Dogs are smart and enjoy being active. They want to learn, be challenged, have fun, and experience the joys of a job well done.
Historically, dogs were bred to perform specific duties like assisting farmers, ranchers, sportsmen, and law enforcement officers. The abilities to think, problem solve and actively work were assets to their owners. Changes in lifestyle mean dogs today are more important to us for companionship rather than labor, and dogs no longer have to rely on their mental and physical abilities for basic survival. Dogs are naturally social and energetic so being sedentary can lead to boredom, bad behavior and possible health problems associated with obesity.
Enrolling your dog in a daycare program targets the social, emotional and physical wellness of your dog. Dogs that receive high levels of exercise and physical and mental stimulation are less likely to engage in destructive or bad behaviors due to boredom. Energy that is directed toward positive, healthy experiences and productive training and playtime leads to better behavior in public and at home.
Enrichment toys and activities are designed to challenge dogs to think, problem solve and stay active through brain games, challenging sensory work, and structured athletics and play. In a doggie daycare setting, enrichment activities can offer personal attention and help in reinforcing social manners and training. Besides free play, which is important too, structured games allow the dog to use instinct, skill and physical abilities during purposeful play.
Incorporating brain games and exercises at home provides the dog with a sense of accomplishment when the owner gives praise, trust and comfort in being an important member of the family.
- Solving food puzzles. Toys like KONG®, the Tricky Treat™ Ball, or the Twist ‘n Treat™ encourage problem-solving skills and patience.
- Hunting for food includes dividing up a serving of dry kibble and hiding small amounts around the house. This is a great activity to promote a healthy weight and slow down a fast eater.
- Learning scent games as part of advanced training for fun or involvement in search and rescue groups.
- Providing appropriate chew toys deflect attention away from furniture or your favorite pair of shoes if your dog is bored or experiences anxiety.
- Working with a game of fetch or hide-n-seek reinforces training skills and promotes moderate exercise.
- Playing chase. What dog doesn’t love running and being silly?
Attending a daycare program provides socialization, free play, exercise, and reinforces training skills!
“We have a terrific group of dogs in our program including many breeds that could benefit from the type of games and activities that match their energy level and desire to be mentally and physically challenged. Our professional trainers and daycare team enjoy providing activities, programs and special events to better meet the needs of our clients and students,” said Dr. Laura Weis, owner of Holiday House Pet Resort and Doylestown Veterinary Hospital.
If you are interested in enrolling your puppy or dog in our daycare program, call 215-345-6960 to schedule a daycare evaluation and ask about our training programs too. For current daycare clients interested in learning more about how canine enrichment activities or additional training sessions can benefit your dog, talk with one of the daycare teachers or ask to speak with a trainer.