There is nothing more fun than playing with your dog. From retrieving in the park to activities together, there is plenty to do. It is important that you do it in a safe and responsible manner. We are happy to give playing tips for you and your dog.
Playing indoors with your dog
Whether you have a lot of space or little space, there are plenty of games you can do indoors with your dog. You can think of brain work, such as puzzles, but also playing with toys. When you play indoors, there are some things to keep in mind when it comes to your dog’s safety. For example, be careful when running on slippery floors. During wild games, your dog can slip and damage his joints, muscles and tendons. Make sure that your house is suitable for a dog and that there are no dangerous objects nearby, such as glass, vases, hard or sharp objects, open fire or boiling water. In the blog ‘A dog-friendly home’ we give you more tips for a pleasant and safe living environment for your dog.
Playing outside with your dog
When the weather is nice, you probably enjoy going out with your dog. Your dog can enjoy himself outside to his heart’s content, but here too there are a number of things that are important to be able to play safely. For example, always pay close attention to other traffic, such as cars, cyclists and pedestrians. Do not play near a road or cycle path, this can create dangerous situations. There may also be other hazardous items outside, such as shards of glass or other waste that can cause injuries. Also be careful with pointed fences and barbed wire. Do you have a nice garden where you like to play with your dog? Make sure it is also dog friendly. For example, provide a shady spot and remove plants that are poisonous to dogs. We are happy to tell you more about a dog-friendly garden in the blog ‘Making your garden dog-friendly’.
Playing safe with your dog
Safety comes first; that applies to your pet, but also to you. With all the tips we discuss in this article, you can make playing as safe as possible for your dog. But it is also important to pay attention to your own safety. Remember the following rules:
- Don’t always let your dog win the game. It is of course very nice for your dog when he wins, but winning too often can lead to your dog undermining you as owner;
- Which brings us straight to the second rule: You’re the boss! You decide when to play, when to stop playing and what the rules are;
- Keep a close eye on your dog’s behavior. Some dogs can become too fanatical and aggressive during playtime. Prevent this by closely observing your dog’s behavior and stopping in time.
Playing with children
It is also a great pleasure for children to play with the dog. But for the safety of your children – and that of the dog – it is important to take a number of things into account. By nature, small children are usually lower in the family hierarchy than the dog. Your dog will not take any orders from them and will not be guided by them during the game. Never leave young children alone with the dog to avoid dangerous situations. In addition, teach your child to handle the dog carefully and not to pull its ears or sit or lie on the animal. Also, never let your children walk the dog alone and teach them that the dog should be left alone when he is in his bed.
Safe toys for your dog
There are countless toys available for dogs. You will also find plenty of fun DIY tips for making toys for your animal yourself. However, it is important to be very careful with this. Toys that are not properly put together or are made of breakable material can be very dangerous for your animal. There are a number of things you can pay attention to, such as the material. Usually toys for dogs are made of rubber or soft plastic. But with their sharp teeth and strength, dogs often chew these types of toys quickly. Also make sure that no toxic substances, such as certain types of paint, have been used. In addition, be careful with loose parts, such as bells or fringes. If they come loose, they can end up in your dog’s stomach, which can be dangerous for him.
Often people throw branches; this seems harmless but can be dangerous. The branch or part of it can end up in the throat or windpipe and cause serious damage here. Opt for a sturdy ball or for toys that are specially made for retrieving.
Different kinds of game
There are different kinds of games that you can play with your dog. This way you can challenge your dog physically, but also mentally through play. We list a few for you:
- Brain work: Dogs can also use some mental challenge. A fun way to do this is with brain games. Examples of this are puzzles and search games.
- Retrieving: Throwing a ball or Frisbee and having your dog bring it back… Retrieving is a fun activity for both of you, best done outside.
- Pulling Games: Some dogs really enjoy playing a pulling game with you. Use a floss rope or other suitable toys for this. Please note, tug games are not suitable for children. It is also better not to play tug games with a puppy during the period that he changes his teeth.
- Sports with your dog: In addition to games, you can also take it more seriously by exercising with your dog. There are several sports that you can do with your dog. Think of agility, frisbee or sports such as doggy dancing and flyball.
Rewards or snacks while playing
While playing, you sometimes want to reward your dog, for example with a treat. Then opt for a small and healthy snack. Too many and too energy-rich snacks can lead to obesity. The organic mini snack for dogs is a small snack that is ideal for training and pampering your animal.