Getting out and taking part in regular activities with your dog boosts your relationship by promoting better communication and gives your dog more opportunities to learn good manners. Dog activities also ensure that your dog gets enough exercise and that you reduce the chance of boredom in your dog which may lead to destructive behavior.
Here are 10 activities that you can do to have fun with your dog:
- Agilityis a sport where a dog handler directs their dog through an obstacle course. The dogs performance is measured by time and accuracy. You can learn agility methods from books and purchase your own practice equipment or you take your dog to an agility training school.
- Assisted Therapyinvolves taking your dog to visit people in health care institutions to provide mental and physical stimulation. You will need you dog to have the right attitude for this activity. Therapy dogs need to be social, calm, tolerant and friendly.
- Disc Dogis a sport where a handler and dog take part in distance and freestyle catching competitions using a Frisbee.
- Flyballis another competitive sport for dogs. Dogs compete in a relay race in teams of 4. Dogs jump over a set of hurdles, step on a spring loaded box which shoots out a tennis ball, catch the ball and return across the hurdles. For more information look at the website: http://www.flyball.org/
- Dog Parksare available in many communities where you can take your dog and let them off leash in a fenced area where they can run and socialize with other dogs.
- Play Gameswith your dog at home for exercise and interaction. Games for dogs include find the treat and follow the leader. For game information go to http://www.wagntrain.com/Games.htm
- Dog Partiesare a fun way to celebrate a major event in the life of your dog by inviting friends and their pets to a party. Parties can be held at home, at a dog day care facility, or at a dog park. Send out invitations, have a doggie cake, play dog games, and even give out doggie bag favors to your guests.
- Group Dog Walksor hikes are organized as charity fundraisers or by local dog walking groups. You can also organize your own walk at a local trail with a group of friends. Make sure you take plenty of water for the dogs and apply sunscreen!
- Dog Water Sportsare a fun activity if your dog is relaxed and comfortable playing in the water. There is an official associationhttp://www.caninewatersports.com that promotes local events and splash dog training.
- Dog Campsare a vacation option for you where you must take your dog. Get away to a unique location and enjoy participating in group dog agility, obedience and games.
Why not take this time at the end of the year to plan how you can get involved in one of these fun activities with you dogs in 2009. It will make their year!