Losing ourselves in the whirlwind of everyday responsibilities, we forget to meet the pet’s basic needs, such as physical and mental activities. Surely everyone knows the saying „tired dog is a happy dog” – and that’s good, because there is a lot of truth in it. The destructive behavior of dogs does not come from nowhere, and their main reason is usually boredom. A walk alone is not enough for a dog. Dogs need obedience training, sports, puzzles, games and chewing stuff that also stimulate them mentally. How to effectively tire your dog? Discover our 4 suggestions!
1. Mental games
Well-known dog trainer and veterinarian Ian Dunbar believes that „mental exercise tires the dog physically more than physical exercise.” It sounds strange, but it makes sense. Use your dog’s intelligence and train his creativity. Dog puzzles will be perfect here. Intelligence toys effectively prevent boredom, as well as tire the dog mentally. The animal simultaneously trains its sense of smell and intellect. However, the delicacies that we put into such gadgets as the ball of flavor or olfactory mat are the perfect motivation for a dog.
If you want to tire your dog effectively, teach him something new. Remember not to stick to the same pattern every day during training – this way you can quickly discourage your dog from learning new things. Make it fun, both for your quadruped and for you. If you would like to learn 5 simple ideas for mental fun for a dog, click HERE.
2. Hide and seek
The rules of this game are extremely simple. What’s more, you certainly know her from her childhood. This game is also ideal for dogs, and will positively affect your bond. You can play hide and seek both at home and on a walk. All you have to do is hide behind something (for starters, when the dog doesn’t know he should look for you, you can call him), and when the dog finds you, reward him with treats. You will see that joy will be endless!
If you suspect the dog will be peeping, you can invite another person to play with the dog and block his view with his body when you hide. It is worth adding that playing hide and seek does not have to be limited to seeking a guardian. The dog can also look for a hidden toy.
3. Dog pumps
If your dog has two well-known commands – „sit down” and „down” – you can start training with him „dog pumps”. They consist in repeating these two commands interchangeably. This is not an easy exercise and initially the dog may be confused which command to perform. Your task is then to guide him (preferably delicacy) to the right position. Be patient and reward your pet for properly done exercise. Remember that the sessions should be fairly short, so that you do not discourage the dog, and over time it will be fun.
4. HIIT – only for dogs with good condition!
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) is a high intensity interval training. It is characterized by short series of effortless exercises alternating with periods of rest or low intensity exercises that have a positive effect on the cardiovascular system, weight loss and fitness better than traditional cardio exercises. Training in the HIIT style does not take much time – about 10-15 minutes, but it can really tire effectively. Also a dog, because it can also be adapted to him!
How to start HIIT with a dog? You don’t have to limit yourself to running or walking, although you can of course intertwine these two activities. Does your dog love to run after the ball? In that case, throw it to him for a minute, e.g. from a steep hill, and then walk with him for 30 seconds. You can also run up the hill together and then slowly descend. And again and again and again … Choose an exercise that your dog likes and even loves. It will make him willing to practice with you. Remember to start with short and relatively low intensity sessions. Let exercise last 10 seconds and rest 40 seconds. Over time, when you notice that your dog’s condition is getting better, you’ll be able to extend the time so that the series of activities are longer than resting.
Do not forget that the dog must have a break from intense exercise – rest days are just as important as training days because they allow muscle regeneration. To start, start with one HIIT session a week, and you can gradually enter three a week. But no more! Before you start exercising, don’t forget to warm up, which may be, for example, a faster walk. After all, the goal is not only how to effectively tire your dog, but also to make him happy.