Enrichment for Older Dogs: How to Keep Your Pup Excited!
As our dogs get older, it’s natural for them to become a little less active. However, this doesn’t mean they no longer need physical and mental stimulation. Proper enrichment for older dogs can provide both in a super fun way!
Keeping our senior dogs stimulated with enrichment brings many benefits, allowing them to continue to enjoy life even as their age begins to slow them down.
So, let’s take a look at what enrichment means for older dogs and how we can go about doing it!
Why is Enrichment So Important?
First off, what actually is enrichment?
Enrichment, in its simplest terms, refers to enriching your dog’s life by letting them take part in activities that are naturally interesting and rewarding for them. Such activities are usually related to what they would do in the wild, such as hunting and scavenging.
For example, our dogs benefit from activities which allow them to use their senses and instincts. Hunting and finding treats hidden throughout the home is an example of an enrichment activity that is very fulfilling for the average pupper!
The need for enrichment stems from how our dogs live in the modern world. As our dogs are simply given their food, they no longer need to use their brain or senses to survive anymore.
This can, over time, lead to a dog that is bored or even depressed. As senior dogs are less physically active, this issue can be worse within the older generation.
Therefore, enrichment is a great way of ensuring our dogs keep their brains busy and enjoy life.
Enrichment Activities for Senior Dogs
So, what are these mythical enrichment activities and how do we do them?
Luckily, it’s nothing too difficult – anything that gets them to use their senses and problem-solving abilities will make for a great enrichment activity!
There are many puzzle toys on the market which are good at keeping your dog’s brain busy. For example, KONG has a fantastic line of toys that are designed to keep your dog mentally stimulated during play.
However, enrichment doesn’t need to take the form of a specialized toy either. For some dogs, especially those who love a good sniff, just simply taking them on a walk somewhere new can prove to be an enriching experience. All the new sights and smells can be a brilliant way of exciting your dog’s brain.
DIY Dog Enrichment Games
Creating your own DIY enrichment games can be a nice way of ensuring your older dog remains mentally stimulated. You can fine-tune each game to your particular doggo’s preferences and physical ability. It can also be a fun way of getting the family involved!
There are plenty of ideas online for DIY games that you can create with common household objects. Many of them follow the idea of letting your dog hunt or solve a problem for a delicious reward!
If you’d like to take a look at some starting ideas, you can check the link here for a few guides to making some basic enrichment toys.
Remember, it’s a good idea to keep things fresh! Always be creating and exposing your dog to something new, as that is the best way of ensuring they have fun.
Enrichment for Older Dogs – Help Them Feel Like a Puppy Again!
By enriching our older dog’s lives, we can ensure that they can continue to have fun well into old age. It’s a fantastic way of maintaining their quality of life regardless of the challenges age can bring.
Remember, it’s always important to continue to take care of their coat during all this play! We at Groomit are always on hand to help give your pooch’s coat all the attention and care that it deserves.
If you’re interested in seeing what we can do for your senior dog, you can take a look at our services here.
All in all, we hope we’ve given you some great ideas for enrichment in this article! Let’s all do our best for our senior dogs!