Do Dogs And Cats Need Entertainment?
Dogs and cats have been domesticated for centuries and are now one of the most popular pets worldwide. But while they have been bred to be companions, they still retain many of the instincts of their wild ancestors.
This means that they require mental stimulation, physical exercise as well as entertainment to stay healthy and happy. You really don’t want your bored cat or dog attacking your furniture and belongings!
Have you ever wondered what your pets get up to when you aren’t around? It isn’t all “The Secret Life Of Pets”! You DO, however, need to provide your furball with entertainment to keep them somewhat occupied.
Boredom can lead to destructive behavior in your pet, which is why these activities provide much-needed mental stimulation.
Ways to Keep Your Pet Entertained
Keeping your pets healthy, entertained, and happy is no easy feat. These tips will help you make your pet feel great.
A dog's natural predatory instincts are stimulated when he hunts for food. Encourage your dog to hunt for treats or toys by hiding them in different spots.
For the first few times, you can let them watch you as you go about hiding their treats. The idea is to take baby steps so they understand the game before escalating the difficulty level. Once they get the hang of it, keep them out of the room while you hide the "treasure."
Consider hiding small quantities of your cat's dry cat food in various locations throughout your home. By hunting for their food throughout the day, they will remain active and mentally stimulated.
Make sure not to hide the treats in a place where your dog is discouraged from rummaging through, like a laundry basket or drawer!
You can drop treats inside a rolled-up towel. Unroll it so your dog can get the treats, then let him figure out how to do it.
Schedule time together
All members of your family, including your pets, will be affected by the transition from working all day to being home all day. Schedule time together each day with a new routine. For a week, walk for fifteen minutes every day. Spend fifteen minutes petting your pet in a quiet area while giving them your undivided attention.
Observe your pet's reaction the first day and how they respond one week later. You may find that they begin to seek you out when it is time to play.
The activity may be continued daily or you may want to add another activity, depending on how much the pet liked it.
Make tunnels and forts
Having a pillow and a blanket fort is a classic childhood memory for most of us. You can build a fort with old boxes that you've received recently and allow your pet to explore the new “building” Even better; hide some treats around!
Ensure that there is an entrance and exit for each cat if you have more than one and that all your pets can run off and leave anytime they feel a little claustrophobic.
Turn the TV on
Pets can like watching TV too! The internet is full of hilarious videos of pets reacting to what’s on television. Dogs who watched footage of other dogs playing exhibited signs of excitement, such as tail-wagging and whining.
So why do pets seem to respond so positively to watching TV? One possibility is that they are simply fascinated by the constant barrage of images and sounds. After all, for a species that relies heavily on scent and sound to communicate, television must seem like a very strange way of conveying information.
You can try a treat-dispensing toy, or make one out of a bottle! Your pet will have loads of fun swatting the toy around for hours and trying to get at the treats.
Interactive toys can help pets stay active and engaged, both mentally and physically. They also provide an outlet for natural behaviors, such as chewing, scratching, and digging. As a result, interactive toys can help reduce the risk of obesity, joint problems, and boredom-related behaviors such as excessive licking or chewing.
Furthermore, interactive toys can help build bonds between pets and their owners. When choosing an interactive toy for a pet, it is important to select one that is appropriate for your pet’s size, age, and energy level.
You can use toys or treats to mark specific places in your home that you want your pet to explore. For example, you can hide a toy in one room and then lead your pet to that room, letting them find the toy as a reward for exploration.
Another way to encourage exploration is to create an obstacle course. This can be done by setting up chairs or other objects in different rooms and rewarding your pet for negotiating the obstacles.
You can also set up tunnels or gates that lead to different rooms or areas of the house. This will give your pet a sense of adventure while still keeping them safe.
Finally, you can take your pet on a walk along a new route. Nothing beats exploring together!
Playing on the couch
Often, spending more time indoors means binge-watching TV shows on the couch. Besides enjoying TV time with you, your pet can also have activity without needing to leave the couch.
Keep stuffed animals, feather wands, and tug-toys close by in a basket or drawer. If your pet is interacting with a toy independently, verbal encouragement is sometimes all they need. Encourage them with words of praise so that they are motivated to participate in the activity for a longer period.
It's no secret that entertainment amuses us humans, but it's also important for our pets. Just like humans, animals need entertainment to stay occupied and healthy.
By making a few tweaks to your house and lifestyle, you can keep your pet entertained and out of trouble. Your shoes and furniture will thank you!