There is nothing worse than a bored dog. They jump on you, tear things up and can’t stop chewing on your things. They go from cute to annoying very quickly. Here are some things you can do for your dog to keep him or her busy and occupied throughout the day.
- Peanut Butter – Nothing is better for keeping dogs occupied than a good dose of peanut butter. Peanut butter is sticky, making it a perfect medium to add to dog toys. We have placed peanut butter in Kongs and smeared it over many bones. Due to its fat content, peanut butter should be used as a treat rather than a regular part of your dog’s diet. I will use peanut butter in a Kong if I am going to be gone for an extended amount of time. Canned dog food can be placed in dog toys as well.
- Sockie Toy – Save all of your old socks to build what we lovingly call “sockie toys.” Roll a few socks and stuff them into another large sock. Then tie a knot in each end and use the sock as a toy. If your dog isn’t initially interested, place a treat in the middle of one of the rolled socks. Sometimes I hollow out a piece of carrot and place a treat or peanut butter inside the hole. Then place the carrot in the middle of a sockie toy and watch the dog work to get the treat out.
- Toy Rotation – Just like with children, toy rotation can work with dogs. Hold some favorite toys aside and then place them in a “dog basket” just before you leave the house. Your dog will enjoy digging through the basket for “new toys” while you are gone.
- Milk Jugs – Our dog loves to tear up milk jugs. We place an inch of water in the jug and put the lid back on. The weight from the water makes the toy more fun to play with. When our dog finally gets the lid off, she has “killed the toy.” Be careful though – some dogs may try to chew a lid and eat it. Do not place the lid on the jug if your dog may try this. You can also place dog treats inside a milk jug, leaving the lid off. Your dog will enjoy the challenge of getting the treats out of the jug.