The How, Why And What You Should Do For Doggy Boredom
Hello, readers! It’s Friday again, which means another article for you from me! This week, I want to talk to you about dogs who are bored. Yes, dogs get bored just like we do. What happens when we get bored? We think of things to do, right? Same with our dogs.
In this week’s article, I want to discuss why dogs get bored, the signs of boredom, and what to do to fix the issue.
Why’s this important for you as a dog lover? Well, if your dog is continuously getting in trouble, the main cause of this could simply be that she is bored out of her mind.
Why Dogs Get Bored
Dogs are extremely intelligent, social animals. They need continuous interaction. And, they need to feel like they have a purpose. You might be thinking ‘well, all my dog wants to do is sleep on the couch.’ And, that could be true. Some breeds need more stimulation than others.
Breeds including the Border Collie, German Shepherd, and Poodle are among the breeds most likely to get in trouble without mental or physical stimulation. They’re extremely intelligent — they absolutely need something to do. The phrase ‘a tired dog is a happy dog’ is absolutely true.
Not only does mental stimulation relieve boredom, but it also relieves any stress your dog is feeling and helps your dog’s personality shine through.
What type of physical and mental stimulation am I referring to? Well, there are all different types of stimuli. But, I recommend exposing your dog to new things and new places. And, provide them with as many learning experiences as possible.
Training, for example, is an excellent way to burn off some steam if you have run out of ideas for the day and your dog is still ‘ready to roll.’ Even if your dog knows sit, come, and stay, reinforcing those commands doesn’t hurt and it makes your dog feel like he’s doing a good job.
Signs of Boredom in Dogs
If you leave for a while, and come home to a destroyed home, you’re either dealing with an extreme case of boredom or separation anxiety. Usually … it’s just boredom. You might also notice a few of the following:
If you have noticed any of the above, try to give your dog something to do and watch to see if their behavior improves.
Ways to Prevent Boredom
There are so many ways to prevent boredom. First, let’s talk about doggy daycare. If you’re going to be gone for hours and hours, having someone come to your home, or dropping your dog off at a doggy daycare could be extremely helpful in reducing behaviors. Your dog will have something to do all day … and will likely come home with you ready to cuddle on the sofa and watch a movie. Look around for local doggy daycares or professional pet sitters, then ask for a meet-and-greet to see if your dog is comfortable being with them. If they’re a match, perfect.
If you’re home most of the day, or your dog comes with you on outings, don’t forget to give her plenty of exercise during the day. The general recommendation is a minimum of 30 minutes to 1 hour of exercise, but this varies based on breed and age. Take your dog for a long walk each day, even if it’s just at your home. If you don’t have time for a walk, there are dog walkers available who can help you, too.
Structure is also extremely helpful in managing your dog’s behavioral issues and preventing boredom. Establish a routine. Your dog will begin to understand when it’s time to go potty, when it’s time to play, and when it’s time to go to sleep for the evening. You’ll notice a much happier, healthier dog with a routine in place.
And, make mealtime fun. Mealtime doesn’t have to be you filling up the food dish and simply handing it over. Place their kibble throughout the house and have your dog sniff to find it. You can also take a look at slow feeder bowls to increase mental stimulation.
Oh, and the playdates! This might sound silly, but most dogs absolutely love play dates with their dog buddies. They’re able to run, jump, play tug-of-war, etc. and release a ton of energy. This also provides your dog with another opportunity to be social and interact with others. As you know dogs are pack animals, so encouraging play with other dogs can be helpful. Don’t panic if your dog isn’t a fan of other dogs, though. Some dogs are just that way. Just like us. Some people love being in crowds of people. Others would prefer to stay home and relax by themselves or with several select people.
The Bottom Line on Doggy Boredom
The bottom line here is make sure your dog has plenty of mental and physical stimulation. Let him play. Let him run. And, make sure you’re spending plenty of time with him to give him that social interaction piece of the puzzle. If your dog is experiencing behavior problems, give the information found here a try, and see how much it helps.