With COVID-19 wreaking havoc globally and nationally, the everyday lives of Americans are being adjusted at a rapid, ever-changing pace. According to The New York Times, as of March 24, roughly 17 states, 14 counties and eight cities have been instructed to stay at home.
While this can cause widespread distress and anxiety, your pet may be feeling a similar type of anxiety as his daily exercise routine or means to outdoor stimulation have decreased. While some pets become depressed or lethargic from a change in routine or lack of exercise, others may become anxious or destructive.
If you are faced with the task of staying home, how can you keep your dog active during a COVID-19 quarantine? There are indoor options you can choose to help engage your pup and keep his (and your) spirits up.
Be Prepared and Stay Well-Stocked
While most of America has run to grocery stores and Amazon to stock up on food, toilet paper and hand sanitizer, don’t forget about your dog’s needs. Make sure to have dog food and treats for several weeks of feeding in case you are quarantined at home. Having an extra supply of necessary medications doesn’t hurt either.
Now is a great time to support local businesses. Stop by your neighborhood pet store to grab some food, treats and maybe extra toys for good measure. If you are unable to leave home or your local stores are closed, online shopping sites such as Chewy.com still carry a wide variety of dog foods that can be delivered to your house.
Get Creative with Indoor Games
Set up a makeshift scavenger hunt by hiding treats around your home or yard that your dog must search for and sniff to find.
If you have an empty cupcake tray, place kibble or treats in several of the cupcake indents. Put tennis balls in each hole covering the treats, so your dog must remove the tennis balls one by one to find where his snacks are hidden.
Find a PVC pipe and drill small holes into it. Stuff treats inside the pipe and cover both ends. Now, Fido must figure out how to get the treats out through the small holes you drilled by rolling the pipe and using his imagination to find his prize.
For a little less work, place treats inside an empty box or two and close them. Place multiple boxes around the floor, so your dog has to figure out which box his treats are in and how to successfully access them.
Work on Training
People often say bored dogs are destructive dogs. To keep pup’s mind engaged while he endures a stretch of infrequent physical activity, work on indoor training. Improve skills your pup has already mastered, and if you’re feeling brave, try new tricks.
Does your pooch know how to play dead? Weave in and out of your legs? Roll over? Working together can help you bond and can tire pooch out from all that focus and concentration.
Find Puzzle Toys
If you’re not feeling creative or don’t have the energy to make homemade activities, try purchasing some. Local pet stores or places like Chewy.com often carry pre-made puzzle toys that will distract Fido for hours.
Put your dog’s meals inside a toy that he must roll around in order to obtain his dinner. Buy a Kong and stuff it with peanut butter or kibble. Consider purchasing a “hide-and-seek” stuffed animal toy or an activity board your pooch can work on.
Keeping your dog active during a COVID-19 quarantine may take some special thinking and innovation, but it is doable and well-worth the effort to help keep you and your pooch healthy and happy.
Thanks for stopping by! We’re glad you’re here and hope you found some of these tips helpful about how to keep your dog active during a COVID-19 quarantine. If you enjoyed our article, please feel free to share it with friends, family and on social media sites. Most importantly – from our family to yours – stay safe and healthy!