Short winter cold days means most of us cut back on outdoor activities and you may be tempted to stray from your pet’s routine activities. That can be a problem for our pets who need lots of active play.
Being “stuck in the house” can affect us and our canine companions too, leading to problematic behaviors like constant barking, chewing on furniture, and even having accidents in the house.
To avoid these problems try keeping your pet (and yourself) active all season long with such activities as:
Taking a walk. Brave the cold and bundle up with a daily walk or run to allow your pet to release excess energy. By having the proper cold weather gear for your pet and yourself; a nice brisk walk in the cold can be refreshing.
Go outside – play. If you have children send them and the family dog out to play. Bundled them up in their snowsuits; kids love playing in the snow and it will help burn off their excess energy as well as your pets. If you don’t have a secure, fenced backyard, take them to the local park.
Use an interactive toy. Can’t get out of the house? Fill a toy such as a Kong with cheese, peanut butter or another favorite treat and pop it in the freezer; or fill a “buster cube” with kibble and give him the toy as you leave the house. Trying to get that hidden treat will give him physical and mental stimulation while you’re gone.
Find a doggie day to camp or engage a dog walker to walk your dog. A great alternative to days alone is to send your pet to doggy day camp, day care or a daily play group. Dogs exercise in a supervised environment and get to socialize with other dogs as well. If that isn’t an option an alternative is to have a dog walker come in daily to walk and exercise your pet, plus it will give them some social time.
These cold winter days and nights doesn’t have to be spend stuck in the house getting restless and cranky. With a few of the above tips you can keep yourself as well as your dogs healthy and happy throughout the season.