
Now, you need some doggie toys and treats. At first, it is recommended to bring your dog to your side to watch as you bury the toys and yummies. As you might have already wondered, the toys probably should be plastic or vinyl ones, easily washed off if they are to be carried back into the house. Your Welsh Smooth Fox Terrier is a quick-study, probably needing some restraint while you bury the items to avoid retrieval before you’re ready.
Step
3
Doggie digging
Allow your best bud to watch, step back and let them loose to track and dig out those treasures. They will dig with the utmost delight, retrieving their favorite playthings and yummy snacks, slinging sand in all directions as they do what comes naturally. As they progress in the learning curve of this game, you could ante up the stakes a bit by burying their booty before you call them to your side. Their sensitive noses will take the lead quite quickly!
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Fetch the Toy

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Any Day
Free
Easy
15 - 20 min
Items needed
toys
snacks
Drinking water
Activity description
Fetch the toy is a game all dogs love to play, willingly chasing any moving object, whether living or not.  This game, played indoors or out, in any weather condition is about as natural as it gets.  The steps are pretty straightforward for the fetch and retrieve part - you throw the toy, and your canine pursues it.  The "picking up and returning it to you" part is where things may get a little more complicated, requiring a bit more training and patience from you.  You see, while chasing anything that moves may be an instinct for your Welsh Smooth Fox Terrier, once caught, giving the item away isn’t!  You’ll need to do a bit of training to accomplish this step.  The average pet owner probably already has dozens of toys for their frisky friend and keeps a stock of yummy doggie snacks in the pantry, making the cost of this game minimal.  Since it can be done inside or out and played by any member of the family, the weather outside is a moot issue.  And, the time spent bonding with your precious pet is priceless!
Step
1
Scope your space
Fetch the toy, played indoors or out, is a game that you determine the amount of space you’ll need. You’ll need to take care to remove breakable items which could become dangers to you and your pet. The activity is possible in the comfort of the living room, while you sit nestled on the sofa if you so desire. You control the pace and intensity of the exercise by how far and how hard you toss the toy.
Step
2
Toss the toy
Getting your pup to chase the toy comes naturally, but releasing it to you may not necessarily be the case. If you need to train your canine to bring it back and release it into your hands, try these steps: allow them to sniff and check out the toy while you’re holding it, then drop it in front of them with a command to “fetch.” When they pick up the toy, encourage them to release it into your hand, praising and rewarding them when obedient to your command. After several repetitions, toss the toy a little distance away, with the same commands, praise, and reward when they obey. As your pup catches on, increase the range of the toss, being sure only to reward when they are successfully obedient.
Step
3
Reward, re-hydrate, repeat
The joy of watching your best bud run and jump with delight as they chase and retrieve the toy will warm your heart. These feelings are especially so when you consider the annoying habits that could develop from the buildup of all of that energy. As you're in control of the pace and the intensity of the game, you have the power of pausing the play to allow your Welsh Smooth Fox Terrier a chance to rest and re-hydrate. Keep your sessions shorter, allowing for rest and re-hydration breaks to avoid overtiring, overheating and overeating. Plan play periods of 15 to 20 minutes with frequent rest breaks to get the most out of this exercise.
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Nose Work

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
15 - 30 min
Items needed
4 to 6 cardboard boxes with lids
treats
Drinking Water
Activity description

Your best bud has a nose that doesn’t know when to quit.  You’ve probably noticed this while walking in the neighborhood, especially when a small animal is in the vicinity.  This hybrid gets the trait of scent tracking from both parent breeds, so they can’t help chasing the neighbor’s cat or that squirrel that had the nerve to run up that tree right in front of them!  Since their noses are so dominant, why not utilize those same noses in the exercise regimen employed in your home?  Nose work is a term that covers many variations of the same theme such as canine search and retrieve (or rescue).  In this case, we suggest that your dog seek out some yummy snacks or toys from their hiding places inside otherwise empty cardboard boxes.  Because you control the size of the containers, you also control the space needed for the activity.  The required “equipment” is quite simple - your dog’s nose, empty boxes and something to hide.  This game, played indoors or out, in any weather condition, is cheaply done and tons o’ fun for your pawed playmate.

Step
1
Assess the area
You have control over the space needed for this activity. This nose work exercise, played indoors or out, is adjustable to meet weather, space and time conditions. It is something you can play anytime, day or night, the weather outside notwithstanding. The size of the chosen boxes will determine the amount of play space since you’ll need probably about 6 of them. Set up the play area by arranging the containers, so there is some distance between them, this adds a degree of challenge to the game.
Step
2
Stash the snacks
The first step is to isolate or distract your pooch in another area while you set up the play space. Choose several boxes (not all of them) in which to hide the yummies for your pet. Be sure to close the lids on all of the boxes. Predetermining the number of snacks to be used in this endeavor ensures that your furry friend doesn’t overeat.
Step
3
Call your canine
Once the treats are hidden in the appropriate boxes, call your canine to your side. Offer a treat to them, allowing some sniffing, a lick or two, and maybe even a little nibble to entice them. Once you have their total, undivided attention, tell your pup to find the treats. The reward comes immediately upon “rescue” of the treat from its hiding place. Once they “rescue” the snack, you can follow along behind them and re-bait the boxes as desired. Be sure to pause the play periodically to allow your nosy pup to rest and re-hydrate, because searching and hunting is hard work!
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More Fun Ideas...

Bubble Burst

Non-toxic bubble solution, either commercially made or homemade, becomes the vehicle for the creation of hundreds of bubbles with the wave of your hand!  The commercial solution has a wand attached to the lid of the bottle that you dip into the solution and swirl through the air.  Bubbles emerge, floating on the air currents while children (or your pup) chase them excitedly.  Of course, the bubbles burst upon contact with anything, making catching them impossible - but then, that’s the point of the game!

Fling the Frisbee

Fling the Frisbee is a game that almost all dogs love.  Terriers are especially fond of any enterprise that involves chasing a moving object!  The Frisbee disk, available for purchase at any toy store, is flung away from you in an arcing motion.  It is doubtful that you’ll need to tell your pup to fetch it, but getting them to release it into your hand may take some patient training.

Conclusion

Managing the energy of that little ball of fire which is curled contentedly in your lap is essential for their excellent health, as well as the happiness of the entire household.  Your Welsh Smooth Fox Terrier is an intelligent, busy little dog, who loves their family, and will protect them as would a much larger canine.  These suggested activities are provided to help you channel those physical and mental energies in a way that is positive and not fraught with mischief.