Since bored dogs are usually difficult dogs, what should you do on rainy days like this to make sure your dogs aren’t driving you crazy in the house during the holiday season?
1) Treadmill time – if you have a treadmill at home and you haven’t trained your dog to use it, you are missing a big opportunity to drain that physical energy and make your dog happier on cold and rainy days. This doesn’t have the same power as a walk in the actual world, but it is an awesome substitute when a walk isn’t possible.
2) Nose games – it is wonderfully exhausting for a dog to use their nose. The more your dog uses their nose, the more they are acting like a dog. Playing a game of “find it” it in your house or even using a basic dog board game to encourage your dog to sniff will help stimulate your dog’s brain.
If you're in a city that's been hit with heavy snow already, you can get creative like these guys did with their doggy snow maze:
3) Play with a tug toy – I like using tug to teach discipline. Every game of tug is wildly fun for my dog, but for me it is a chance to teach sit, down, leave it, take it and drop it. The reward is built right into the game (playing tug), but is a more fun way to teach than using basic food lures. However, if you don’t have control of your dog, don’t engage in tug right away. Contact me and I will teach you how to turn this game into something useful and fun.
4) Take your dog to the store – If your dog is not aggressive then take it to one of the few stores that will allow dogs. Pet stores are the easiest options for you. They are almost always accepting of dogs and your dog can practice polite introductions to new people and have some good experiences. Lots of stuff to sniff there.
5) Take your dog to daycamp – If you have a dog daycare that you trust, rainy days are a great day to take them. There will be plenty of other dogs there and you won’t have to worry about your dog being bored and destructive. Remember, always be discerning of the dog daycares you take your dog to!
6) Go for a drive – Dogs love car rides and it enables them to see the world. Sometimes just doing something outside of their routine is enough to keep them happy. If you want to go the extra mile, go visit some dog-friendly friends or family members. Facebook and Twitter may be great ways for us to stimulate our minds, but dogs don’t get those sites like we do. Socializing in person is best for your dog!