Not all dogs get out and enjoy winter weather like this guy! So, we thought it might be good to post the following article about cabin fever:
Going inside – and staying there – provides physical protection from the elements, but also opens the door to a mental hazard: boredom. A bored dog can wreak considerable havoc on his household in the form of excessive barking, hyperactivity, and destructiveness. Worse still, if the dog’s efforts to relieve his boredom prompt him to partake of poisonous plants or other toxic substances, he’ll need immediate veterinary attention, and you are likely to face a significant bill.
To prevent such occurrences, be sure to dog-proof your home; in other words, put any toxic, hazardous, or other forbidden items beyond your dog’s reach. Then, find ways to provide your dog with plenty of indoor physical and mental exercise. Here are some activities that you and your dog can do together indoors to help the two of you stay sane:
A rousing game of fetch – particularly if it requires your dog to go up and down some stairs a few times – can give him a good physical work out.
As long as you are not having aggression problems with your dog, a good tug session can siphon off considerable excess canine energy. Rules of the game: The person needs to start the game, the person needs to end the game, and most of the time the person needs to win the game.
- Hide the toy:
To give your dog a mental workout, try hiding a toy or treat and then directing him to find it. Hold the item for him to see, then place him in another room so he can’t see where you hide the object. Once you’ve hidden the toy, allow him to come out and look for it. When teaching this game, put the toy or treat in plain sight, gradually increase the difficulty until your dog understands how to look for it.
Source: The Family Dog
A tired dog is a sleepy dog is a good dog. Here is a great collection of some awesome Frisbee dog photographs. Hopefully they will get you motivated to teach your dog “Get it” and “Give” and get the two of you outside and having fun together.
Tossing a Frisbee not your cup of tea? Dogs like to play ball too!
What it means:
Run quickly, and get that thing..
Verbal command – “Get it!” or “Fetch”
Tone of voice – Encouraging, exciting
Hand signal – Point in the appropriate direction
Enforcing the command:
Have your puppy on leash, sitting or standing next to you. In your right hand have something (treat or toy) that your puppy is interested in. Toss the item out in front of your puppy. As you toss it, give the command “Get it!”.
In the beginning, don’t send your puppy out farther than 6 feet or so. As soon as your puppy begins to understand, you can begin to increase the distance.
Do’s and Don’ts:
GO OVERBOARD WITH PRAISE, especially in the beginning. This should be FUN. Motivation will be the key to willing compliance. If your puppy seems unsure, let him sniff the treat or get excited about the toy. The item you use MUST be something your puppy wants.
What your puppy learns:
Cooperation in the context of a game. This command can be used as a reward for good obedience, and lays the foundation for retrieving, tricks, and also helps teach your puppy that active obedience can be fun and rewarding. It also helps to instill greater focus on you, the owner, and is a great way to bond with your puppy.
Written by: Shirley Gibson
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