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Tips to Tire Out Your Crazy Puppy

Posted by twincitiespets on May 19, 2014 at 11:30 AM

High energy breeds (border collies, retrievers, setters, huskies, all puppies) can be wonderful pets, but the amount of exercise it takes to wear them out can be too much for a busy family to handle. Outdoor exercise is ideal for tiring your dog out, but sometimes it isn't possible to find the time for a trip to the dog park or for taking two long walks a day. Even if you do get your dog outside for several walks it may not be enough to calm him. Here are five ideas to wear out your hyper dog.

Food Games For Hyper or Anxious Dogs

Food games are great mental exercise for your dog and because food is involved your dog will be excited to play. One way is to hide treats or kibble around the house and encourage your dog to find the food. Hide and seek with food will exercise your pup's mind as well as her body.

Interactive food toys are another great food-oriented way to engage your dog. There are many different types of food toys on the market. My lab loves the Kong Wobbler and the Busy Buddy Tug-a-Jug. Other toys that we haven’t tried but that look interesting are the Northmate Green Modern Interactive Dog Feeder and the Ethical Pet Seek-A-Treat Shuffle Bone Dog Puzzle.

Marty playing with his Tug-a-Jug.

Set Up an Obstacle Course to Burn Off Your Dog's Excess Energy

Make an obstacle course in your yard or even in your living room. You can construct a simple jumping or weaving obstacle course from PVC pipe. You can also use materials you have around the house to construct obstacles for free. Try making a tunnel out of couch cushions or borrow the kid's hula hoop for Fido to jump through. Obstacles will tire your dog out mentally and physically and can help build your bond as you teach your dog to navigate the obstacles. Running your dog through an obstacle course has the added benefit of increasing your pet's agility, health and intelligence as well.

Teach Your Dog a New Trick

Training is a great way to tire out your dog. It also helps to build your dog's confidence as well as your bond with her. Your pup will learn to look to you for direction. Start with basic obedience commands such as sit, down, and stay. If your dog already knows basic obedience commands, how about trying out a new trick? Check out this website for cool dog tricks or the book 101 Dog Tricks for some fun tricks to try out.

Get Your Puppy a New Toy

There is something exciting about new toys, for both humans and dogs. A new toy or bone can keep a pup entertained for the entire afternoon. There is such a huge variety of dog toys available you will definitely be able to find something to fit your dogs tastes - whether he likes stuffed squeaky toys, chew toys, balls, or tug toys. Some neat new toys I would love to buy for my pups are the Kygen Hide-a-Squirrel Toy and the West Paw Zogoflex Hurley Toy.

Koda loves a new squeak toy.

Schedule a Play Date With Another Dog

One of the best ways to wear out your dog is to set up a doggie play date. Invite a friend with a dog over for the afternoon and the dogs will entertain each other while you and your friend catch up. Make sure the dogs are both friendly and have compatible play styles. Pairing a bully breed with a Chihuahua probably won't work out very well, although sometimes it is okay. It really depends on the dogs involved.

If your friends aren't dog people try finding a friend at the local dog park. This way you will already know the dogs get along well by observing their play at the park. If neither of these is an option try out this website that helps you find dog play groups in the Minneapolis and St. Paul area. Dog Play Date is a neat site where puppy parents can find other parents looking for a fun time for their dog.


Next time your dog is driving you nuts try one or more of these ideas. It will help calm your dog and make her more manageable so you both can enjoy the time you spend together. What do you do to calm your hyper dog?

Does your pup need more than a training session to wear him out? Contact us at Twin Cities Pets to set up some walks or a trip to the dog park. 


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