12 Ways to Keep Your Dog Entertained Indoors
By Sviat Oleksiv | Updated on Mar 21, 2023
Keeping your dog entertained indoors can be a challenge so. To give you some ideas, here we have 12 ways you can keep your dog entertained and engaged while you're inside!
Hide treats or toys around the house and encourage your dog to find them.
All you have to do is hide a treat or toy somewhere in the house where your pup can find it. When they find the item, make sure to shower them with praise and maybe even give them an extra treat.
This game is excellent for your dog's mental health and helps satisfy their instincts to search and hunt, and is an excellent way to bond with them.
Use safe treats for your pup and observe them while they play to ensure their safety.
Set up an indoor obstacle course for your dog to navigate.
Have you ever considered setting up an indoor obstacle course for your furry friend?
You only need household items like chairs, pillows, and boxes to create a fantastic obstacle course for your pup to navigate.
To get started, clear some space in a room where your dog can move around quickly and use different items to create obstacles like jumps, tunnels, and other fun challenges. You can even use treats or toys to motivate your dog and encourage them to complete the course.
You can make a more difficult obstacle course with more items and challenges if you have a bigger space. You can even time your dog to see how quickly they can complete the course and try to beat their previous time.
Teach them a new trick.
I'd love to give you tips on teaching your furry friend a new trick!
It's a fantastic way to keep them engaged and happy while reinforcing good behavior.
First, choose a trick appropriate for your dog's age, size, and skill level. Maybe start with something simple like "sit," "stay," "come," or "shake." Remember to use positive reinforcement, giving them treats, praise, and encouragement when they do well.
Break the trick down into smaller steps so your dog can follow along. For example, to teach your dog to "sit," you can lure them into position with a treat.
Repetition is essential to learning, so practice the trick in short, frequent sessions. As your dog gets better, gradually increase the difficulty level.
Be patient, as teaching a new trick takes time and effort. Above all, have fun with your dog and make training enjoyable!
Play fetch indoors using a soft ball or toy.
You only need a soft ball or toy and a small or medium-sized dog. Just toss the ball or toy to your dog and encourage them when they bring it back to you.
It helps your canine friend burn off some energy, get the mental and physical stimulation they need, and strengthens your bond with them.
To ensure your indoor fetch game is safe, clear the area of any breakable items or obstacles that your pup might accidentally knock over.
Make a DIY puzzle toy.
Want to keep your furry friend entertained and mentally stimulated?
Why not try creating a DIY puzzle toy?
First, gather some clean and dry cardboard boxes, paper towel rolls, or other small containers. Cut a few big holes in them that are enough for your dog's nose or paw to fit through.
Then, place some treats inside the boxes or rolls. You can use small treats, kibble, or bits of your dog's favorite food.
After that, close up the boxes or rolls and let your dog figure out how to get to the treats. They'll have to use their problem-solving skills to figure out how to get their nose or paw inside the hole to retrieve the treats.
You can customize the puzzle to suit your dog's skill level. Make the holes larger or smaller, add more boxes or rolls, or make the puzzle more complex as your dog becomes more skilled at solving it.
Use positive reinforcement when training your dog.
So, when I mentioned training your dog, I meant teaching them new commands or reinforcing good behavior through positive reinforcement training.
It encourages your dog to keep doing good behaviors that lead to rewards. When your dog performs the behavior correctly, immediately give them a treat and lots of praise.
Repeat this process a few times, and gradually make the behavior more challenging by increasing your dog's time to hold the behavior before getting the treat.
Keeping training sessions short and fun for your dog is essential so they don't get bored or discouraged. And consistency is key - always use the same commands and hand signals, and ensure you're always rewarding your dog for good behavior.
Invite other dog owners over for a playdate.
So, number 7 on the list suggests a doggie playdate to entertain your furry friend and a great way to give them socialization, exercise, and stimulation.
Firstly, ensure that the dogs you invite are friendly and have a good temperament. You don't want aggressive dogs ruining the fun and potentially causing fights or injuries.
