We hope you and your dog have been enjoying the #PAW5EnrichedLifeChallenge! Miss Molly and the pack are loving all the games and puzzles, and treats as we find ways of covering the 6 categories of enrichment! Today, it is time for us to kick off Day 3 of the challenge! Raise your paw if you’re ready. Enough talk! Miss Molly is excited to get the day started, especially for the nose work will be doing!
For Day 3 of the #PAW5EnrichedLifeChallenge we have a fun cardboard box puzzle and a muffin tin puzzle planned, along with a nice walk to see new sights and smell new smells. And, I’m sure the pups will enjoy the treat of the day – a Stuffed Apple! We also have a new Tunnel Training exercise and of, of course, all dogs love “nose work” and treat hunting!
Nose Work, Puzzles & Tunnels to Stimulate their Minds!
Cardboard Box Puzzle
Simply put kibble inside a closed box. You can start with an easier puzzle first by cutting one side of the box, then each time making that hole smaller, increasing the challenge for them. Don’t be surprised when some clean up is required, they are likely going to destroy that box!
Dogs love apples! There are a few recipes you could try with this, but we suggest this seasonal recipe — it’s perfect for both the fall and you Halloween lovers! Even better, there are some good modifications you can make to it, depending on any allergies your pup may have!
Tunnel training is one of many different types of agility training that implements verbal cues, performing tasks, and maintaining bodily awareness. This can be intimidating at first for your pup, and it will likely take some time, but in the end they’ll benefit so much from it (they’ll even grow to love it!).
Step 1: Keep the tunnel open, but at a short distance. You will benefit in this training if you have someone with you, or an assistant. Have the assistant hold your dog at one end while you walk to the other. Instruct your dog to go through the tunnel; use word like “Tunnel” or “Go through”.
Step 2: Repeat step one, while gradually lengthening the tunnel. Using your assistant and tunnel word, coaxing your dog through the tunnel, then rewarding him.
Step 3: Now have your assistant step aside and send your dog through the tunnel yourself. As you approach the open tunnel, give your dog a signal and the tunnel word, then run around to greet him at the other end. Reward your dog as he comes through the other end.
Step 4: Keep doing these steps, gradually extending the open tunnel to its full length.
Step 5: Eventually move up to a full-length regulation open tunnel. You can even start implementing in tunnel bends, increasing the challenge. You can also start using hand gestures instead of verbal commands, if you wish. Always remember to reward them for a job well done!
You can find these tunnels in a number of places, with a decently wide range in prices. But if you you’re looking for a more wallet-friendly one, you can actually check out places like Toys ‘R Us! If you’d rather use supplies you have at home, you can build a tunnel with two chairs and a blanket or sheet.
Nose Work / Treat Hunt
This of course is focused on scents; use something that your dog loves and really knows the smell of or a treat that is more pungent than others.
Have your dog in his stay position; while out of his sight, place his favorite toys or treats around the corner, just slightly hidden. Your dog may get a little frustrated at first as you do this, but he’ll catch on! If he is struggling, feel free to point it out. Also always encourage him as he’s close, you want to make this fun and exciting for him!
You can also drag the treat on the ground, making a scent trail for them to follow, then as they get better stop doing that for them.
Eventually make it harder for them to find their toys or treats, increasing the challenge and making the search that much more enriching for them.
Muffin Tin Puzzle
Keep the tin upright and divide the kibble up between the cups. Add difficulty by covering each section with a tennis ball or other toy.
For the full PAW5 Enriched Life Challenge with ground rules, advice, activity instructions, and alternative activities, head over to the PAW5 Enriched Life Challenge home page.
We’d love to hear how your day went!
What was your pup’s favorite activity?
Share in the comments below, and post on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter using the hashtag #PAW5EnrichedLifeChallenge to show off your progress!
Be sure and come back early tomorrow for Day 4 of the PAW5 Enriched Life Challenge. We will have a new daily menu of fun pawsome activities!
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