The Snowy Outdoors is a Playground For Dogs
Residents in Lakewood, Colorado, are often met by snowy conditions during the winter. Beautiful landscapes are the result, but pets can’t roam these areas for too long on their own. It’s just too cold. Luckily, pet owners have some fun options for their dogs. There are both outdoor and indoor activities that are stimulating and safe for Fido. Explore these winter activities so that the entire family can enjoy the cool conditions with their loyal pal.
A great way to introduce the family pet to snow in the first place is by playing fetch. Don’t pull out a ball or Frisbee, however. Simply throw snowballs so that the dog runs after them. It will try to pick up the ball to no avail.
This activity is stimulating for the dog’s coordination. The pet eyes the snowball and follows it to its ultimate demise. It may even try to grab some snow. If the pet ever goes to a dog boarding facility, it can also enjoy the snow with the caretakers in this manner. The fun is a familiar activity to calm the pooch down.
The kids may have their sleds out to hit the slopes, but mom and dad can’t make a big trip today. Fido can use its dog training skills to wear a specialized harness. Attach this harness to a child’s sled. The family now has a small, mushing team.
This Golden, Colorado, activity is perfect for short excursions outdoors. The dog shouldn’t haul a load for too long in the snow. Take the breed’s size and temperament into consideration too. Larger dogs tend to enjoy pulling loads more so than small breeds.
Find the Smell
During dog daycare, a visiting pooch may have participated in nose work or scent games. These activities are usually indoor diversions, but they can be brought into the outdoors. Challenge the dog by offering it a scent to hunt for, such as cloves. Choose a relatively strong scent because snowy conditions with wind will make the game a bit difficult.
Once the dog finds the scent, reward it with a treat or praise. Try a variety of scents so that the dog has some variation. Their noses are extremely sensitive to the slightest scents.
Snowshoeing and Booties
The family dog has been recently released from a kennel. It’s time to stretch those legs out. Take part in snowshoeing for the family while adding the pooch into the fun. Add a snow coat onto the dog as well as booties. With this protective gear on the dog, it can move about with ease in the snowy conditions. The family continues snowshoeing alongside the dog.
Always bring water along with the family on these Lakewood outings. Although snow is water, it’s very cold. The dog benefits from real water so that its body temperature doesn’t dip too low in the outdoors.
Snowy Dog Parks
Taking a family pet directly from dog daycare to the local park may be a habit in the spring and summer. The park is covered in snow now. However, this scenario presents the family with a unique experience. Dogs who might be skittish with big groups of canines at the park don’t have to worry about that situation during the winter. The dog park may be entirely empty.
Bundle up Fido so that it can explore the park without any stress. In the spring, the dog may be more accustomed to the park and welcome other animals as a result.
One of the latest crazes is skijoring. This unusual word simply refers to humans on skis as they’re pulled by man’s best friend. Connect a line between the dog’s harness and a loop or handle for the owner to grasp. Once the momentum picks up, the dog and owner cruise around at a fun speed. If the pet is just exiting a kennel, this activity is perfect for stretching its legs.
After dog boarding, most owners want to spend some quality time with their pets. Taking a hike any time of year, including winter, provides that bonding time. Explore a meadow or hillside that’s completely covered in snow. Allow the pooch to frolic in the snow, especially if leash laws are relaxed in the region. Throw a ball to see if the pooch can find it in the snow. Any simple activities in the great outdoors allows the dog to bond with its master.
Stairs or Treadmills
At times, pet owners must admit that going outdoors is just too strenuous for everyone. There are indoor activities that can be just as fun as the outdoors. If the household has stairs, try a race to the top with the pet. Take some time going down the stairs so that no one trips, including the dog. Continue this up-and-down race until everyone is tired out.
Don’t forget that treadmills can be fun for dogs. Try the machine out at a slow speed at first. Some dogs love the motion while others avoid it.
Household Agility Course
Set up an indoor, agility course with blankets, hula hoops and other obstacles. Design the course to the dog’s size and abilities. This activity might take a few hours of time because the dog will want to try the course several times. Spread the course out across the house for the best effect.
If the winter blues continue, Golden residents might consider dog training as a clever diversion. Families benefit with a well-trained pet while the dog perceives the activity as outright fun. Be creative with those winter activities so that springtime seems to arrive with incredible speed. Fido will enjoy every season as a result.