As someone who still has a growing puppy, may I ask what kind of things you do for mental stimulation/enrichment to help tire out the kid? My puppy (4 months) never seems to tire out much lately. Physical exercise is hard because she is terrified of walking down the street still so we usually don't go far in order to prevent overstimulation, and I do many short training/clicker sessions throughout the day and offer toys but she has a hard time learning to settle.
hi anon! i wouldn’t be worrying overly about physical exercise just yet, although here’s a nifty guideline i printed out and kept around while the boyo was growing being he gonna be medium/large i didn’t want to inadvertently strain
although practicing ur leash walking skills in ur house/yard is a good
thing to practice as you work ur way further down the street!
predictable reply from me: noseworks :P things I do include:
- training him to find a specific scent
- hiding kibble in objects boxes and having him find those (start easy!)
- going on from scent, kibble trails in grass if you can. your yard, the grass strip on the path near your house (bonus, sniffing is sometimes a self soothing behaviour so redirecting him to sniffing on your walks may help him calm down a bit). Thyme likes this game so much he will take kibble hidden in grass over a raw rabbit on his bed.
- body awareness exercises! teaching him this will exercise the brain by learning AND help him be more aware of his body. I like to use clicker training for this and really make him puzzle out which body part i was clicking for (raised platforms/different textured items they can feel with their feet help make it easier for the puppers)
- have u seen kikopup’s capturing calm video? is important to teach him how to settle, even if he is feeling active, so try and reward when is calm.
- teach and play tug!
- or teach fetch :D
- recall practice - toss a treat for ur dog to chase, then do recall word and reward for running to you! slowly build distance so u can toss the treat quite a distance then as the dog eats the treat - recall! its kinda funny cause they eat the treat faster so they can run back to you. building recall and making ur dog run about!
other items include flirtpoles, frisbees, have things for them to climb over with different textures and balance/wobble slightly. his goddamn yoga ball.
games are good because you’re both exercising your dog, training your dog (turn into impulse control exercises later!) and teaching your dog to engage with you/see you as fun and not just the fun police!
also it’s plain fun.
oh and of course playing with thistle/following her around/puppy play dates
i am also right now considering buying a pool to:
a) cool them down in summer
b) walk them around it and let the gentle resistance help them build up muscle.
c) might even be deep enough for thyme to swim in we will see.
OH and here’s a thing I had to keep reminding myself. Sometimes he was naughty…because he was tired! But i’d mistake it for energy when actually just cranky and tired and needing a nap. and he’d sook a bit when he’d need to go to bed but after sleeping would be much better mannered.
Hoping ur puppy and u are working out. im mentally trying to guess what kind of dog u could have and want to say shepherd for no real reason. am i close? far? hoping something here helps regardless of what u got!