Yes, your dog can get bored! Just like you and me, dogs like to be entertained and can get bored of the same routine or activities over & over again. However, unlike us, they are restricted to what they have to amuse themselves with. It is your job as the pet parent to watch for signs of boredom and fix it!
Look For Signs of Boredom
The first step towards fixing canine boredom is to identify it! Most dogs will act out when they are bored in an attempt to get your attention. Dogs are usually not hesitant to let us know they are bored, keep an eye out for whining or pacing back and forth. It is not uncommon for dogs to exhibit destructive behavior when bored, such as digging, chewing and loud barking. If these sound familiar, you may have a bored dog on your hands! Now that you have identified the problem, how can we resolve?
Stick to a Schedule
Believe it or not, dogs thrive on a schedule! Keeping your dog on a daily routine is a simple and effective way to train your dog when its time for play, and when it is time to unwind. Feeding at the same time every day will keep your dog from wondering when he or she will get their next meal. This translates into boredom because when there is a set routine in play, your dog will not be getting anxious about when the next time he will be entertained.
Obedience training is a fun and effective activity you and your dog can do together. Not only will this keep your dog (and you) entertained, you will be teaching your dog useful skills and good behavior. Start with simple commands like "sit", "stay", "lay down" and "come", then move on to more advanced commands, like "leave it!" or "go now!". It is important to not rush your dog, the experience should be a stress-free activity for both parties to enjoy. Click here to view instructions on how to train simple commands. For basic command and obedience training, Pisces recommends: Clix Two Tone Whistle.
Interactive toys will give your dog plenty of entertainment while you are at work or away from home. Wondering what qualifies a toy as interactive? Dubbed "Boredom Busters", an interactive toy is a step above a plain ball or rope toy, offering rewards for mental stimulation. A hollowed out ball with small holes filled with treats is a great example. Your dog can smell and hear the treats trapped inside the ball, and must figure out how to claim the reward. Pisces recommends: Outward Hound Treat Tumble. Interactive toys can vary in difficulty, from simple ball rolling to connecting pieces of puzzles. If your dog seems bored with treat balls, offer a more challenging toy!
Oh yea! Dogs love to exercise! Not much can top a trip a nice dog walk or a trip to the local dog park. A long walk or exercise time should be included in your pups daily routine. Of course, you may not always have time in your day to spend an hour or two with the dogs outside. Allow supervised play time in the backyard for your dog to burn off all its excess energy. Pisces recommends: AFP Hyperfetch Automatic Ball Launcher to provide your dog with endless hours of exercise and mental stimulation. For indoor exercise, tossing toys up and down the stairs is a great way to burn energy. When the weather is too cold for outdoor activity, bring your dog to Pisces for a nice walk up and down the aisles!