Most of us with dogs already know that a tired dog is a good dog.
But in the dog days of summer, it's harder to tire them out. It may be too hot for long runs or walks, and your dog may not want to play fetch as much when the temperature soars above 85 degrees Fahrenheit. This means you need a new way to keep your pooch entertained until fall rolls around.
Luckily, these ten games can help you bond with your dog while keeping him cool and entertained. Plus, they're great for training since many require concentration and some are even mentally stimulating.
I've included links to detailed instructions for each game so you can learn how to play them at home. For most of these games, all you need is a few inexpensive supplies from your local pet store!
Summer is one of the best times to get outside and enjoy the warm weather with your four-legged friend. These fun games can help you bond with your dog and provide entertainment for both of you.
This game involves tossing a Frisbee to your dog, who will then fetch it and bring it back to you. Frisbees are sold at many pet stores, but if you don't have one on hand, you can always improvise with something else. Dogs love to run around and chase things, so this game is a great way for them to burn off some energy. It's also a great way for them to exercise their bodies and minds!
Going for walks is another fun game to play with your dog. This has many health benefits, as well as being a great bonding activity! You can take your dog on walks at any time of day or night, depending on what works best for both of you. It's also important that they get plenty of exercise during these times since dogs tend to be more active than people when they're outside playing around in nature!
Go for a bike ride.
Biking with your dog can be a great way to exercise both of you, but remember to keep them safe by using a special bicycle leash that attaches to the back of your bike or getting a bike trailer for dogs.
Play fetch at the park or beach.
Fetch is one of the most popular games around, and it's easy to see why! Your dog will never get tired of chasing after a ball, frisbee or other toy, so it's the perfect outdoor activity for any season. You can even make it more fun by playing water fetch if you're near a lake or ocean (just be sure they know how to swim first).
The Fetch Challenge
All you need is a ball, or any other object that your dog can chase after and retrieve. It's recommended to use something small so that your dog doesn't get too excited when they catch it.
If your dog has never played fetch before, start off with something soft like a tennis ball or stuffed toy so that their mouth isn't hurt by something hard hitting them.
A great way to get started is by throwing the toy in front of them while saying “fetch” or any other word you want them to associate with retrieving objects that are thrown away from them such as “go get it!”
Once they start chasing after whatever object has been thrown, give them praise such as petting or even giving them treats if they do well at bringing back whatever was thrown out into the yard!
Tag With Your Dog
This game is a lot like tag, but you're it! You'll want to play this in a large enclosed area (like a backyard) where you can run around without disturbing others and without your dog escaping.
Give your dog a treat and then run away from him. He'll probably chase you, which means he's now “tagged”. When he catches up to you, pet and praise him, then offer another treat. Run away again and repeat until your pup loses interest or gets tired out. The more you practice this game, the better your dog will get at it!
This is a classic game and one that the two of you can play both indoors or outside. You can also adapt this game to make it more challenging. The sky's the limit when it comes to having fun with this all-time favorite!
Nose Work Games
Nose work is a game that’s based on the training method used for detection dogs. In short, it’s the process of teaching dogs to search for specific scents and alert their handler when they find them.
This kind of training was originally developed to train search and rescue dogs. However, nose work games are now being taught at dog training facilities around the world as a fun way to engage dogs in mental stimulation.
Nose work games are a great way to train your dog by putting their natural hunting instincts to work without having to use food rewards or force. These games will help you learn how to communicate better with your pet while developing their sense of smell and confidence in their ability to find hidden objects in different environments!
Water Games For Dogs
One of the best ways to keep your dog cool is with a water sprinkler. You don't need much – just an inexpensive sprinkler from the hardware store that you can attach to a hose. Just make sure the pressure isn't too high or it could hurt your dog. If you want to get really fancy, you can buy one of those sprinklers that attaches to a garden hose but has a sprayer on the end that looks like one of those long-distance sprayers.
You can also use a pool, and use a variety of toys, but frisbees and floating balls work best in the water. This is a great way to exercise your dog while keeping them cool. Just be sure not to throw the toy too far, as many dogs become panicked when they can't touch the bottom in deep water. Stick to shallow water for playing fetch.
The obstacle course for dogs requires little to no equipment and can be played in your backyard or at the local park. You can also modify the course for your dog's strength level and interest level by adding more obstacles or making them more challenging.
To create an obstacle course, you'll need to start by marking out a course in your backyard or other open space using masking tape (or something similar). Make some gates using poles or broomsticks propped up against each other, and make a tunnel using some PVC pipes, an old sheet, or even an old box spring mattress with some holes cut into it for your dog to go through.
You can also get creative and use things like hula hoops and jump ropes for your dog to jump through and even balance beams made out of plywood. For toys, use a frisbee or tennis ball on a rope, which will help you teach your dog fetch while also entertaining them during the game.
If you have a dog, you know that summer can be a great time to play fun games with them. We’ve put together a list of six games that are sure to provide your pup with good exercise, mental stimulation, and much-needed bonding time as well. Plus, they might just save you from the common household problem of spring-time boredom.