What Interactive Games Can I Play With My Dog?
Interactive games are really great, and this applies to dogs just as it does for humans. Interactive games and toys are beneficial in a number of ways. When it comes to dogs, they help to exercise both their brains and bodies, they keep their brains sharp and can help prevent age-related mental illnesses, and they keep your dog out of trouble too.
Best Interactive Games for Dogs
There are lots of interactive dog toys out there with various benefits. However, interactive dog toys are really only for the dogs and don’t come with a whole lot of human involvement. This is where interactive games come into play. So, what interactive games can you play with your dog? These are some pretty cool ideas, and if you want to have a lot of fun with your dog, while also keeping their brain sharp, you will want to keep reading
Hide and Seek
One really easy and fun interactive game that you can play with your dog is hide and go seek. Now, to be fair, you as the human are the one who is going to be doing the hiding here. As smart as some dogs are, getting them to understand that they need to go hide and wait as you search for them is probably a bit beyond their mental capabilities. That being said, you can be the one who is hiding and have your dog search for you.
It’s not the most brain-intensive game out there, but it does require a certain amount of thought. Your dog has to know where all of the possible hiding spots in your home or yard are, they have to be able to check them all in a somewhat organized manner, and they have to be able to remember too. This does take 2 people to play, because one person has to get the dog to stay in one place while the other person hides.
Doing a treasure hunt with your dog is another fun interactive brain game to keep their wits sharp. It’s a lot like hide and seek, but instead of you hiding, you can hide toys and treats around the house or yard, and get your dog to search for them. A dog has to use their nose and eyes to search for the treats and toys, which stimulates their mind. Start off easy with simple and quick hiding spots because you don’t want the dog to get discouraged because it cannot find the treasure. Yes, even a dog will give up after a certain amount of time. So, start with easy hiding places, and when the dog finds the treasure, give it a bit of a reward to reinforce the fact that it has done a good job.
After you have done this a few times, you can then increase the difficulty. Hide a larger amount of toys or treats and make the hiding spots a little harder to find as well. You can even try setting up a number of boxes, like simple shoe boxes, and then hide the treasure in only one or a couple of them. This way, the dog can investigate each box.
Another cool interactive game to play with your dog is jump rope, yes, you read that right, jump rope. Although it may seem impossible to teach a dog how to jump rope, it can actually be done, and has been done many times before. What you first need to do is to teach your dog to jump on command. We aren’t going to explain how to do this here, as it would require a whole article just for that. However, in simplest terms, you have to pick a spot on the ground, then gradually teach your dog to listen to your command to jump.
Once the dog jumps on command, you can then introduce the jump rope into the equation and teach it to jump over the rope. This is actually one of the better interactive games to play with your dog, because it works their brains. You have to teach them to jump and then to jump every single time the rope comes down. Moreover, it also teaches your dog coordination as well. It’s a type of interactive game that helps improve both mental and physical abilities.
Stop and Go
Yet another great interactive game that you can play with your dog is stop and go, otherwise known as red light green light. This game involves your dog moving or walking around, and when you say red light, the dog has to stop, usually sit down, and then when you say green light, the dog can once again move around. It is a good game to play with dogs because for one, it helps ensure that your dog is trained to always pay attention to you, your commands. Also, it is a great training tool.
If you want to make the game more difficult and intense, you could potentially combine it with some of the other games we have discussed today. You could combine hide and seek or treasure hunt with this stop-and-go game. Hide some toys or treats, make sure your dog knows that they are supposed to search for them, and then every now and again, do the red light green light game as well, right in the middle of the treasure hunt. This will definitely keep your dog on their toes and their brain working overtime.
There you have four of the best interactive games that you can play with your dog. Some are harder than others and some take a good deal of practice. The bottom line is that these are games which will stimulate your dog’s brain, it will make them think, provide them with exercise, and allow them to play with their favorite human being.