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Lockdown 2020

So from March 24th 2020, the Government put the UK on a Lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19, restricting the amount of time we are allowed to go out for exercise. For some dogs one walk isn't enough and they can get very bored, which can later lead to unwanted habits. So on this page I am going to try and help with this, by adding ideas of activities you can try with your dog. 

Dog Parkour

A bit of Dog Parkour.... this is a fun activity which you can ask your dog to climb, jump on, off or over, scrambling and balancing on natural obstacles or man made obstacles. You can use all sorts on a walk like some stepping rocks, lower beam of a bridge, or a random wooden post in the park. You can help your dog by luring and treating, (but never force them to do anything they are not happy with).

Go rounds 

You can start off luring your dog with a treat around the barrel. Once they are used to the idea of going round it, you can put a word or 2 to the action, (like go round) and repeat a few times and reward. once this easier of for them and they are realise what is being asked of them luring can get less and less until you are eventually able to treat them after they have gone around the barrel themselves without the luring.

These barrels are garden pop up bins, but you can also use cones or even plant pots!


Go round 2 barrels at a time

Using the same method as 1 barrel, carry on luring with the treat across to the second barrel and back towards you. You can start with the barrels close together and then gradually pull them apart so that you can stand diagonally between 2 barrels and send them round on their own.

Go round 3 barrels at a time

So the barrels were in a slight triangle shape.

Same method applies for teaching 2 barrels as the 3 barrels. You may need to walk with your dog around them first and they get the idea. You will eventually be able to mostly stand in one area using your arm signals and body, facing each barrel you want the dog to go round.


Send to a target 

Place a treat or toy of high value a few feet away. Show your dog the reward and walk them away a few feet. Ask them to wait, if they can't wait on their own, just gently hold collar, and release them. The dog should go straight to it. If using a treat you can gradually start decreasing the amount of times the treat is put onto the target and once the dog is at the target then treat.



Send to a target past a barrel

To do this place your target (I'm using a touch n go lotus ball with a treat) a few feet away past the barrel, and sit your dog a few feet away on other side of the barrel. Ask them to wait (again you can hold gently onto collar if need be) and release them, using their release word. This can be "ok" or "go". You can practice this standing next to your dog, level with the barrel or at the target (if they have a good wait)

Triangle puzzle

Puzzles are a great way to keep your dog's brain ticking. There are 2 sides to the dog's brain. Left and right cerebal hemispheres. Within both sides they are split into 4 areas. The frontal, and temporal lobes are contributing to Robbie's intelligence, alertness, memory. The thalamus in Robbie's brain is allowing him to selectively concentrate and focus on his puzzle ๐Ÿ˜

1 Hoop to target

We start off using just 1 hoop at a time. To get your dog used to going through it you can lure them through with a treat or a toy and reward once they have gone through. Once they are used to that we can use our send onto a target activity to then put the hoop in the way, so they go through the hoop to get to the target. You can do this with the dog close to the hoop to start with and then make it more challenging by setting a larger distance from the hoop and the target further away on the other side of the hoop.

Barrel, Hoop, Barrel

Using 2 barrels and a hoop.

We go back to using day 4s activity with the 2 barrels on their own. We can now add a hoop between the 2 barrels. Set them up on one side of the hoop, so when you release them they go through it first and then send them round the barrel back through the hoop and round the barrel again! โ˜€๏ธ๐Ÿถ

Find hidden treats

Find the treats. Place a nice smelly treat (I've used cheese) under a tin and let their nose do the work, and their brain work out how to get it. You can use other house hold things like yoghurt pots too!

Jump over a bar

I've used a washing line prop, a flower pot and poked the other end in the lattice fencing. You can lure them over with a treat or toy and using the word over. They will soon get the idea and you wont have to lure, them you can reward them once they are over the other side. 

Baton Jumping

Baton jumping is asking your dog to jump over a hand held bar. This could be something like a weave pole (which is what Iโ€™m using) or a washing line prop.

To do this keep the bar as low as possible and using a nice smelly tasty treat lure the dog across and over the bar using your other hand. When you have done this a few times you can start to add a command in, like โ€œoverโ€. After practicing this a few times and the dog is confident at going over the bar, you can raise the bar a little higher. For them to jump it higher, they may need a little more space to take a bit of run up, to clear the bar.


Snuffle Box

You can create your snuffle box using an old shoe box. For inside the shoe box, you can use paper, tissue paper, or any scrap material lying around. Hide some tasty treats or even their dinner between the material or paper, to keep them busy, and give their noses and brain a good workout.

Hoopers Loo Roll Relay


Wipe Paws

For this trick, you need some smelly, tasty treats and a mat. Place the treat under the mat and ask your dog to find it. If they use their paw to dig at the mat then give them a treat. Repeat this a few times, and encourage them to use both feet. Wait til they scratch with one foot and then the other and then treat. You can then start to put words to the action.