Training games

Discussion of useful training and pet care tools.

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Mr Moff
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Joined: Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:41 am

Training games

Post by Mr Moff » Sat Jan 08, 2011 3:42 pm

I want to kno what kind of games you can play with a dog inside that wil stimulate the brain an help them learn i have a 5 mon th springer and thought it would help her calm down a bit maybe seaking games?with things tht u would find in the house? :lol:

Fundog
Posts: 3874
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2008 8:31 am
Location: A little gambling town in the high desert

Re: Training games

Post by Fundog » Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:10 pm

Oooh, this is going to be soooo much fun! (I hope the program doesn't "time out" on me before I can get it all posted!) :lol: :lol: :lol:

As I've mentioned in a previous thread, I have a seven year old Springer/retriever, and a three year old Llewellin Setter. My Springer is super smart (too smart for my own good, lol!), and my Llewellin came to us with significant retardation from the neglect she suffered in her puppy hood. However, since Dottie has been with us, she has actually gotten a bit smarter!

Here are some of the games and puzzles I do with them: "Find It!" At first when teaching this game, you will need to allow your pup to watch you as you hide the goodies about the house, then take her around pointing out the hiding places--- the same way you would for a human toddler's first Easter egg hunt. As she "discovers" each treat, excitedly praise with, "Good FIND!" As she catches on (with a Springer it will only take one or two times to figure this out), you can start placing her in another room-- if she does not yet know a sit/stay, have someone stay in there with her-- to see she cannot peek as you hide the treats. :wink: It won't take long before you will be able to go back into the room she is waiting in and give her the "Find it!" command. Then enjoy the show as she gets right to work, snuffling her sniffer in all the usual hiding places. Get creative and try to find new hiding places--- she will be able to find a single bite of kibble hidden in a manky old shoe! :shock:

Hide and Seek: This one is pretty straight forward. You hide somewhere, then call your pup or whistle, and see how long it takes her to find you. If you have children or grandchildren, they will delight in playing this game too.

Fetch: I'm sure you've already been playing this game. Springers are "natural" retrievers, and love fetch, especially water retrieves. 8) If you are careful, you can even play inside the house without breaking stuff.

Lay a track: This is best done outside, in the yard or a field. Take a bit of hot dog or cheese or other smooshy treat, and squish it with your shoe. Then walk around (start with a short straight line to begin with) to get the scent on the trail. Drop more bits of what you've squished on your shoe at various points, with the "mother lode" at the end. As she gets good at it, you can make the trails more complicated, with turns and over obstacles and rough terrain. If you intend to use her to hunt, you can get some bird scent at a sporting goods store, and a training decoy (or even better, plant live birds, if you can get them!) and lay trails with the bird scent (Springers are also excellent rabbit dogs!) and hide the scented decoy at the end. You can simulate the "flush" with a game of fetch.

Puzzles: I already mentioned hiding a tidbit inside several boxes nestled inside each other. You can make it even more fun by packing the boxes with paper or rags or toys she has to pull out in order to find the tidbits hidden inside.

Use an old muffin tin, put a tidbit inside each muffin cup, then place a tennis ball over each cup. She has to remove the tennis balls to get to the tidbits.

I also save egg cartons and hide tidbits inside the egg cups. Our egg cartons have little vent holes in the top of the carton, which is really good for my little Dottie, as she can push the carton around to make the tidbits fall out of the holes. Annie can open the cartons before you can count to ten! :lol:

I sometimes save the plastic coffee canisters. Annie can take the lid off by grabbing hold of the lip of the lid, then shaking her head and throwing the canister. With Dottie, I have to cut a hole in the lid so the treats can come out when she pushes it around.

You can stack towels on the floor, and hide bits between the layers for her to root around in. (She might enjoy having a pile of towels to "bury" her favorite toys and bones in too!)

Empty cardboard paper towel and toilet paper tubes are fun too--- just plug the ends with some newspaper.

Hmmm.... that's all that comes to mind at the moment. I know we've had a couple of threads devoted to this very subject: "home made dog puzzles" I'll see if I can find the links for you. 8)
If an opportunity comes to you in life, say yes first, even if you don't know how to do it.

Fundog
Posts: 3874
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2008 8:31 am
Location: A little gambling town in the high desert

Re: Training games

Post by Fundog » Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:37 pm

Here are the links to past threads about exercising our dogs. Many of them are about making agility courses-- yes, you can make one inside your house, out of stuff like laundry baskets, furniture, and cardboard boxes! But the last link also has a thread about "nifty homemade dog toys." Use your imagination to come up with new ideas for your own puppy, and be sure to share them with us! :D



viewtopic.php?f=6&t=2750

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viewtopic.php?f=6&t=4993
If an opportunity comes to you in life, say yes first, even if you don't know how to do it.

Fundog
Posts: 3874
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2008 8:31 am
Location: A little gambling town in the high desert

Re: Training games

Post by Fundog » Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:42 pm

Here's another one I found, from a different site:

http://ezinearticles.com/?Homemade-Dog- ... id=3211380

And another I really like:

http://www.make-and-build-dog-stuff.com ... -toys.html

Another idea I found from another site was to rinse out an empty plastic milk bottle, cut holes in the sides, fill with a few tidbits, and let the dog toss it around trying to get the goodies out. You can do the same thing with empty plastic soda bottles.
If an opportunity comes to you in life, say yes first, even if you don't know how to do it.

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