It’s tempting to stay cozy inside when the snow flies, but your Mojo still needs a ton of exercise. He or she is used to running amok around the backyard, which is soon to become a slippery winter wonderland. This can be the start of a frustrating season for you both. A bored dog gets into trouble.

They know how to get your attention and won’t mind whether you show them displeasure or praise because, one way or another, you are focused on them. Yay! This may lead to your dog eating something dangerous, or precious, and relieving themselves on your bedroom carpet. A dog that doesn’t get enough exercise also runs the risk of obesity, which can lead to a long list of health problems that sometimes cannot be corrected. You want your dog to stay fit through the winter so that they’re ready to run circles around the backyard again as soon as spring allows. Here are some ideas to help direct your dog’s energy away from your favourite slippers.

Doggie Daycare. New Approach Canine is The Place to Be every day. Our clients rave about the difference in their dog’s behaviour when given the opportunity to burn off energy at our house compared to spending hours alone at yours. Send your dog every day, or just a couple of days a week; schedules are flexible.

Puzzle balls, obstacle courses, and treasure hunts are a ton of fun for both of you. Just be sure that you aren’t overfeeding your dog. A quarter of an apple can be cut into many pieces for a treasure hunt, and pet stores have mini treats that fit into puzzle balls.

Eliminate food altogether when you’re creating an obstacle course, your dog will enjoy your praise just as much. Play catch indoors! Just move that heirloom vase out of the hallway first.

Set up indoor playdates with other dogs, or your dog’s favourite humans. Grandma loves to entertain all of her grandchildren, even the furry ones!

Sign up to refresh training, (or sign up for the first time!). It’s never too late for your dog to learn some new obedience commands, and it can be beneficial to polish established ones. Has your dog adopted some bad habits? Would you like to practice training with distraction in preparation for camping next summer? New Approach Canine can help!

Finally, bundle you both up and go for walks anyway this winter. The exercise and fresh air will do you both good, and your dog can experience a whole new range of scents and say hello to the neighbours. Be aware of the weather conditions as well as your dog’s coping abilities – you can make it a habit to walk twice a day for shorter lengths of time instead of one long walk after dinner. And you can still play ball in the backyard, just be extra cautious of ice and other hazards.

Call New Approach Canine at (519) 208-5559 to book your daycare spot or to register for training courses today. See you soon!

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