Activities For West Highland Doxies

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Introduction

The West Highland Doxie is a hybrid dog that is truly the best of both the parent breeds. If you've heard the phrase "dynamite comes in small packages," then you will have some insight into the lively personality of the West Highland Doxie. A cross between the West Highland White Terrier and the Dachshund, this very intelligent dog needs not only physical activity, but mental stimulation as well. This means that you should not only provide them with a daily walk, but you should also engage them in games that keep their minds sharp. You might set up games of hide and seek, or play "magic cups." You can't go wrong with a rambunctious game of fetch, either. The possibilities for fun are endless where the West Highland Doxie is concerned.

Walking

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Sunny Day
Free
Easy
30 min
Items needed
leash
doggy waste bags
bottled water
Activity description
The West Highland Doxie is full of energy, but, with their very short legs, you will need to plan exercise in several short sessions per day. Walking is perhaps the best aerobic exercise for your little pup. It requires no cash outlay, no extensive warm-up, and you can do this exercise without much preparation. Furthermore, it is low-impact, so you need not worry about walking having an adverse effect on the joints of your furry friend. You can walk in your neighborhood, the city park, or the dog park. In addition, the West Highland Doxie will enjoy walking because this is a time to bond with you! An activity that can be done any time of day, your companion will never refuse a stroll about the neighborhood.
Step
1
Introduce the leash
Before you can ever really begin an exercise regimen that includes walking, you will need to work on leash training. You will want to begin this indoors before you ever attempt to go to the park for a walk. The West Highland Doxie should wear a harness. It's best to fit this on the Doxie from a young age so they will become accustomed to it. Attach the leash to your pup a few times a day and ask them to come to you. Gently pull on the leash. This will prepare them for walks outside.
Step
2
Practice in the backyard
You should never take Fido to the dog park or city park without ensuring they are leash-trained. Take some opportunities to practice in your backyard before going out in public. Work on allowing your pup to be off-leash and commanding them to come to you. Be sure to reward good behavior with a treat and praise.
Step
3
Begin the trek
Begin your walk at a steady pace. With a West Highland Doxie, you will want to rest every ten to fifteen minutes and allow them the opportunity to explore their surroundings. Have bottled water handy to re-hydrate and start the walking session again. Practice commands like stop and heel, rewarding your dog as you move along. Take the opportunity to head to the park for a few minutes socialization before heading home.
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Indoor Fun

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Any Day
Cheap
Normal
45 min
Items needed
an old shoe
tennis ball
Activity description
Sometimes you'll need to provide indoor activities for your West Highland Doxie. After all, this clever dog needs a daily purpose - their heritage made it so. Diggers and hunters at heart, they love to be busy. Purchase small tennis balls for a game of gentle indoor fetch. You can also engage your intelligent pooch in a game of hide and seek using an old shoe. If you wish, you can also morph the hide and seek activity into a game of magic cups. Fill a treat ball with goodies. There are many engaging, yet inexpensive things you can do with your dog when the weather doesn't accommodate outdoor fun.
Step
1
Fetch
Certainly, playing fetch generally comes naturally to the West Highland Doxie, but you'll need to ensure that your dog understands a couple of commands before play. You'll also want to make sure that, if your dog inherits the elongated spine of the Doxie parent, you do not allow for overly rambunctious play that may injure them. Teach your dog to "give" you the ball, and insist on breaks from play every ten minutes or so.
Step
2
Magic Cups
The West Highland Doxie's pedigree involves dogs that were originally hunters. The Dachshund parent breed is renowned for their sharp nose. Couple this with great intelligence and you have a pup that needs mental stimulation as a house dog. Grab three solo-style cups (they should be opaque). Place a smelly treat under one cup. (You might want to allow Fido to see you do this at first.) Tell your dog to "find it," and heap praise when they do.
Step
3
Hide and Seek
This is a fun indoor game for both of you. Grab an old shoe (really, an old object that you don't mind getting chewed is acceptable). Allow your West Highland Doxie to smell the item. Then have them watch as you "hide" the item (at first, leave the shoe partially visible). Tell Fido to "find it," and praise them when success is achieved. Increase the challenge next time by hiding the shoe completely out of sight.
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Obstacle Course Fun

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Any Day
Cheap
Normal
1 hr
Items needed
agility poles
scented items
old towels, pillows, or blankets
Activity description
One very fun and interactive activity for both you and your West Highland Doxie is an obstacle course. This doesn't have to be a full-fledged obstacle or agility course such as you might see in a dog fitness competition, but one that is based on the strengths of the West Highland Doxie. That old shoe that you play Hide and Seek with? Utilize it in this game as an "obstacle" to be completed. Set up a pile of old towels with a treat underneath and command Fido to dig for the treasure. Set up an old broomstick on two empty paint cans and have your pooch "jump" over it. The options are endless, and you're sure to get a chuckle watching your dog complete this fun adventure.
Step
1
Gather the items
Because this obstacle course is of your design, you can choose just which items you'd like to incorporate. For the "dig" station, grab some old towels, pillows, or blankets that you don't mind possibly getting damaged. Get an old shoe or another item that can be used for scenting. Create a station in which your West Highland Doxie can "jump" such as a broomstick placed across two paint cans. Make at least four "stations" for your dog to complete.
Step
2
Practice the game
Although the West Highland Doxie is a very smart pooch, you will still need to show them what the game entails so that they can properly play. This is where a knowledge of a few commands comes in handy. Some commands the dog will need to already know. You will have practiced "find it" with Magic Cups and Hide and Seek. You will have to teach them to "jump" and "dig." Sometimes teaching the commands is just as fun as the actual game itself.
Step
3
Play often
Once the West Highland Doxie learns how to play, engage them in completing the obstacle course at least twice a week. Change up the obstacles from time to time so that your furry friend doesn't become bored. Try to always keep a "smelling" and "digging" station, however. These are two of the prime instincts of your pet, and allowing them to play these impulses out will keep your pooch out of mischief.
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More Fun Ideas...

Play Together, Play Often

The West Highland Doxie craves attention from their human family. This means that you should engage in activities that are interactive. Whether you play tug-of-war, chase, or just sit together on the couch, invite your dog to spend time with you each day.

Beach Dig

The Dachshund parent breed was developed to dig deep into holes after small prey. Thus, digging remains a fun pastime for the West Highland Doxie. Head to the beach and allow your little digger to explore to their heart's content.

Conclusion

The West Highland Doxie is a lively, loyal, loving little pup that will enjoy any activity that pairs the two of you together. Walking is often the best low-impact exercise for them; however, you can still be somewhat rambunctious together. Engage them in a game of fetch or tug-of-war. Set up a fun obstacle course. Work on commands. Any of these activities make for a happy pooch and a happy pet parent.