Anonymous asked in PetsDogs · 1 month ago

Ideas to entertain my dog?

Hi, I have a sixteen yr old German Shephard with Degradative Myopathy (a mobility problem for those who don't know) so my vet had recommended short 5 minute walks a day. By the end of the day she gets more tired and settles but in the morning and afternoon she tends to get very bored so looking for suggestions for things I can give her to do.

I tend to sit her outside on the lawn in the day time and she has the option to wonder around if she wants to. But she has a fan group of people who come and see her and we do “play dates” with another elderly dog (more sitting dates) but it's some company for her. I also bought her a Kong to play with because when it's very wet, cold of hot in the day I don't put her outside. Mentally she's very intelligent so gets bored easily. I obviously play games with her as well.

I bought a few puzzle toys, but once she's figured them out that's it. They take her like 3 minutes to do. So I also thinking of some DIY puzzle toys. I hide food in toilet rolls, bottles and blankets and she enjoys that. Any other recommendations for things to keep her entertainment while I'm busy?


For anyone wondering, she's on medication for any pain she might be in.

Update 2:

Things she can play with whilst lying in her bed so no physical games, just mental ones.

Update 3:

Great ideas so far. I put the TV near her, plus radios and the laptop with stuff on - takes no notice.

She'll rip up other things but teddies are a strict NO NO...she just mothers them instead. Never has she ever torn up one of her precious "babies" lol

Update 4:

Thanks Anon and sorry to hear about your dog. I also work from home so luckily I can be there for her 24/7. She needs assistance getting up all the time and she needs you to support her first thing in the morning but tends to loosen up as the day goes on. It was 5 minute walks the vet recommended not 5 walks a day. 

4 Answers

  • 1 month ago

    I like your idea & encourage you to do this.  You are teaching her to search, use that nose.  Next would be tracking a scent, leave a short trail by dropping itty bitty pieces of something she likes.  Bacon is perfect.  Little tiny tiny pieces, a crumb.  Her nose can smell it.  drop a crumb about 2, 3, 4 feet apart.  After you have set a short trail, see how she does & how fast she picks up the idea of tracking a scent.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    All my dog - same condition, younger - wants to do is be with me.  Sometimes I sit on the floor and roll a tennis ball to her.  She swipes at it, picks it up, then I roll it again.  I bought educational toys which you grew very impatient with.  She discovered that it's just easier to get the treats by slamming the toy on the floor a few times.

    Wherever I am, that's where she is.  Every now and then I'll hide a treat in her blankets, but she stands and paws which puts her weight on 3 legs, not a good idea.

    We also sit outside together a lot - I work from home so it's possible.

    Five walks a day seems like a lot of walks. 

  • 1 month ago

    They make these special blankets for dogs that have different textures and games, places to hide treats and things. I don't know if you have tried those for her, but they are supposed to be really good for all dogs; old, anxious, bore easily, fat, LOL. I'll put it in the sources. They come in all different sizes and you can change up what you put in there and everything. Might be good for her.

    You can also see if she wouldn't revert back to her puppy days and see if she wouldn't like a nice classic stuffy to tear apart. Did she ever have a favorite? My dog loves stuffed ducks and we're already on #3! My mom's dog is also getting up there in years, so the vet suggested to buy her old puppy favorites and she's been loving it. Soft toys, kongs, just easy, little things she can do, like when she was 3 months old.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Have you tried turning the TV on and seeing if anything seems to entertain her? I don't really know what a dog would want to watch, but it's really all I can think of in terms of mental activities that a dog could do.

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