Games & Competitions for Active Dogs
Your dog loves to spend time with you, and what better way to keep him happy and healthy than by playing together? There are many ways to play with your dog, some officially organized and some not. A casual game in the backyard or at the park can be fun for both you and your pet. Two favorites are:
Hide & Seek
Dogs love to play with their owners, and most dogs will really enjoy a good game of hide-and-seek. To play, tell your pup to sit and stay (or have someone hold on to him), and then find a spot to hide. Don’t hide too well at first or your puppy may get frustrated and bored of the game. Once you’ve hidden yourself, call your dog’s name and see if he can find you. Another way to play hide-and-seek is to hide a treat for your pup to find. Hold the treat in your closed hand, letting the dog smell it but not see it. Go into a different room and hide the treat. Then, call your dog and let him find the treat.
The concept of fetch is simple: throw a toy for your dog to get and return to you. It's a fun game that's easy for you and your dog to play together just about anywhere. However, many dogs will chase a toy after it's thrown but not bring it back to you, turning fetch into a game of "Keep Away." To keep this from happening, throw the toy, wait for the dog to pick it up, and then run in the opposite direction. He should chase you. Once he catches up with you, ask him for the toy and praise him when he gives it to you. He should quickly learn the proper way to play the game. There are also a variety of organized sports that dogs and their handlers can train for together. These sports can provide mental and physical exercise for a pup, as well as a lot of fun!
Maybe you're looking for something you and your dog can do together that's a little more organized and perhaps a bit more competitive. There are a variety of organized activities that you and your dog can participate in together, including the following:
To find out about organized dog events in your area, visit the Event Search area of the American Kennel Club's website at http://www.akc.org/events/search/ .