…because a tired dog is a good dog, that’s why!
Dog’s need something to do. And if you don’t direct them to what they CAN do…well, guaranteed they will find something. (and you might not be so happy about it!) You can take your dog for a walk or a jog or enjoy a game of fetch, but you can’t be there all the time. Teaching a dog to entertain themselves is part of the process of raising them properly and that is where toys come into play.
Toys allow your dog a way to exercise the mind and the body and thus, alleviate boredom (the nexus for most problem behaviors).
Make sure you give your dog *the right* toys. Toys that aren’t easily destroyed or mistaken for other household items make the best choices. Our preference for chew toys are those made of hard rubber or nylon. These items don’t smell like the other things in your house, they are simple to clean up and dog’s get satisfaction out of gnawing on them for hours.
If you have a preference for giving your dog soft or plush toys but have a problem with them getting dissected, try using toys that have no stuffing like these Bottle Buddies. The dog’s have fun with the crackling sound but there is no stuffing to be constantly picking off the floor.
Avoid giving your dog household or personal items for toys. Things like old socks and shoes are not appropriate toys. We can’t expect Fido to know the difference between the old and the new since it all smells pretty much the same from the dog’s perspective.
If you’re dog shows very little interest in the toys you bring home, add some excitement to the presentation. Rather than just putting the toy on the floor make it a game of “you can’t have it”. This adds an element of intrigue to the new item. Dog’s tend to want what they can’t have…(remember how that puppy loved stealing and running off with your underwear?)…so if you play a little keep away when first introducing the toy you add interest and it becomes much more desirable for your dog to play with that toy!
Toys are commonly an afterthought to your dog’s routine but with the above insights in mind they can be part of a lifestyle that keeps you, your dog and your underwear happier.
Check out this little clip of Diva and her Kong Wobbler.