The Importance of Mental Stimulation
Do you play fetch with your dog and run them for half an hour only to find them more hyper at the end? Or maybe they nap for an hour and then they’re up and ready to go?
This is because in addition to physical activity, dogs also need to be mentally stimulated in order to be fully relaxed.
Compare it aerobics vs. weight lifting. Aerobics gets your heart pumping and your blood flowing, often leaving you pumped up and high on endorphins by the end. Lifting weights is more structured and require mental focus as well, leading to a more relaxed, tired state at the end.
There are many ways to stimulate your dogs brain:
– Puzzle toys and interactive games like “find the toy/ treat”
– Short obedience/trick training sessions
– Adding obedience to your game of fetch, like getting the dog to sit and wait before retrieving the ball and upon return.
– Doggie daycare, like that offered at Doggie Playland, which offers structured play and mental stimulation throughout the day.
Activities like the above mentioned, in conjunction with physical exercise, lead to a calm, happy dog.