Toys--we all love them! From tiny tots' blocks and teddy bears, to grown ups' cars and tools, toys make life more fun! But you don't have to be human to enjoy the benefits of a good plaything. Dogs love them too!
Providing your dog as a puppy with well-made toys puts him on a path of play for life. A sedentary lifestyle for our furry buddies, as for us humans, can lead to obesity and other secondary health concerns. Regular exercise is important, and playtime is a great way to get that exercise--not to mention the quality bonding time it provides for those who walk on two legs with those who walk on four!
Here are a few tips on how to get your canine pal interested in toys:
- Show interest in the toys yourself first by tossing it around and being excited when your dog shows an interest, too. Many dogs love silly, enthusiastic voices!
- Try interactive toys, especially ones that dispense food, to keep him eager to play.
- Rotate toys if your dog seems to become disinterested in those you've made readily available. Remember that pets can get bored, too!
- Try playing hide-and-seek with your dog by carrying along a noise-maker. Not only will the treat be finding you, but you can make a big deal out of him finding the squeaky thing as well!
- If you're playing indoors, encourage your dog to find a toy that you hide under a blanket or small rug.
- Remember that your enthusiasm will rub off, so really ham it up for your pup!
The advantages of having your furry friend attached to playing with dog toys range from exercise to improved behavior (such as less chewing on shoes and furniture). Well-designed toys last longer than cheap ones and are safer, so the investment is worthwhile, especially since your pooch will receive both physical and mental stimulation from his playthings.