Few things beat a great day of play outdoors with your pet. When inclement weather strikes, you may wonder how you can give your pet the exercise and stimulation they need to thrive. The good news is that there are some great indoor games that you can enjoy with your dog. From learning new tricks to playing hide and seek, you can keep your dog occupied for hours. Below are five pet game ideas to try today.
1) Hide and seek
“It can be fun for you and your dog to play Hide and Seek much like you would with a child. Find a hiding space where your dog cannot see you but can hear you such as behind a piece of furniture…When your dog finds you, you can give him some treats and some praise.” – SPCA of Texas
Hide and seek can provide hours of endless entertainment for you and your pet. Moreover, this game will help your dog sharpen their listening skills and problem-solving skills. There are many ways to play hide and seek, but here is a basic step by step guide that you can follow during your first go-round:
- Step One: Establish a “home base” where your dog will sit while you go to hide. Your dog’s bed is a good choice.
- Step Two: Tell your dog to “Sit” and “Stay” on his bed while you go hide. Make your first hiding spot a fairly easy one to find.
- Step Three: Say “Okay, Come Find Me!” to signal to your dog that it is okay to come and track you down.
- Step Four: Reward your dog when you are “Found.” If your dog has trouble finding you, give some “Hints” in the form of a whistle or noise.
2) Tug of war
Nothing beats a good game of indoor tug of war on a rainy day! Your dog will enjoy facing off with you to become your home’s official tug of war champion. And while you are away from home, your dog will enjoy chewing on their toys to eliminate boredom. DogLab researched dozens of tug of war toys to uncover the top 28 tug of war toys for dogs. Toys on this Top 28 list are deemed to be safe, strong, and enjoyable for dogs of a variety of breeds.
3) Hide the treat
Hide the treat is a slightly different version of basic hide and seek. But instead of hunting for you, your dog will use his sniffer to track down treats that you strategically hide throughout your family room. Hide the treat is a great way to keep your dog’s olfactory senses strong. Just make sure you keep track of where you are hiding the treats or you may end up uncovering a “lost” treat months after your game has ended!
4) Training time
“Patience, praise and rewards work wonders when you are teaching new skills to your dog or trying to reinforce the ones they have already learned. You can also use training cues in any of the indoor games to help reinforce their learning.” – Laurie Darroch, Canidae
Training your dog or cat does not have to be work. It can be a fun way for you to connect with your pet and provide welcome stimulation. Gather a handful of your pet’s favorite treats and start with a short list of commands such as, “Sit”, “Stay”, and “Shake.” Then reward your pet with a treat for mastering new commands and showcasing oldies but goodies.
5) The Name Game
With just a little time and attention, you can teach your dog or cat the names of their favorite toys! Dogs are about as smart as a 2-year old, making the Name Game a great way to learn how to tell their toys apart.
You can get the game started by picking up a specific toy and saying the toy’s name. Then place the toy across the room and say the name of the toy, instructing your dog to retrieve it. You will likely have to provide some guidance during the first few rounds. Be sure to reward your dog for retrieving their toy. You can gradually introduce other toys after your dog masters the first one.
The Bottom Line
When cold or rainy weather prevents you from outdoor fun with your pet, do not despair. The indoor games outlined above will provide endless entertainment for you and your pet. To learn more ways to keep your pet occupied when inclement weather strikes, we invite you to contact us at Little Friends Pet Sitting & Dog Walking. In addition to providing guidance, we can provide valuable pet sitting services to help you keep your pet entertained. We look forward to hearing from you!