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How To Keep Dog Entertained Outside While At Work


For many dog owners, leaving their furry friends alone outside while they’re at work can be a source of worry and guilt. Dogs are social animals that crave attention and stimulation, so it’s important to find ways to keep them entertained and happy while you’re away. In this article, we’ll explore some creative ideas for keeping your dog entertained outside while you’re at work.

One trend that has been gaining popularity among dog owners is the use of interactive toys and puzzles. These toys are designed to engage your dog’s mind and provide mental stimulation while they’re alone. They can range from simple treat-dispensing toys to complex puzzle games that require problem-solving skills. One professional in the field recommends, “Interactive toys are a great way to keep your dog entertained and mentally stimulated while you’re away. Just make sure to supervise your dog the first few times they play with a new toy to ensure they don’t get frustrated or overwhelmed.”

Another trend is the use of automatic fetch machines. These devices can keep your dog entertained for hours by continuously launching balls for them to chase and retrieve. One dog behavior specialist advises, “Automatic fetch machines can be a great way to keep your dog active and entertained while you’re at work. Just be sure to introduce the machine slowly and supervise your dog’s first few sessions to ensure they understand how to use it safely.”

A third trend is the use of outdoor agility courses. These courses are designed to challenge your dog physically and mentally, keeping them engaged and entertained while you’re away. One professional trainer explains, “Agility courses are a fun and interactive way to keep your dog entertained and provide them with a physical outlet for their energy. You can set up a course in your backyard with jumps, tunnels, and weave poles for your dog to navigate.”

Another popular trend is the use of doggy playdates or daycare. If you have a social dog that enjoys the company of other canines, arranging playdates with a neighbor’s dog or enrolling them in a doggy daycare can provide them with much-needed socialization and exercise while you’re at work. One veterinarian recommends, “Dogs are social animals that thrive on interaction with other dogs. Playdates or daycare can help prevent boredom and loneliness while you’re away.”

A fifth trend is the use of scent games. Dogs have an incredible sense of smell, and using this to their advantage can keep them entertained for hours. Hide treats or toys around your backyard for your dog to sniff out, or try playing games like “find the hidden object” to engage their sense of smell and mental acuity. One professional behaviorist suggests, “Scent games are a great way to keep your dog entertained and mentally stimulated. You can start by hiding treats in easy-to-find places and gradually increase the difficulty as your dog gets better at the game.”

Another trend is the use of outdoor water features. Dogs love playing in water, so setting up a kiddie pool or sprinkler in your backyard can provide them with hours of entertainment and help keep them cool on hot days. One professional trainer advises, “Water features are a great way to keep your dog entertained and provide them with a fun way to cool off during the summer months. Just make sure to supervise your dog while they’re playing in the water to ensure their safety.”

The final trend we’ll discuss is the use of treat-dispensing cameras. These devices allow you to monitor your dog remotely and dispense treats or toys to keep them entertained while you’re away. One professional trainer explains, “Treat-dispensing cameras are a great way to keep your dog entertained and provide them with mental stimulation while you’re at work. You can interact with your dog through the camera, dispense treats, and even play games to keep them engaged and happy.”

Now let’s address some common concerns that dog owners may have when leaving their pets outside while they’re at work, along with some solutions:

1. Concern: My dog will get bored and destructive.

Solution: Provide your dog with plenty of toys, puzzles, and activities to keep them entertained and mentally stimulated.

2. Concern: My dog will bark excessively and annoy the neighbors.

Solution: Use training techniques to address excessive barking, such as desensitization and counter-conditioning, and provide your dog with distractions to keep them occupied.

3. Concern: My dog will escape from the yard and get lost.

Solution: Ensure your yard is secure with a tall fence and lockable gates, and consider installing a GPS tracker on your dog’s collar for added security.

4. Concern: My dog will become anxious or stressed when left alone.

Solution: Gradually acclimate your dog to being alone by starting with short periods of time and gradually increasing the duration. Provide them with comfort items, such as a favorite blanket or toy, to help them feel secure.

5. Concern: My dog will become overweight from lack of exercise.

Solution: Provide your dog with plenty of opportunities for physical activity, such as walks, runs, and playtime in the yard, to help them maintain a healthy weight.

6. Concern: My dog will become lonely and depressed.

Solution: Arrange playdates with other dogs, enroll them in doggy daycare, or hire a pet sitter to provide them with companionship and socialization while you’re away.

7. Concern: My dog will be at risk of heatstroke or dehydration.

Solution: Provide your dog with plenty of fresh water, shade, and a cool place to rest, especially on hot days. Consider setting up a kiddie pool or sprinkler for them to play in to help them stay cool.

In summary, keeping your dog entertained outside while you’re at work doesn’t have to be a challenge. By incorporating interactive toys, puzzles, outdoor agility courses, playdates, scent games, water features, and treat-dispensing cameras into their daily routine, you can ensure that your furry friend stays happy and engaged while you’re away. Addressing common concerns such as boredom, excessive barking, escape attempts, anxiety, weight management, loneliness, and heat-related risks will help you provide a safe and stimulating environment for your dog. With a little creativity and planning, you can ensure that your dog’s time alone outside is enjoyable and fulfilling.