Thursday, January 12, 2012

How to Keep a Dog Happily Tired and Not Eating Cardboard Boxes

Normally, Indiana likes spending a majority of the day buried under blankets, snoozing in a cocoon.  

Unfortunately, not all days are like this.  As a stay at home pet parent, it is my duty to entertain the animals when they get bored.  The consequences can be dire, but mostly annoying.  Chewed up cardboard.  Dog chasing cat.  Cat chasing dog.  Dog finding a cat toy and eating it.  Mostly dog finding something and attempting to eat it; a tactic Indiana knows is sure to get me out of my seat and giving him attention.

The Everlasting Fun Ball (for Breakfast Fun)
But, I have a few tricks of my own to keep Indiana calm and serene until Daddy comes home (which is when he lets out all of his reserved energy).  The best way to tire Indiana out is to never let him sleep in, which he loves to do.  If he had his way, he would stay wrapped up in blankets inside of his crate til ten, then waltz out seeking attention and harassing the cat all day.  So, I gently nudge him awake, until he stretches and huffs a little and is ready to go outside for a bit.

After his morning walk, I give him his breakfast in an Everlasting Fun Ball.  This is a great product to keep your dog entertained for a bit.  You pour kibbles in, put it on the ground and watch your dog push it around with his nose and eat kibbles that fall out.  However, it has some serious drawbacks, mostly getting the kibbles into the darn thing and how easily the kibbles fall out!  I've come up with a paper funnel that I carefully pour the kibbles into, after taping the bottom hole.  Then, I put some tape over the top hole so that only a few kibbles fall out as Indiana rolls it.  Otherwise, the holes allow way too much food to fall out with minimal effort from him, which doesn't mentally tucker him out at all.  I have to be careful about him not eating the tape though! It is a supervised activity, listening for crinkeling instead of crunching.  Also, it helps that Indiana is a Hoover Dog and will go over the whole apartment sniffing for missed crumbs.

This is usually enough to keep him napping til his lunch time walk.  But, on the days that he has some extra energy, I whip out the cat toy.  Yes, I've found that Indiana loves the feathers attached to a string that used to be reserved for the cat.   Of course the cat gets in too, and Indiana waits patiently for his turn to play.

You can hear his teeth click as he tries to catch it.  He's not as fast as the cat but jumps much higher.

Thankfully there is also a dog park a couple blocks from my apartment to make up for my lack of backyard.  However, with all the snow and lukewarm days, it has been a muddy mess recently and we are all suffering from cabin fever a bit.  That or muddy paws.  I'm not sure which is worse.

Are your dogs rambunctious during the day?  How do you keep them entertained?


  1. I bring toys all day long to mom while she is typing away on that computer.

    Eventually I wear her down.

    If that fails, I scratch at her leg and then finally, I resort to barking my demands!

    Let's Play! Enough Already!

    We go on walks. Or to the dog park. Or Mom throws my toys until I am panting.

    I like the sound of your cat toy! Never heard of working for kibble. Hmmmm

  2. Fred will just sit and whine while I'm on the computer until I stop and give him some attention. He too will eat anything!!

  3. We have one of those treat dispensing balls too. Kelly loves it, but the treats come out pretty readily! Kelly loves to nap, but she does get rambunctious right about midnight! Although she's almost 10, she loves to run and play, and a good walk usually tires her out for hours! Indiana sounds like a lot of fun!!

  4. Your art is so beautiful! Thank you for sharing it!

    Keep on wagging,

  5. Oh wow, Finn used to go crazy during the day! I have a few food-dispensing toys we give her, but I try to tire her out with long long long walks! I mean, long, long, long, long walks!

  6. My dog loves feathery cat toys too! its one of the best ways to wear her out


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