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Speaking of Dogs: Entertainment for the Stay-at-Home Dog

Dogs are social, curious animals that do not handle boredom and isolation well. When left to their own devices, unemployed, under-exercised dogs will find something to do. Guaranteed.  Sadly, a dog’s interpretations of fabulous options for entertainment are usually annoying or dangerous: excavation of the yard, the art of escape, recreational barking, and recreational chewing are typical pursuits of the bored pet dog.

It doesn’t have to be that way; with a little planning and creativity, you and your best friend will remain friends for a very long time.

Tricks.  Take a few moments each day to teach your dog tricks. Rollover, play possum, balance a biscuit on the nose, and crawl are just a few tricks that can be taught fairly quickly. I love teaching tricks because there’s no pressure to succeed. After all, we’re just having fun…everyone can relax and enjoy the process. Dogs love learning tricks because humans are so charmed by even marginal success. Imagine if we were as excited each time our dogs performed “sit” or “come” as we are when they “shake hands” or “high five.”

Note: This best-of article was originally published July 2, 2012