Ensure ample space for the dogs to play, and it could be a fenced backyard, a dog park, or a large living room or basement. Just make sure to remove any valuable or breakable items from the area.
Next, provide many dog toys and activities, like balls, frisbees, and tug-of-war ropes. You could even create an obstacle course or scavenger hunt for them!
Lastly, supervise the playdate closely and step in if any dogs show aggression or discomfort. And, of course, keep the pups hydrated and happy with plenty of water and treats.
Play tug-of-war to burn off some energy and engage your dog.
It's a super fun and interactive game that many dogs love!
It taps into their instincts to pull and play and is also a great way to give them some exercise and mental stimulation.
To start the game, you'll need a sturdy rope toy or something similar that your dog can hold onto. Offer it to them and encourage them to grab onto it.
If they already got a good grip, gently tug on the other end to create some resistance, then start a back-and-forth game of tug with your dog. Just be careful not to pull too hard and hurt your pup.
Teach your doggies to let go of the toy, stop playing, and avoid playing too aggressively, as this can lead to behavioral issues or injury.
Try playing some calming or upbeat tunes to keep them entertained and relaxed.
Playing music for your furry friend can be calming and reduce their anxiety and stress. Soothing music, like classical tunes or calming melodies, can help promote a sense of calm and relaxation in dogs.
But, if your pup is in the mood to move and play, upbeat music or songs with a strong beat might be more stimulating for them.
When selecting music for your dog, paying attention to their reactions and body language is essential to see what type of music they enjoy the most. Some dogs prefer mellow and calming music, while others might be more into upbeat and energetic tunes.
Experiment with different genres of music and see how your dog responds to each. Music alone is not enough to keep your dog entertained for extended periods.
Play laser pointer to provide some mental and physical stimulation indoors.
It can be super entertaining for dogs, but keeping a few things in mind to keep them safe and happy is essential.
Firstly, be careful not to shine the laser directly into their eyes. It can be harmful and cause damage, so always avoid doing that.
Also, some dogs can get fixated on the laser, and it might be hard to stop playing, which can sometimes lead to stress and anxiety, so keeping the game short and sweet is best.
When you're ready to play, choose a safe space for your dog to run around in. It should be free from any obstacles or hazards that could cause them harm.
Then, turn on the laser and watch your pup go crazy trying to catch the light!
Remember to keep the game fun and mix it up with other activities so they get a variety of play and stimulation.
One last thing to remember is that while laser pointer play can be fun, it should never replace regular exercise and mental stimulation.
Give them a gentle massage to help them relax and de-stress.
A nice doggy massage is a great way to help your pups relax and relieve stress, and it is a fantastic bonding experience for you both.
To get started, find a quiet, calm space, and turn off loud noises. Speak softly to your dog to keep them at ease. Begin by stroking your dog's fur with gentle, slow movements.
Pay attention to how your pup responds, and adjust your technique if they seem tense or uncomfortable.
Next, move on to more focused areas like the neck, shoulders, and back. Use your fingers to apply gentle pressure in circular motions. But be careful not to massage sensitive areas where your dog may have pain or discomfort, like an injury or sore spot.
Finally, finish with some light stretching to help improve your dog's flexibility and range of motion.
Remember, the goal of a dog massage is to provide relaxation and stress relief, so take your time and be gentle.
If you're unsure where to start, consult a professional dog masseuse or your veterinarian.
Provide plenty of chew toys to keep them entertained and help keep their teeth clean.
It's natural for dogs to chew, and giving them safe and appropriate toys is essential to keep them mentally and physically stimulated indoors. Plus, chew toys can help clean your dog's teeth by removing plaque and tartar.
When picking out a chew toy for your dog, you should consider their size and chewing habits and consider switching things up.
So, keeping your dog entertained when you're stuck indoors is super important. They love to be social and active and finding ways to engage them can help prevent bad behavior and even sadness. Luckily, you can do many fun things with your pup inside! Mixing up their daily routine with different activities lets you keep your furry friend happy and healthy, even when the weather isn't cooperating!