“Boredom is simply the absence of an interesting perspective” –Brandon A. Trean
Boredom is a very under-discussed condition in pets. Exercise, mental or physical, can relieve boredom and stress for everyone. An evening outside on the walking trails or at a park will give your dog a chance to run and give you a chance to enjoy the fresh air. Making dog-walking dates with friends gives your dog chances to be social, social stimulation and pack play is great for dogs of all ages and sizes. Most dogs benefit from group activity, even if they’re not the type to wrestle and play, having a friend to sniff bushes with is more fun than doing it alone. Even dogs that are used to solitary life will enjoy having dog friends on walks.
Dogs that are concerned about other dogs often pick up on that nervous energy from their owners, dogs are naturally socialized as puppies and don’t forget those instincts. When introducing new dogs to each other, pick a neutral area to be introduced, preferably off-leash so the dogs don’t feel the need to protect their owners. If the dogs are focused on dominance, distract them (and owners) with a toy or activity and before long, you’ll notice that all tensions will resolve. There are really excellent options for dog parks, dog daycares and social groups that meet regularly to exercise dogs and new friends are always welcome.
Dog toys that stimulate the brain are wonderful and there are so many options available. Balls that dispense kibble individually bowls with mazes to slow down food consumption and make the dog think a bit, Kong toys stuffed with healthy snacks to keep mouths busy, and even stuffed toys that squeak or disassemble are incredibly rewarding and satisfying for pets. Teaching new commands is also beneficial, adding hand signals to already learned voice commands or learning new fun tricks like playing dead or hide-and-seek will help to keep your dog happier and help you continue to bond with your pet while having fun.
Being more active with your pet can be very simple and yet very life-changing. Developing muscle mass, dissolving internal body fat, releasing endorphins and making happy emotions, and mental stimulation to reduce boredom are all benefits of exercise.
If you have any questions, please give us a call at 403.527.2829.
Written by: Crossroads Animal Hospital