During the past several weeks of the stay at home order, you may have noticed yourself getting into old hobbies and pastimes that you let go by the wayside.
Needing to keep ourselves busy, many Americans turned to gardening, bird watching, board games, puzzles, and so on. Likewise, our pets need lots of interesting things to do, since they are at home far more than we are. A bored pet is typically one who struggles with behavior problems and does not get the exercise they need to thrive.
We are here with some great solutions for keeping your pet busy, happy, and active. Here are some favorite indoor activities to entertain your pet from your friends at Godspeed Animal Care
10 Great Indoor Activities
Quarantine isn’t the only prohibitor of being outdoors, since summer is coming up and on hot days, it’s hard to take your pet outside. Responsible pet owners know that most dogs and cats need 30 minutes of exercise each day, with some high energy breed requiring more. Being indoors doesn’t have to curb your pet’s daily needs, though. Here are a few of our favorites.
- Run up and down stairs together – If you have a split level home or stairs outside, jog up and down them with your pet. Even walking up then back down with your pet leashed is a great cardiovascular exercise to get everyone’s hearts pumping.
- Play tug-of-war – This age old classic game with your dog really gets your dog going because it requires the use of their entire body. Each of their muscles will be worked as well as the mental challenge to win, which most doggos adore.
- Hide things around the house – Get your pet to go on their very own scavenger hunt by hiding bits of their meal, some small treats, or other items around the home. Start with easy sites for them to get to, then increase the challenge as they understand the game. Start swapping out favorite toys and other things in lieu of treats to avoid giving your pet too many calories.
- Dance together – Gather your favorite workout or dance playlists and cds, and dance with your pet. It sounds weird, I know, but no one is watching. Many pets get into the music by hopping and jumping around alongside you. There’s even dog dancing videos out there, which may be of interest to the Fred Astaire Fido among us.
- Practice doga or animal yoga – Even if your pet is a cat, bird, or other critter, there is such a thing as yoga with pets. From goats to horses, to your family dog, yoga is a time honored way of stretching and relaxing, and there are several poses that are suitable for dogs and other four-legged friends. Talk about downward dog!
- Play a game of fetch – Using a Nerf ball or other soft toy, you can play fetch indoors if you make some room to do it. Pull back furniture in a living area or use a long hallway so your pet has room to run and fetch. Many cats will get into fetch using one of their catnip mice, too. Try it!
- Teach your pet tricks – If your pet is a master of basic commands, you may want to teach them more complex commands. Tricks like roll over, beg, walk on back legs, balance a treat on their nose, etc., can both provide exercise and mental enrichment.
- Set up an agility course – Agility courses for both cats and dogs can be purchased online. What it is is a series of obstacles that your pet must run through, jump over, navigate, and so on to get through the course. It’s a great way to reinforce training and give your pet a lot of energetic exercise to wear them out and make them especially delighted with the task.
- Use a laser pointer – The family cat adores chasing that red spot, and most dogs also like it. It’s a good activity for small indoor spaces and at a minimal cost, so you get more activity for your pet for the price.
- Set up some water fun – When it’s not too hot out, you can use a kiddie pool for your dog to play in. Small pets can splash around in a bathtub, too, or you can set up a sprinkler in the yard. No matter what the source of the splash, many canines adore being in water. Just remember to watch your pet any time they are in a body of water, even if it is a shallow pool.
Need Other Ideas to Exercise Your Pet? Call Us!
There is no reason why you and your pet can’t enjoy some exercise when you can’t get outside. There are so many games and exercise options, it’s only a matter of time and creativity. Do you have a favorite indoor activity to entertain your pet? We’d love to get more ideas. Just comment on our Facebook or mention it at your pet’s next checkup.
Keep moving, have fun, and enjoy! And, please do not hesitate to call us for an appointment or additional questions.