Animals, not just dogs, need to stay active throughout the year. After all, it’s good for them. However, that becomes a challenge in the winter. With cold temperatures and limited sunlight, it’s hard to exercise pets outdoors. Here are some excellent solutions to keep your pet active inside your home.
Why Pets Need Year-Round Exercise
When it comes to exercising your pet, you’ll discover multiple benefits. So, just because you can’t take them outside in the winter doesn’t mean they don’t need to stay active. Following are some of the more common reasons why furry friends need indoor activity during the winter months:
- Weight gain
- Compromised health
- Behavioral issues (making messes in the house, increased aggression, chewing, and more)
To prevent your pet from developing any of these, here are some excellent things you can do with them inside.
Play Hide and Seek
Most dogs love this game. However, some cats and even birds find it fun too. The great thing about this activity is that you don’t need anything special. All you have to do is hide, followed by calling your pet to find you. Not only is this a game you can play with your pet but also your kids can participate in.
Place different items inside a few boxes. Then, teach your pet to identify a specific scent. Animals find scent work fun. After all, when they get a scent right, you’ll reward them with a small treat. However, it’s also a great way to correct bad behaviors. After all, it refocuses their attention on something positive.
Along with dogs, many cats love to play fetch. Buy actual toys for this purpose, or simply tie a knot in a T-shirt to use as a throw toy. Either way, they’ll love running for the object, followed by returning it to you. Fetch is especially beneficial to break a chewing habit.
Locate a Pet-Friendly Indoor Pool
Today, some facilities with indoor pools are pet-friendly. In particular, it’s become relatively common to find a doggie daycare that offers inside swimming. This is also a great way to keep your animal active while getting some exercise yourself.
Fill a Kong
Of all the pet toys on the market, the Kong remains one of the most popular. You can fill one with Greek yogurt, peanut butter, or some other food that won’t harm your pet. Then, watch them have fun. This is a great way to keep them busy for hours, especially if you work outside of the home. It’s a combination of physical activity and mental stimulation.
If you have a basement or other open area in your house, you could set up a miniature agility run. One benefit is the exercise it provides. However, because this is something you’d do with your pet, it also helps build a stronger and more trusting bond.
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Teach Obedience Skills
You can even make this fun for your pet. It all comes down to the approach. Whether you have a puppy or an adult dog, you can start with the basics. After the animal masters them, you can then move on to more advanced obedience skills. Before long, your furry friend will eagerly obey your commands.
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