DIY DOG PUZZLE TOYS - IMPROVE YOUR DOG'S HEALTH
You’re a loving dog parent, and it’s your job to ensure your pup lives a happy and healthy life. As we have discussed in previous blogs, being healthy isn’t all just about exercise; mental enrichment is incredibly important too. Focusing on ways to encourage your pup’s natural instincts like smelling, chewing, and is a way you can engage with your dog and stimulate their minds. Additionally, this stimulation helps prevent unwanted behaviors from your pup that occur when they are seeking to entertain themselves. DIY dog puzzle toys are a great way to achieve this goal.
Because so many people are working from home, many have had the opportunity to spend more time with their dog than they ever have before. The time you save on your commute is a great time to invest in creating some simple, inexpensive, DIY dog puzzle games for your pup. Puzzle games are great for dogs, and can keep your pup entertained for hours. As a reminder, make sure to actively supervise your dog when they are using these puzzle games as you would any other time your dog is playing with a toy.
THE MUFFIN TIN GAME
The Muffin Tin Game is a classic, super simply DIY dog puzzle toy anyone can create at home. To get started, you’ll need the following items:
- Old Muffin Tin ( ideally a 12 count tin)
- 12 Old but clean tennis balls
- Your pup’s kibble or small treats.
This game is a creative way to encourage your dog to use their sense of smell and desire to explore to find the reward! Hide small amounts of kibble under the balls for your pup to fine, it’s that simple.
This is also a great way to use dinner time as a way to provide enrichment for your dog, while slowing down those fast eating pups!
THE BOX PUZZLE GAME
More than likely you have some old boxes in a closet somewhere in your home. These boxes can be transformed into a very challenging, high reward dog puzzle toy in a matter of minutes. This is what you need:
- 3-4 Boxes that will fit inside one another.
- A treat your dog loves and looks forward to receiving
To set up this game, take the dog treat and place it in the smallest box you have. Then, please that closed box in the next largest box, and close the top by folding the flaps. Finally, place the second box in a third, and you’re ready to go!
Bring your pup over to the boxes, and let them find their way to the treat! As your pup gets fast and faster at this game, you can add more layers of boxes to slow down the time it takes them to finish.
PVC DOG PUZZLE TOY
Our last dog puzzle toy take a little more time to prep and create, but is much more durable and can be reused again and again. To start, you’ll need the following:
- A short piece of PVC pipe with end caps
- A power drill with a bit slightly larger than your pup’s kibble.
- Fine grit sandpaper.
To create this toy, drill several holes on all sides of the PVC pipe. It’s important that the holes are slightly larger than your dog’s kibble. When the holes are complete, make sure to run over any rough edges with the sandpaper to smooth off the edges.
Once sanded and cleaned, place one end cap on the pipe, and fill it with kibble. Place the other end on securely, and place it on the ground. As your dog move the toy, kibble will occasionally fall through the holes, encouraging them to engage with it more.
DOG PUZZLE TOYS - MENTAL ENRICHMENT FOR PUPS
With everyone’s daily routines changing so rapidly, it’s important to remember to set aside quality time with loved ones. Our top three DIY options are not only fun for your dog, but can be fun for the whole family as well. By involving your children and loved ones, you’ll discover a new and cost effective way to bond with your family. Once the toys are complete, everyone will be able to enjoy watching their furry family members interact with them, providing the much needed enrichment for you pups, and fun for the whole family.
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