Winter Activities That Are Fun for Your Dog - LUV My dogs

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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Winter Activities That Are Fun for Your Dog

  The nights are colder, the days are shorter and your dog's favorite chew toy is buried under ten inches of snow. What a perfect day to play with your dog. While not all dogs care for snow in the same way, they all still need regular exercise to stay fit and healthy for life. Here are few games you can try to help boost your dog's energy and fitness level over the next few winter months.

  Winter weather shouldn't be an excuse to hibernate. There are tons of fun winter activities you can do with your dog - inside and out. If you want a happy dog, give him regular exercise, after all it will be good for both of you! 

Snowed in? Keep your pup stimulated

  Dogs are meant to be outdoors, love being outdoors, live for being outdoors. Keeping your dog well-exercised will help you both keep your sanity. Regardless of the season, professional dog behaviorist Nicola Anderson, suggests daily stimulation for your pet. I often recommend doing some basic obedience exercises with your dog – just about 10 minutes a day.

Play a game with your dog.

  Hide-and-seek is a wonderful way to get your dog up and moving and mentally engaged. You can hide a treat or her favorite toy, but it’s better to make her come find you. Start by throwing a treat to get her to go away from you, and then hide in another part of the house. This game can really tire your pup out as she rushes around searching, and it’s good for reinforcing the “come” command.

Treasure Hunt

  Try burying a stick, toy or even a treat in the snow. Then sit back and watch his natural tracking instinct kick in. For dogs that require a bit of help finding their reward, try hiding the object closer to your dog at first, then slowly burying it further away the better your dog gets at the game.

Skijoring

  Another fun activity is Skijoring, an activity where all that is required is you, your dog, and a pair of skis. Even small dogs will enjoy this outdoor activity.

Cross country skiing is a popular activity all throughout the snowbelt. Bring your dog along to enjoy the experience, and you’ll find he’s just as excited to help pull you along the trail. That’s what Skijoring is all about!

Challenge your dog’s nose.

  Dogs have incredibly powerful scenting abilities, so exercises that require your pal to use her nose are especially stimulating. Make her work for her dinner by creating an obstacle course she has to get through to find her food. Hide her meal in a box, or, better yet, put it in a Kong Wobbler or a Buster Ball.

Fetch, Catch and Beyond

  If your dog loves to fetch or catch rubber balls chances are he will love trying to do the same with snowball. Fair warning dogs really love this game so be prepared to make a large stockpile of snowballs, and be careful not to pack the show too much.

Tracking - Sniff in all that cold winter air and train your dog to track scents.
  Tracking is like a game for dogs...hide-and-seek. Tracking challenges a dog's problem solving skills and keeps their keen sense of smell active. It also rewarding when they successfully track a scent. Call a local trainer or find a good tracking training book to get started.

Tracking - Sniff in all that cold winter air and train your dog to track scents. 
  Tracking is like a game for dogs...hide-and-seek. Tracking challenges a dog's problem solving skills and keeps their keen sense of smell active. It also rewarding when they successfully track a scent. Call a local trainer or find a good tracking training book to get started.

Snow Shoe
  If the snow isn't outrageously deep, you can always have your dog join you for a snowshoe walk. Keep in mind you may have to leash your dog so be aware of the local park or trail bylaws.

  Some popular people activities are simply too dangerous to try to include your dog. While cross-country skiing seems passive and relaxing enough, skis are fun to chase for dogs and your pet may end up injuring himself.


Don’t be a wimp…get outdoors!

  Most bigger dogs love snow, and they can get a great workout by plowing through it. Spend 30 to 40 minutes in the snow, and your dog will get a workout that leaves her exhausted—and her muscles toned. When you come in, be sure to wash your dog’s paws to clean off any salt.



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