“A tired dog is a happy dog. Better yet, a tired dog is a happy owner.”
Animal Lover, Dog Walker, Doggie Foster Mom, Animal Behaviour Nerd
There are just some days when you get home beat. Getting out the door to give Fido or Freida enough exercise to keep him or her quiet for the evening just isn’t going to happen. So, how to keep them–and by extension you–from climbing the walls and getting into trouble?
Enter brain games! Food puzzle games are great brain games that help tire dogs out. They certainly aren’t a replacement for physical exercise, but they sure help burn off some energy in a pinch.
Moxie, the lovable foster dog from HugABull Rescue & Advocacy is a fun loving American pit bull who loves nothing more than playing fetch, playing fetch, playing fetch and playing food puzzle games. She is a very clever, athletic girl and rather than build up more endurance and more muscle–exhausting me in the process–I’ve elected to supplement her physical exercise with mental exercise. She LOVES it.
DIY Dog Food Puzzles
Note: All of these toys contain Miss Moxie’s regular kibble with the odd bonus prize treat, especially when she starts getting bored with a particular toy. She gets approximately 30% of her meals this way with the remainder split between her bowl and more interactive training/learning games.
Also note: I make up a variety of pet names for the dogs in my care. I make no apology.
If you keep a lot of boxes around you don’t want chewed, I wouldn’t recommend this food puzzle, but since that isn’t an issue at my house, they are fair game.
The FedEx box was an extra challenge because it was awkward to get the kibble out. Picking it up at the open (smellier) end made the kibble drop further into the box rather than out. Stepping on it just squashed the box rather than flipping it as works with other boxes. That kept Wonder Dawg Moxie busy for a while.
The orange box was more of a challenge…for ME. I started with half the holes taped up partially. Too easy. All holes taped partially, still too easy. All but a few holes taped fully and the remaining partially taped finally made the box challenging enough to keep Miss Moxie truly entertained. (Damn, she’s cute!)