Phone: (440) 449-6644
5387 Mayfield Road
Lyndhurst, OH 44124
lac@lyndhurstanimalclinic.com
Email Us

Office Hours
Monday 8 AM - 7 PM
Tues & Thurs 8 AM - 6 PM
Wed & Fri 8 AM - 5 PM
Saturday 8 AM - 12 PM

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Animal Enrichment - Dogs

100_1008-175x123With our busy lifestyle many of our friends at home are severely under stimulated which can lead to harmful, annoying, and frustrating behaviors.

To reduce or even eliminate these problem behaviors we are adapting the practice of providing enrichment for our pets. An additional benefit of implementing enrichment in your daily routine is that it has been shown to slow down age related mental decline in pets.

100_0371-209x285What exactly is enrichment?
Enrichment is anything that promotes physical or mental activity. As people we use things like playing sports and games, reading, doing crossword puzzles, traveling, walking, dancing, and arts and crafts.

Bjump-143x243Dogs are incredibly easy to enrich:
Physical exercise:
Most working or sporting breeds need at least one hour of physical exercise.

Good physical exercise can be:
retrieving a ball or toy, playing tug-of-war (dogs need to be supervised with rope toys and not allowed to ingest any strings), hiking, agility training, running

Remember that puppies still need a lot of resting periods and cannot handle the same amount of exercise as adult dogs.

Positive Reinforcement Training

Lily_Schwarber-268x224Use kibble and treats creatively. Food in a bowl? That’s so yesterday…

  • Hide food in shred-able boxes or paper bags

  • Use special enrichment feeders that you can get at the pet store or online (Kong ®, Busy Buddy®,…)

  • Arrange a scavenger hunt around the house by leaving a couple of kibble or treats in different places

  • Make popsicles in plastic containers by freezing food and water in layers

  • Scatter food on the floor or on grass

  • Stimulate the senses of smell and hearing

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  • When on walks – pause to let your dog sniff! This will add huge benefit to the walk!

  • Play wildlife tapes (e.g. bird calls) or soft music

  • Use spices or aromas on objects and cloth

  • Use pheromone (Adaptil/DAP ®) diffusers to create a soothing atmosphere

  • Provide objects to explore - given when the dog is supervised and of course dogs should not be allowed to eat any part of them.

Switch it up
Instead of the same route walk your dog at a park or around a different block every now and then. If your dog enjoys car rides take him for a short ride.

Old toys get boring - take toys away after a day or two and give them back after a week. Provide toys for playing, toys for shredding, and toys made for chewing. They serve different needs of your dog.