Here in SW Missouri we are in the throes of an incredibly hot, dry summer. Aside from that or as a result, I'm not sure, Bentley seems bored which gets him in trouble. He's 8 months old, potty trained (usually!), and a pretty good boy, but he's now going through another chewing spell with a vengeance! Early on he did damage to the base of our 75-year old pedestal table, then we went through a honeymoon stage on the chewing, but now he's chewing the woodwork in our nice house. Our leather recliners are a favorite target, as well. He has a huge outdoor pen but with 100 degree temps he can't be left out there. His only outings are potty breaks on a leash and, believe me, it's too hot to go for walks. The potty breaks are even difficult.
My question: I can't play indoor fetch with him all day long, or sit with his hot little body on my lap, so what kinds of toys/activities can we do to help with this boredom?
Can he do any tricks - shake hands, sit up and beg, hide and seek?
My two previous boys favourite games when they were bored was "seek" - I'd put some kibble or little treats in various places around the living room and hall for them to find - sort of like a treasure hunt. Put the treats on, behind, under, things for him to find - you can start very easy and work up to more difficult to find places, and tell him "seek!" When we first started, mine came round with me and saw where I put things; later on they had to wait in the kitchen until I'd done, so we were doing a little bit of obedience work too. (Just make sure that the kibble, etc, come out of of his daily allowance unless you want a real fatty tub of a boy! )
I think someone recently recommended a good book on brain games that you could take a look at, and there are also a number of doggy brain game toys around that you could investigate too.
I was thinking more in terms of something he could do on his own while I do housework, read, surf the web, etc. I feel as I'm involved with every moment of his day--either playing with him, taking him out to potty or checking to see if is doing something naughty.
Have you tried a Kong? Lots of dogs like it. Here's a link, they're sold on most pet stores.
Kongs are wonderfulllll...lol :lol:
I got Brooklyn this toy: http://furlongspetsupply.com/plush_p...e_dog_toy.aspx
and she LOVES it. I hide treats and chews and stuff in there two and she spends ages trying to get all the balls out. You have to do it with her the first few times, but now I just throw it down and she goes nuts. Also a "Babble Ball" keeps her hilariously going for hours too (google it). I also only feed her out of toys like the Buster Cube, Bob A Lot (http://www.amazon.com/StarMark-Bob-L.../dp/B003YHB8EI) and other food dispensers...so you can do that as well and that will keep him busy for a while. Kongs too. I basically just measure out her food in the morning and use that throughout the day stuffed into things ;) Also, I change Brooklyns toys every day, so she doesnt get bored and goes through a cycle of toys in the week and then we start over again.
Bully Sticks will keep you going for a while and believe it or not...Deer Antlers are the best chew out there! They last ages, don't splinter, low in fat and really safe to chew on. Just google Deer Antlers and there are a lot. Get the "split" ones though as they keep them interested. Brookylyn has been chewing on a spit piece for about a month now! Brooky also went through a "I'm going to suddenly chew everything" stage at 7 months too...so, I just got TONS of chew things (pig ears, bully sticks, antlers, pig snouts, sheep ears, etc) and changed them up daily. It sounds like he is wanting to chew, and that is an okay thing, he just needs an outlet. Also, ice cubes are great in the summer and also, this is a GREAT trick...get a large tupperware, fill it with water and add a splash of chicken stock for flavor...then add in some treats, carrots, a chew, whatever and freeze it. When it is frozen, plop it out back and he will be at it for hours! And it is great because since you froze treats inside, every little while he gets a reward!
What else....oh yeah, when Brooklyn when through this, tabasco was my best friend. I put it on what I didnt want her to chew. As for our wood table, well, I wrapped foil around the base (she hates the sound of it) and then brushed it with tabasco...she went for it and got a horrible hot taste! And she never went back. I still have it on the table until I know I can totally trust her. Vick's Vapor rub is good too (where you can put it at least).
Just change things up, get lots and lots of different chews, toys, etc. Make it interactive so give her food out of toys/kongs/etc. so his mind keeps going. Get some knuckle bones from the butcher and let him chew those. The thing is to let him chew...but on the right things :) If you get him some plastic chews or something, smear some peanut butter or honey or cheese on it to get him interested.
Lots of fun stuff out there :)