With summer upon us, it's the perfect time to engage in outdoor activities with our furry friends. Most dogs love spending time with their humans, and what better way to bond than by playing fun games together? Interactive games provide exercise for your dog and stimulate their minds. So, grab your pup's favorite toy and get ready to have a blast with these 10 games for you and your dog to enjoy this summer.
1. Fetch & Retrieve - An all-time favorite, fetch is a classic game that never fails to entertain. Grab a ball or a frisbee and toss it for your dog to retrieve. Of course, some dogs may not participate fully, but it’s always fun to try. If they do, it becomes an excellent exercise for them and a great way to enhance their natural instincts.
2. Treasure Hunt - Hide treats or toys around your backyard for your dog to find. They’ll be able to tap into their impressive scent-tracking abilities as you encourage your dog to find the treasures keeping them engaged and active.
3. Sprinkler Run - On a sunny summer day, simply turn on a sprinkler and let your dog enjoy a refreshing romp through the water. It's an entertaining way to keep them cool and provide some much-needed exercise while you’re taking care of a task that you would anyhow.
4. Bubble Chasing - Dogs are fascinated by bubbles! We know this first-hand at Good Dog as our bubble blower is especially active in the summer. You can continue it at home when you blow some dog-friendly bubbles and watch your dog gleefully chase and pop them. This is an activity that is sure to bring out the inner puppy in your dog. Warning though - our staff has made it clear that the dog-friendly bubbles do not taste like cheese or bacon as they’re labeled. We haven’t asked them why they know this though…
5. Obstacle Course - Set up a simple obstacle course in your backyard using hula hoops, cones, and tunnels. Guide your dog through the course, rewarding them with treats and praise. It's a great way to challenge their agility and obedience skills and create your own version of a dog show - invite your friends over to celebrate your dog’s ever-improving agility.
6. Hide & Seek - Play a game of hide and seek with your dog. Have someone hold your dog while you find a hiding spot. Then call your dog's name and wait for them to come find you. It's a delightful game that enhances their recall skills. Just remember to provide a treat when they find you!
7. Tug of War - Engage in a friendly game of tug of war with your dog using a rope toy. Make sure to establish clear rules and boundaries to avoid any accidental nipping. This game helps strengthen your bond while providing physical exercise. And, quite frankly, it’s just fun.
8. Scent Work - Tap into your dog's amazing sense of smell by playing scent work games. Hide treats or toys in boxes or under cups and let your dog use their nose to find them. It's mentally stimulating and keeps them entertained. It’s also fascinating to watch them use their sense of smell right in front of your eyes.
9. Agility Training - If you’ve completed the obstacle course noted in number five, now take it to the next level and set up an agility course in your yard. You could also enroll in a local dog agility class. These courses involve various obstacles like jumps, tunnels, and weave poles - you may not have all of the equipment, but get creative with what you already have at home. This is a fantastic way to challenge your dog's physical abilities and build their confidence.
10. Water Games - Make your way to a dog-friendly beach or a pool, and take your dog for a swim. Many dogs love splashing around in the water, and it's a great low-impact exercise that helps keep them cool in the summer heat. We would even suggest a kiddie pool for home use, when we break ours out at Good Dog, the dogs love it!
This summer, make the most of your time with your furry companion by engaging in some fun games that provide physical and mental stimulation. Of course, you’ll want to remember to prioritize your dog's safety and well-being during playtime. So grab your pup's favorite toy, head outside, and create unforgettable summer memories together!