There are times when a person adopts a puppy impulsively because it was love at first sight. After falling in love with the dog, one discovers that living with the dog is another story. The dog can't stay still, is always wanting attention and will possibly chew anything in sight.
What is the cause of this? This dog has a high energy drive and has not expended enough energy.
How can you tell if a dog has abundant energy?
- They will bark excessively. They will find a way to bark because they either are not getting enough attention or are just plain bored. Usually this is referred to as nuisance barking.
- They will chew up anything. One minute, you'll have some papers on your desk. The next, they will be shredded as you see them laid out on the floor.
- A walk isn't enough. You get home from a long day at work. You're exhausted. You take your pooch for a 30 minute walk and get back home. After you feed the dog, he's ready for playtime.
- You've bought all these toys and it won't play with them. The reason this happens is the toys are not mental or physically stimulating enough for these creatures. They need more than just a toy to work off their excess stimulating.
- It will nip at you or one of your other pets. They are trying to engage you to play and as puppies, that's how they would get their litter mates to play.
What To DoWhile the easiest thing is to do is give the dog away, it can be a copout in most situations. This should be a last resort because as a dog owner, we take on a huge responsibility bringing dogs into our lives.
Instead, you may want to try these activities for dogs:
- Dog Obedience. This will give a new dog structure and a job to do. Dogs live to please. Obedience will help them shift their focus.
- Go Running. Even if you're not the type to run, a few short sprints on your walk will help your dog get more exercise and lower their energy levels. If your a regular runner, if your dog has excessive energy, incorporating them into your running routine is a great way to benefit you both.
- Dog Agility (pictured right). Dog agility is becoming increasingly popular. Dogs love the challenge it presents because it gives them a job to do. It involves, running, jumping and balance. It also builds upon your bond with your dog. These classes can get expensive though. If you find yourself in that situation, a good substitute is picking up a couple of hula hoops from the store and teaching them to jump through them in your backyard.
- Take them to a dog park. Dog parks are becoming more popular these days as dog owners are looking for a way for their dogs to be able to run free. It's a great way to socialize your dogs with other dogs yet you must watch your dog closely because there's always a chance that a fight can break out. The newest trend in dog parks are indoor dog parks. These are great because you don't have to worry about your pooch getting affected by the elements, especially those dogs that have short hair.
- Give it a job! Many high energy dogs are that way because they were bred to do a job. Some of them may have herded sheep or hunted prey. Those instincts stay even though society has changed. If you have a working dog they may benefit from being trained to become a search and rescue dog or a therapy dog.
Let's Discuss!What do you do to keep your dog's energy level in check?
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