Enjoying fun activities with your dog not only strengthens your bond of togetherness but also is a great way to add physical and mental stimulation to your pup’s life, which promotes overall good health, of course. Baxter, Sophie, and I love to go on sniffari (or decompression) walks in the different parks in our area. I put them on long lines and allow them to direct me where to go. They are allowed to sniff whatever they want (as long as it is safe) and for as long as they want. Whether you have a new puppy or old faithful by your side there are plenty of ways to express yourself and have FUN with your dog!
Have an Instagram-worthy photoshoot. Sophie and Baxter have been to many of the historical sites here in Hampton Roads and I love to take pictures of them enjoying the sights and sounds in Hampton Roads. Pose your pooch at the local spot in your town with a little character, and you’re bound to get all the Instagram likes. Here is a picture of my pups at the Yorktown Battlefield that I absolutely love.
Go on a walking tour of your city. Play tourist in your own town! We have recently discovered Fort Monroe as an amazing place to explore. Lots of great sniffing opportunities and not very crowded. If you just want to spend some time alone exploring and learning about the history of the fort, I highly recommend this area for a walking tour. There is even a dog friendly coffee place, Firehouse Coffee 1881, where you can grab lunch or just a drink during your adventure. They have water bowls out for the pups and the staff is wonderful. Grab your matching gear and plan your route around your city’s most pet-friendly spots for treats and attention.
Enjoy a stay at a pet-friendly Bed-n-Breakfast. Dogs are welcomed guests at some of the most exciting places across the world. My pups and I just came back from a trip to Destin, Florida where we stayed for a week in a pet friendly AirBNB. It was great to get out of the cold winter weather and enjoy some outdoor time exploring the area. Sophie is not a big fan of car rides, so I have to ensure she has all the items she needs to be comfortable and planned lots of stops along the way. This was she wasn’t overwhelmed by the car time. So if your pup travels well, plan a mini vacay for the two of you. Splurge on luxury amenities like pet-pampering packages for the ultimate FUN!
Learn a fun new sport or mini-sport. Maybe learning an entire agility course isn’t on your list of goals, but how about introducing your dog to a single tunnel or a few simple jumps? How about a flirt pole (a dog-version of a cat’s toy-on-a-stick)? Baxter isn’t much of a sports enthusiast, but Sophie loves to hunt for critter in the backyard. Last year we tried Barn Hunt. We took a few classes and she seemed to really enjoy it. However, she had more fun sniffing the hay and searching for wild critters than searching for the rats, so competition is not a good fit for her. But she still had a blast trying it out. And I loved watching her explore and hunt to her hearts content.