Golden Retrievers are an intelligent and energetic breed that needs plenty of physical and mental stimulants to stay healthy. Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting confinement, both humans and dogs are suffering. The lack of physical and mental activity, as well as the lack of socialization, is having an enormous impact on our overall health. Therefore, you must find some activities to keep you and your dog engaged during these tough times. In this article, you will learn how to keep your Golden Retriever entertained during coronavirus shutdown.
How To Keep Your Golden Retriever Entertained During Lockdown
These are some of the most interesting games and activities to keep your Golden entertained during the COVID-19 pandemic.
These games are designed to develop your dog’s thinking, problem-solving, comprehension, and memory. These are so-called cognitive games and exercises.
Ok, start with placing and closing a treat in one fist and make sure your Golden sees this. Now present him with both of your closed fists and say the command “You choose!” Open the fist he sniffs first. If that fist is empty, say “Too bad!” and repeat the game. If the fist he first sniffed has a treat in it, let him eat it, and repeat the game. After your Golden Retriever chose the fist-treat with an accuracy of about 80% (8 out of 10 times), you can start playing this game with other objects and situations. For example, you can present him with an option to choose food or enter or not enter the room.
This can also extend to walks and outside activity where you present your Golden with an option to either go outside or not. Playing this game will not only keep you and your Golden Retriever entertained, but it will also help in developing your dog’s cognitive capacities. This is why you should play this with your Golden as much as possible.
Your Golden will love this game. Start with an object your dog frequently interacts with. For example, his favorite toy or a ball. Say “Toy touch” point to the toy, and invite him to touch the toy with his paws or nose. Now repeat the game until your dog is reliably touching the toy on your command.
Now you can try the same thing with a different object. Eventually, you can place both objects close to each other and see if your dog will touch the one you requested. After your Golden Retriever successfully passes this test, you can add other objects to this game.
Muffin Tin Game
For this game, you will need a muffin tin and something to cover all the cups in the tin. Tennis balls are perfect for this, but if you don’t have that many, you can improvise and use something else. Place a treat in each cup and cover the cup with a tennis ball or some other object. Now, show your Golden Retriever that there is a treat under each tennis ball and let him work for his treats. It would be good to secure the muffin tin, so it stays in place once your Golden starts moving the balls and eating the treats. You can also hold the muffin tin with your hands as your dog is entertained with finding and eating the goodies.
A Mug Game!
In some aspects, this game is similar to the “You choose” game. However, there are some differences. Take three mugs and put them on the floor. Show your Golden a treat, and then place it under one mug. Now say the command “Find it!” and wait until your dog sniffs one of the mugs. Just as is the case with the “You choose ” game if the treat is under that mug let your Golden eat it. However, if your Golden hasn’t guessed the treat-mug, say “Too bad!” and repeat the game. Once your dog reliably finds the treat-mug, start slowly and briefly shuffling the mugs and gradually increase the difficulty by shuffling them faster and for longer periods.
These are tough times that left many of us in a bad physical and mental shape. Unfortunately, the pandemic is not showing signs of slowing down, with reports of new mutated strains of the virus coming from the UK. That’s why you must learn how to keep your Golden Retriever and yourself entertained. A bit of imagination and creativity will help you and your best friend go through all this. In the end, I hope this article will help you. Stay safe, healthy, and ever-playful.