Keeping Your Pets Entertained At Home
Sometimes our furry little ones need a bit more entertainment when at home. We can’t always take them to the park or on walks, and some pets, like cats, can’t be taken out period. One of the struggles a pet-parent will face with energetic fur-babies may be keeping them busy or entertained while at home.
A bored or unstimulated pet will face mental health declines, begin to act out and may even become distressed or destructive. Naturally this is the opposite of what any parent would want for their pet, which is why we will be looking at ways to keep your pet happy and entertained from the comfort of your own home.
Ways To Keep Your Pet Entertained From Home:
Interactive toys are ideal for not only giving your pet something to keep busy and entertained, but also as a method of providing enrichment and mental stimulation. For example, feeding your dog using the All For Paws Interactive Dog Food Maze, will not only encourage your dog to slow down while eating, which prevents obesity and bloat, but also keep them busy during meal times and provide them with puzzle and problem solving skills. The Pet Geek Electric Play Bone is a toy that rolls around on the floor encouraging your dog to run around after the toy in order to get their treats. Another toy that encourages puzzle solving is the All For Paws Interactive Frenzy Roll that requires dogs to roll around and figure out how to get the treats out.
For cats, have them work for their food using the All For Paws Interactive Cat Food Maze or the CatIt Play Treat Spinner to prevent them from eating too fast and to encourage puzzle-solving skill development. For interactive play, the Pet Geek Interactive Hiding Mouse toy or the Pet Geek Furious Mouse Interactive Toy will encourage your cats to use and develop their hunting instinct.
Chew toys are great for promoting dental health as well as keeping your pets busy during their days alone at home. They also discourage pets from chewing on our personal items that we’d prefer to keep safe.
If your dog is a strong chewer and you need a toy that is quite tough and isn’t destroyed easily, we’d recommend the WestPaw Hurley Bones which are available for dogs of all sizes. Another tough toy you could consider is the Kong Classic toys, in fact, if you fill them with peanut butter spread and pop them in the freezer, they’ll be even more exciting and tasty for your dogs to chew. Some dogs prefer squeaky chew toys, and for those, the Gigwi Multi Sounds Bone would be a favorite. Each end of this bone makes a different squeaky noise, and the material is durable enough to withstand extensive chewing.
Cats also have their own options for chew toys! The Gigwi dental mesh toys are not only ideal cat chew toys, but the texture of these toys will help to clean your kitty’s teeth as they chew! Another option to consider for your cat is the Gigwi Johnny Catnip Toy, which is made of compressed catnip and feathers on each side, encouraging your cat to munch on and happily play with it to their heart’s content!
Chase Toys For Cats:
Cats love to chase, and having a wand or teaser toy will certainly come in handy! You can have your kitties running and jumping around while wiggling the end of their teaser toy around on the floor or in the air. It’s a great way for them to get exercise and also release energy, especially before bed times!
Tug of war:
Tug of war is an excellent way to play with and entertain your dogs! It also helps to tire them out before bed time, and has also been known to help increase your pup’s confidence. Thankfully we have a variety of tug toys available for both you and your dog to enjoy, for example the Kong Jaxx Braided Tug Toy which has a handle for you to comfortably grab while your dog pulls on the other end, or our colorful Beco Rope Ball Toys which are made from natural materials. You can browse our catalog of tug toys further here.
Fetch is a classic game between dogs and their humans, and it’s more ideal for those who have a garden or an open space where nothing can be broken or knocked over!
For dogs and their parents, we have a wide variety of fetch and throw toys available! We have the classic Tennis Balls, available in all sizes for all dog breeds, and we have balls that are a bit harder for those strong biters! Balls aren’t the only toys you can play fetch games with, another option is frisbees which encourage your dog to jump a bit more than just a regular ball, as these are a lot more aerodynamic.
Cats can also be trained to play fetch, especially kittens! Throwing a small toy like the Gigwi Melody Chaser or the All For Paws Lambswool Triplets Mice toys will definitely encourage them to chase after the toys, you’ll just need to train them to bring them back!
Hiding Treats Around The House:
Hiding treats around the house for your cat or dog to find is a great way to keep them busy, especially if you’re planning to be out of the house for a while. The trick is to let them smell the treats before hiding them, and not to hide them anywhere that will encourage them to destroy or chew anything. Make sure not to hide them too well, or to hide too many. Keep them in places that are obvious to find and are easy to reach.
Having The TV or Radio On While You’re Away:
Having the TV on in the background may be comforting to some pets. Especially when their parents leave the house. Try keeping your TV on a channel or a show on loop that you watch frequently. Having something familiar in the background may help your pets feel calmer. This isn’t limited to pet parents that are just out of the house, if you work from home, you can have the TV on in another room or another floor for your pets.
Radio Or Speakers:
Classical music can be soothing for animals, and this can be the case for animals at home. Having a radio tuned to a classical music station or a calming playlist set up on your speakers or TV will work wonders for your pets anxiety and help them relax.
Companions For Your Pet:
Your pet may be craving some animal companionship or just a friend to play with. Here are a few options you can explore:
If you have a neighbor or friend who has a dog that is friendly with others, invite them over to play with your dog! You can start with simple walks together to get them used to each other’s company, and eventually lead it into playdates! Your dog will definitely feel more entertained by having a friend around.
Fostering is a great way to test having another pet around with your own pet. For those pet parents that are uncertain about committing to adoption, it provides an excellent opportunity for a trial period. It also serves as a temporary home for a pet looking for their forever home, until they find a happy family willing to take them in themselves.
Adopting a new pet will provide a homeless animal with a new forever family. It will also bring a lifelong companion into the life of your current pet. Dogs are often happier when they are part of a “pack” and your fur-babies will certainly keep one another entertained by playing together all day and keeping one another company!
Obedience training not only gives your pet skills and teaches them to behave, but also provides them with mental stimulation and creates a bonding experience between the two of you. Start with simple commands for your dog such as “sit”, “stay” and “come here” and slowly begin to develop their obedience skills. Obedience also teaches your pet to behave, not be destructive and not mess everywhere. You can reward them with some yummy treats every time they learn! Cats and dogs can both benefit from obedience training and overall so will you as a pet parent.
Pets are really smart and can pick up tricks really quickly if given the right motivation and praise! You can teach your cat to fetch, or teach your dog to roll over. By challenging them to learn these tricks you are also educating and mentally stimulating them. Your pet will certainly be entertained while learning new tricks, and you’ll both have a lot of fun in the process! Reward your pet with some cat treats or dog treats every time they get closer to learning their trick!
With these helpful tools, your pet is sure to never have a day of boredom at home!