Let’s talk Enrichment..

Before I started my training with the Victoria Stilwell Academy, I (like most dog owners) assumed a daily walk to satisfy the need for physical exercise was enough for my dogs. I was often left baffled as to why, after a long walk, my dogs were still not tired out or settling down. When I learnt about the benefits of mental stimulation it seemed so obvious!

Just like us humans, dogs need to keep their brains active as well as their bodies so a daily routine of mental and physical exercise will leave them content and tired.

So what does enrichment mean? Here’s a few simple and cost effective ideas ?…

  • A Kong or other toy stuffed with tempting treats which they have to work out how to release. The Kong Wobbler is a favourite in my house
  • Hide food around the garden for them to find. Dogs love using their noses and this one doesn’t cost a penny
  • Feed them their dinner in a puzzle toy rather than a boring dinner bowl
  • Licky mats are great for calming and very cheap to buy. Smother them in liver paste or Greek yoghurt
  • Snuffle rugs.. again ideal for dogs to use their noses to find food hidden in the rug
  • An empty cardboard box filled with paper and treats. Again these things don’t have to cost money..!
  • The mooch walk! Rather then worry about covering loads of distance on your walks, let your dog follow their nose and take you for a walk. Smelling and sniffing the environment will be hugely enriching for them and I guarantee they will be tired afterwards!
  • A short training session, dogs love learning. Teach them tricks or life skills to grow confidence

Let your dog use their brain, they are cleverer than you think! ?