Top 6 Ways To Exercise Your Doggie Indoors
As you know, it is very important for a sound mental and physical health to exercise daily our dogs, preferably outdoors so they can move around more comfortably. But sometimes because of bad weather, we’re obliged to stay put inside the house. That doesn’t mean, however, that you can’t do anything to exercise your pooch indoors. In fact, a 15 minute activity requiring mental stimulation can be just as efficient as regular exercise! Here are the Top 6 activities you can do inside the house to exercise your dog:
1- Dog Training/Trick Learning
There’s of course the essential training like come, and sit or down, but you can also dedicate some time home to teach the dog some more advanced commands such as fetching, rolling over; or taking a pretty stance. This also has the notable benefit of enhancing that special bond you have with your dog, not to mention you can boast showing off these awesome tricks!
To help you, there are some dog training books or even training DVDs you can use. Dedicate 15 to 20 minute sessions, not too long, and it’s also good to end the session by congratulating the dog, even if he/she fails to learn a new trick; maybe by going back to a previous one so that the dog can keep spirits high and look forward to another session.
2- Dog Puzzles
There exists games and puzzles specifically designed for a dog to solve. Such puzzles include a treat dispensing toy that requires some simple solving, or a bit more complex puzzles that require problem solving skills. It has been proven scientifically that for dogs to mentally make use of their cognitive skills is by far more energy-taking than the same amount of time used for physical exercise! So puzzles would really provide a perfect indoor exercise for that tail-wagger of yours. It is recommended to start first with the easier puzzles, and then gradually make it more difficult, so as not to frustrate the dog too much and as a result would be unwilling to play anymore.
3- Hide and Seek + Scent Games
Hide and seek and scent games are fun, confidence boosting activities for your dog. To play, let the dog see you toss some dog treats (soft and meaty are the best kind!) and when he/she goes to eat them, place a command such as “go find it!”. After a few turns like that, you can then place the treats in more remote places, where the dog will have to use his/her nose-smelling skills to retrieve the treats upon hearing your command. You can help the dog by standing near to the hiding place for example. Other alternatives to treats could be a big bone, a toy,a chew treat, or even yourself!
4- Tug Toys
Play the tug of war game with your dog by having both of you pull some pretty solid tug toys in opposite direction. It has to be a durable toy that can resist to hard pulling. This will make use for an energy-consuming physical activity for the dog as well as yours!
5- Indoor Agility Course
With some inflatable or free-standing portable agility equipment, you can build a course for your dog to exercise his/her agility skills indoors. It can be some sort of tunnel that you can store easily in a closet when unused. You can also add obstacles such as cushions, etc for your dog to make things more fun and exciting!
For the ultimate physical exercise, there are treadmills specifically designed for dogs, with adequate safety measures. Human treadmills are not exactly suited for dogs and does constitute an injury risk for them; so if you live in a somewhat constant bad weather environment, maybe you could consider in investing on a doggie treadmill for your loved pet.