11 Fun Ways to Keep your Pet Active Indoors
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- 13 Jan, 2021
Does your pet miss the park due to bad weather? Take this opportunity to spend quality bonding time and try some new games with your pet. There are plenty of activities that you can do for fun, active and worthwhile grey and rainy days. Here are 11 fun ways to keep your pet having fun indoors:
1. Rotate the toys
Pets can get bored with their old toys. They want something new to their noses and eyesight. You can try hiding their old toys for a while and reintroduce them after some time. If you keep their toys in separate boxes in different rooms, then you can rearrange and switch these boxes for a change. This way, your pet will look for their favorite toy and will be surprised to see the toys that they haven’t seen for a while.
2. Play Hide and Seek
This game is an easy way to keep them moving around the house. Wait until they are distracted by something, then hide somewhere – behind the door/curtain/closet etc. Call your dog by their name and wait until they find your hiding spot. Hand them some treats for a reward. You can do this with several people at your houses for more fun. Take a treat and see which one of you will get caught first. Hide and seek not only allows indoor exercise but reinforces recall training for your pets.
3. Add Obstacle Courses
Obstacle courses make any game more exciting and mentally stimulating. If you have spacious rooms, then the more obstacles you can add in the game. Place a tape on the doorway so your pet can either jump over or scootch under it. Let them jump over chairs, crawl under the tables or run around the pillars. Add some limbo bars to go under – mopping stick, brooms, rulers, etc. If you want to be a little more creative, you can rearrange your furniture for your pet to wind around. You may think that this applies only to dogs but cats actually love playing with difficulty as well. On the corridors, try lining up several bottles and get them to walk in a maze-like path. Pile up some tissue rolls to jump over. Add 1 more level as the difficulty increases and see how high your pet can jump. For other obstacles, you can try tunnels, hula hoop and blanket cushions.
4. Interactive Toys
Interactive toys are increasingly becoming popular among pet owners. Unlike static toys, interactive toys automatically moves around and about on its own. When turned on, it will light up and bounce up and down and roll around the floor without getting stuck, like the Wickedball. What makes this toy special is, it’s unpredictable. It will keep moving for a few minutes and it will pause, waiting for your pet to touch like a ‘go signal’. If your pet likes to chew while playing, Wickedbone offers a chew-safe interactive toy so your dog can have fun and exercise even without a companion. What about interactive toys with treat dispensers? Yes, it’s real! Skymee Owl Robot is one of the top dispenser toys in the market. It has a camera and audio features so you can play with your pet using your smartphone. Navigate the robot around the house and let your pet chase it! Now that’s what you call fun!
This is one of the most basic games you can play with your pet. You can take advantage of your long corridors as a running path. To add difficulty, add some obstacle on your pet’s path. Keep in mind that you have to make the area safe to run about. Remove fragile decors and clear spillages to avoid accidents. While it may sound like fetch is only for dogs, many cats actually love this game! Cats love anything that makes crunchy sound. Use something like crumpled paper, plastic seals, or DIY toys. Just make sure that it’s not small enough to be swallowed to avoid choking. For dogs, you can use basic toys like frisbee, ball or plushies. Your pet may pant after some rigorous activity, let them rest for a few minutes before resuming your playtime. If you want to feel extra, there are automatic fetch toys now so your dog can play on their own.
6. Tug of War
Tug of war is a very competitive game that uses only simple thing–rope or a piece of cloth! It’s not space consuming but the drawback is it can bring the predator out of your pet. Trust should already be established before doing this game because your pet can get overly competitive and aggressive. If you notice that your pet is becoming more invested, lighten up the mood with a treat or some distraction.
7. Nose Work Games
Your pet has better senses than you so nose work games will definitely keep them moving. Hide treats all over the room and let them find them. If you have a dog, you can train them the “find it” command. Start by placing a piece of treat on places he can find. Then, increase difficulty by hiding treats on hidden areas. Make sure to reward them with cuddles, head rubs or more treats after the game.
8. Treadmill or Wheels
Yes, you can train your pet to use a treadmill! There are even treadmills that are designed for pets. Its advantage is they are small and compact so they it takes up less space than a regular one. Before anything else, make sure that they are comfortable by the sight and noise of a running treadmill. Turn it off and let them sit on it. Give them a treat so they can associate treadmill with a positive impression. Turn it on and let them walk with a slow pace. Don’t use a leash when using a treadmill to avoid accidents. Once they are used to it, you can now increase the speed gradually. Hand out a treat once in a while to keep them motivated. Keep an eye on your pet when using a treadmill, you’ll never know when accidents can happen. Meanwhile, there cat wheels that you can invest on to keep your cats running! Pair it with a laser so they feel the thrill of ‘chasing the red dot.’
9. Teaser Wands
One of the easiest toys for cats is a teaser wand. It can have a feather or a mouse at the end part. It’s not just fun but it keeps your hand at a distance from getting pounced and scratched. It gives them the thrill of chasing a prey. Add difficulty by waving the teaser wand around their cat towers or over the tunnels.
10. Chase Bubbles
Did you know that you can play bubbles with your pet? Whip out the wand and let your pet chase them and pop them out. Make sure that you get a mixture that won’t hurt their eyes. For more fun, get bubble mixtures with scented flavors. For cats, you can get bubbles infused with catnip. If you’re unsure which one to get, you can make a mixture on your own using glycerin and water.
11. Scratching Posts
Everyone knows that cat love climbing up to the highest ground. Invest in a scratching post that is tall enough and wide enough for them to fully stretch their body. Make sure that it’s sturdy and can carry the weight of your cat. Scratching posts maintain claws, reinforce good behavior and reducing the chance of your cat clawing your furniture. Make it more entertaining by placing treats on different parts of the tower.
Keeping your pet indoors is not boring if you know the available toys that you can get for them. Make sure to invest in toys that are safe and good fit for your pet. Always supervise to avoid accidents. Know your pet's limit and weaknesses before introducing a new game. Now go find your pet and have fun indoors!