Do you like fun?
Yes, of course you do!
It’s not just about fun either, as when our dogs are disobedient, restless, or always on the lookout for trouble, finding ways to have fun with our dogs can be a fantastic resolution.
So let’s talk about fun things to do with your dog!
Fun activity #1: Hiking with your dog
What better way to get fresh air and discover new places than hiking with your dog? Apps like AllTrails are really useful for finding dog-friendly hikes in your area, with information on length, time, and difficulty.
You may also be surprised that size or breed isn’t much of an issue when it comes to hiking.
Fun activity #2: Join a Dog Agility or Dance With Your Dog Class
Our dogs respond very well to stimulus, and also to quality fun time with us.
Dog agility classes can be found everywhere, and are a perfect way to have fun with your dog while training them at the same time. A well-trained dog is also great for you, especially when they’re impressively obedient in front of your friends and neighbours.
Another novel way of having fun with your dog are Dance With Your Dog classes. These have become very popular in recent years, so you should find a class nearby fairly easily, especially if you live in a city.
Dancing with your dog, and seeing others dance with their dogs, is so much more fun than those Salsa classes you took when you were single!
Fun activity #3: Water Play
Dogs love water!
Enjoying water play with your dog can be as simple as going down to the local creek or beach and throwing a ball around, but have you considered SUP boarding with your dog or the latest craze of Dock Diving?
Fun activity #4: Canine Running
Often called CaniCross or CaniX, this is basically jogging or running with your dog attached to you with a bungee and harness. In Australia there are running clubs and groups everywhere, and you’ve probably already thought about joining one.
Running with your dog is so much more fun, so consider joining a running club. Sometimes your dog can be a contestant too!
ParkRun (UK/Aus) or the K9-5K runs held in the US are great events where you can get active with your dog.
Just don’t overdo it with your dog. Excessive running can be bad for their joints.
Running with your dog is actually a discipline of dog mushing, which also includes seriously fun stuff like scootering (with a scooter), cycling, or hiking.
Related: Dog mushing – the best exercise with your dog, and serious fun!
Also related: Cycling with a dog
Fun activity #5: Join (or Create) a Social Group
Social Media and websites like Meetup.com have given rise to all manner of social groups for dog lovers. I bet there’s one very near you, so have a search around and join one.
Not only will this give you great opportunities to take your dog to new places, but you and your dog will likely make great friends as well!
Fun activity #6: Try Geocaching
If you don’t know what geocaching is, it’s a high-tech treasure hunting game which is played throughout the world.
All you need is a smartphone! Just download the app and you’re away – it’s so easy, and so much fun! Geocaching with your dog will take you to places you’ve never been, and gives you the thrill of being an adventure seeker!
Fun activity #7: Train your dog to be a Therapy Dog
Training your dog to be a therapy dog means they can provide affection and comfort to people in hospitals, retirement homes, schools, hospices, and disaster areas.
But that’s not the only benefit.
Between you and me, off-the-record, it also helps you get your dog into places other dogs can’t. We’re talking shops, sports venues, casinos, planes, trains, and automobiles!
Your dog will also look cool with an assistance dog jacket and badges – all readily available online.
You want more ideas?
Still nothing that takes your fancy?
Check out 101 Ways to Do More with your Dog by Kyra Sundance – lots of great pics and some wonderful ideas (that I didn’t even know existed)
Remember, all these are just suggestions. Finding something you and your dog really love doing together will help to increase the bond between you, and keep both of you active and healthy in the process.
Don’t just rely on the neighbourhood walk. Mix it up and make it more fun for both of you!
Do you have something special you like to do with your dog/s? What other things could we add to a ‘work your dog’ list?