What a Dog Needs

October 17, 2012 | By More

Every Day…For Every Dog

How close do you come to providing these daily enrichments for your dog?

Every day your dog needs a walk for physical exercise and mental stimulation.  This is very rewarding for every dog to explore new scents beyond the familiar ones in his own home or backyard.  And it’s important that your dog gets to enjoy this exploration/tracking/sniffing with you at the other end of the leash.  *Running around in the yard is no substitute for a walk.

Most dogs are always ready to play.   A clients will often tell me that their dog is not interested in playing or doesn’t know how to play.  Most dogs are not that interested in playing with toys by themselves.  They want to “play” with someone.  Whether it’s tug, fetch, “find me” or whatever your dog enjoys, you should make a little time each day to play with your dog.  Play is necessary to build a strong bond.  *Wrestling on the floor with a dog may not be suitable play especially for children.

From the time they are puppies, dogs will never tire of chewing.  It’s important to note that a chew is different from a toy.  What we consider to be a chew, is flesh & bone e.g., bully sticks, knuckle bones cows’ ears, etc.  Whatever chews your dog enjoys, try to allow her some time with it each day.   These will be special treats which should not be left around the house, but always come from you.  *As is the case with every chew, they require supervision.

Next time you want to give your dog a special treat, try loading it instead into a puzzle toy.  There are Kongs, Tricky Treat Balls, Tornados, etc.   Not only will the treat last longer, but the stiumlation of the challenge is a great way to expend some excess energy.  *Some dogs are more motivated than others, so you can adjust the level of difficulty for your dog.

Whether you set aside time each day for formal training or just practice good habits throughout the day, dogs need structure.  Teaching them new tricks, or having them heel for a few blocks during their walks, or just continuing the practice of good household manners, are all great ways to help dogs feel confident and good about themselves.  *Everyong in the household should be consistent in all behavioral expectations.

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Category: All Posts, General Interest, Obedience

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