Dogs love playing hide and seek – quite possibly even more than children do. You can even play with a puppy.
Start with just one cup to introduce the concept. Place a treat underneath, and lift to reveal it when your dog noses the cup. Gradually add more cups and more movements to increase the challenge.
Fetching isn’t just for retrievers. In fact, most dogs need to be taught to fetch, even if it’s in their genetics. It’s easy for a dog to chase after a ball; it’s tough to teach them to bring it back.
Once your dog knows “fetch,” you can teach him to return the toy to his toy box, instead of your hand. Play fetch with the toy box in front of you, and encourage your dog to drop it inside.
Tugging is a full-body workout for your dog. Most dogs will play tug with you with just a little bit of encouragement. It’s a great way to build confidence in shy dogs.
You can teach your dog to do basic nosework so he can feel like one of those hero search-and-rescue dogs.
Run around your home or yard, stopping every once in a while to call your dog. Once they reach you, praise them and take off running again.
Dogs are capable of learning words, and find it easier when those words are associated with their favorite toys, treats and people. Many dogs can learn to identify toys and objects, and will retrieve them by name.
If your dog has never done agility, you can get started by teaching him to jump through an ordinary hula hoop.
Start by holding treats in a closed hand, not allowing the dog to have any until he backs away. Once he backs away, open your hand and if he stays back, offer him a treat.