Nowadays, many dog parents live hectic lives between their jobs, caring for their children, and other responsibilities. Thus, many dogs often end up spending their days home by themselves. The idea of your pet being lonely and bored is sad to think about, especially when you keep in mind that such feelings may lead them to find their own ways to pass the time that can damage your clothes and furniture and even be harmful to themselves. However, there are many ways you can keep your dog entertained for hours while you're out and about. Whether you decide to keep your dog busy with toys and games or choose another form of entertainment, there are many ways to keep your pet from boredom. Here's how to keep your dog entertained while at work or elsewhere:
Calm Your Dog
If your dog becomes overactive, nervous, or anxious when you're out of the house, here are some ways to calm them down:
Apply a combination of essential oils to their bedding. This could include eucalyptus, frankincense, lavender, wild orange, and peppermint.
Feed them treats designed for promoting relaxation, such as all-natural calming chews. This may keep them relaxed while they're alone during the day, alleviating any barking that might disrupt your neighbours.
Use a dog pheromone. If you get the feeling that your dog is anxious about being alone, consider using a dog-appeasing pheromone spray, diffuser, or collar. You can put the diffuser in a room that your dog typically occupies, apply the spray to a dog bed, or put the collar around your dog's neck. The pheromone that these products release will feel familiar to your dog, as it is akin to one that a lactating mother emits to calm her newborn puppies and help them feel more relaxed.
Adopt Another Dog
A lot of dogs feel more comfortable having a puppy companion. While it is a big responsibility to adopt another dog, the right brother or sister for your pup can turn into a lifelong friendship. When considering getting a second dog, consider the following:
Getting a dog who is of a similar age and energy level as your current pup
Finding a dog that fits in well with your family and current pup
Make sure you train them and introduce them to your family before you leave the two dogs home alone together.
Many pet adoption agencies will allow you to bring your dog to the kennel to see if they bond with the pet you are planning to adopt before making any final decisions. If you've been wanting to adopt a new dog, maybe now is the time to start searching.
Keep Your Dog Entertained Indoors
Dogs love a nice view so that they can see what is happening out in the world. If the view is elevated, even better! Look for a window with an intriguing picture of the backyard or street. Open the curtains so that your dog has a great view during the day. Set them up with their favourite bed or blanket to motivate them to spend more time there. Dogs can spend hours simply watching the world go by and waiting for you to come home for playtime and cuddles.
Toys to Entertain Dogs
Dog toys are good for keeping your dog entertained and busy while you're at work. There are two facts all experienced dog owners know:
Each dog has their own favourite toys
These toys don't typically last for a long time
As dogs are often pretty rough with their favourite chew toys, you should consider keeping a set of toys to rotate throughout the week. This will increase the longevity of the toys, keeping your dog stimulated with fun and new activities.
Most dogs love scarfing down treats and other food. Thus, disperse some treats in specific places throughout the house before you leave for work. To prevent this from becoming a routine, try to shake things up a little so that your dog will spend the day sniffing for delicious snacks. You can add another level of fun to this game by hiding the treats in puzzle games that your pet can solve. This will require them to use their brain to figure out how to release the treat from the puzzle.
If you cannot find a good window spot for your dog, TV is a great alternative to entertain them. A great place to start is Youtube for Dogs. However, remember that not every dog will be interested in watching television.
Treat-Filled Ice Cube
A fun activity to consider during the sweltering summer months is to freeze a bowl with dog treats and water the night before and leave it out for your dog the next day. The ice will melt throughout the day, revealing the treats and creating a fun game of patience for your dog. Additionally, your pet can speed up the process by licking the ice, which will keep them hydrated and cool on a hot summer day.
Puzzle games are a great way to keep your dog's mind engaged. They normally consist of hiding a treat within a contraption for your dog to manipulate to get to the treat. A popular choice is the KONC chew toy, which comes in a variety of durabilities dependent on your dog's strength and tenacity. Your local pet store will also have a variety of other options.
Keep Your Dog Entertained Outdoors
Hire a Dogwalker
It is becoming increasingly common to hire dog walkers, particularly those living in urban areas. With our hectic schedules keeping us out of the house for long hours, dog walkers can ensure your pup gets the exercise it needs during the day. This will also leave lots of bonding time for you to spend with your pup when you go home.
Drill Peepholes In The Back Fence
If your backyard backs onto something intriguing like a street or bush, then you have a great form of outside entertainment for your dog. You just have to drill several peepholes, as well as muzzle holes, into the fence so that your dog can look out.