We often recommend keeping your dog mentally stimulated during the day if you are away from home. It keeps the dog from engaging in boredom behaviors like chewing, digging, and excessive barking. Here’s an innovative idea to make him or her think about where the next meal is coming from.
Put a few pieces of kibble or treats in some, but not all, of the sections of a muffin tin, then cover every section with a tennis ball. The dog must remove the balls to find the food. S/he can then play with the balls after eating.
Many of our breed guides specify that you must keep your dog mentally active to prevent boredom behaviors such as digging and chewing. If you are having difficulty keeping your dog occupied, you might try making a food or treat dispenser like the one shown here to make the dog figure out how to get his or her food. It is also good for dogs who eat so fast they choke or throw up.
I’ve been enjoying watching #TheVetLife on Animal Planet recently, but I have to comment on something they showed last weekend. Dr. Blue and his wife have recently adopted India, a dog that is, as he describes her, “the size of a horse”. One of their concerns is that the dog is eating their woodwork and has punched a hole in their bedroom wall. Their solution was to hire a trainer, who appears to do a great job, using positive rewards such as food and affection to train India to sit, stay, lie down, etc. However, no amount of obedience training is ever going to cure destructive behaviors in the house. Continue reading Commentary on #TheVetLife→
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