As a dog owner, you always want to see your dog happy and energized. But there are some times where you’re not feeling it. Maybe you have an important remote job meeting coming up, or you could just want to watch a movie. But, instead, your dog wants to play, play, play. And you not giving them attention warrants barking, of course.
So how do you avoid an over-energized dog when you need some quiet and relaxation? The best thing to do is to put in the work to tire them out. For some dog parents, this could include playing a hardy game of tug of war or providing them with long-lasting dog bones to sap their energy.
Here are a few fast ways to tire out your dog when you truly need it.
1. Tug of War
Physical exercise is the primary way to get energy out of your dog. When you’re looking for ways to tire them out, you want an exercise that will exert a great deal of energy. Tug of war is just that.
Get a good, long chew toy and let your dog take hold of it. Once they do, grab onto the other side and start pulling against them. They’ll love the game, especially if they know the rules from previous attempts. They’ll be holding on for dear life, trying to pull it away from you, using the strength of their whole body and jaw. Best of all, it’s an awesome form of exercise while wearing them out.
2. Horsing around with the hose
Summer games can go a long way to tiring out your dog, especially as it relates to the summer heat. Rather than taking them out for a midsummer run in the afternoon heat, turn your backyard into a dog water park.
Whether it’s a series of dog pools they can jump in and out of or hoses and sprinklers they can run through and try to avoid, you can let your dog get all their energy out without having to do much work.
3. Going for a trail run
If you want a quick, simple way to tire out your dog, bring them out into the woods and go for a short trail run. Few things to note, for their own safety:
- Make sure they’re always on a leash
- Bring along some water
- Go out earlier in the day or late in the evening, rather than running in the midday heat
- Make sure you choose an unpopulated trail, for both your safety and theirs
- Choose a trail that is well-maintained to protect their paws and legs
4. A fun game of frisbee
Your dog will love a long game of playing with a frisbee. Frisbee is like catch on a whole other level. Rather than running after a ball thrown into the distance, your dog will be able to run after the frisbee, hoping to track it down and catch it before it hits the ground.
If you’ve never played catch with a frisbee beforehand, you should start out with a soft frisbee; otherwise, a hard frisbee might hit your dog or it could harm their teeth when biting onto it. Once they get a feel for the game, move onto a hard frisbee. It will make the game more fun, too. You can throw it farther and harder, allowing your dog to put out just as much energy to catch it.
5. Play fetch
Every dog goes crazy for a game of fetch. Throw a tennis ball, they run after it, they bring it back to you, and repeat. What’s not to love?!
You can easily do this if you have a backyard, but you might want to go to a larger space to make it really fun. Go to a local park or a soccer field (currently not in use) so you can truly toss the ball. It will give your dog farther to run, helping them to get out more of their energy.
Make sure you don’t work them too hard, though. Watch for signs of exhaustion. Also, you need to stretch beforehand. The last thing you want is to throw out your arm while trying to tire out your dog.
6. Give your dog something to chew on
An easy way to wear out your dog is by giving them long-lasting dog chews. It will take an hour or more of chewing to get through these, with enough nutrition and taste to satiate their hunger. Collagen chews are a great choice for your dog, as it’s a healthy chew treat that will help get their energy out.
7. Play hide and seek
Lastly, tire out your dog by playing hide and seek with them all throughout the house. Start out by using easy-to-find spots, as that will get your dog ready for the game, and they’ll be further excited to see where you go next. But start pulling out all the stops with the last few rounds. Make it tough for your dog to find you. They’ll be running around the house, looking for you in every nook and cranny until they can sniff you out.
You can tire your dog out in a pinch with no problem. Give them a long-lasting chew or take them out for a jog, play tug of war, or get them moving with an energized game of catch. Whatever it is, make sure they’re having fun and loving life alongside you.