Training Style | Blog | About | Reviews | Online Shop | FAQ | Group Classes | Free Quote

5 Ways To Entertain Your Dog In An Apartment


Apartment living can have your dog bouncing off the walls from time to time. Rainy days may be keeping you from your trips to the dog park or maybe your work schedule has you missing your daily dog walks. Having simple ways to keep your dog entertained inside will curb any of those nasty Boredom Behaviors and give you peace of mind that your dog isn't getting a case of cabin fever. Here are our 5 favorite ways to entertain a dog in an apartment.

    Wow your dog today, with these engaging activities!

  • Hide and Seek: This classic kid's game is also the a great game to play with your dog. All your dog needs to know how to do is "Stay" while you find a place to hide and wait with a treat. When you are hidden go ahead and call their name. Make sure to start small with short distances and easy hiding places. As your dog's skill level improves, see how far away you can hide and get more clever with your hiding spaces. Be careful not to give into your dog if they can't hold their excitement well enough to stay while you hide. Have your dog go back to their original spot and pick a closer hiding spot.
  • Interactive Toys and Feeders: You may not always have time or ability to be hands on with your dog but that doesn't mean you can't still keep them entertained. There are so many interactive toys that can keep them busy opening drawers, turning knobs, and sniffing around to find yummy treats. Add an interactive feeder to your dog's meal time and they will have a daily source of fun and entertainment.
  • Egg Hunt: It's doesn't have to be easter for your dog to enjoy an egg hunt. Pack some plastic eggs with yummy treats to hide around your apartment and your dog will have be sniffing around all day looking for them all.
  • Play the Shell game: Get three plastic cups or other small containers. Have your dog sit and stay while you place a treat under one of the cups, mix around the cups and see if your dog can locate the hidden treat.
  • Dog Training: Dog training is not only a great way to manage bad behaviors, it is also super fun and entertaining for your dog.
  • Need more help keeping your dog happy with apartment living? Hire a My Curious Canine Dog Walker or set up a FREE Meet and Greet with one of our dog trainers to discuss how a personalized dog training routine can help keep your dog calm and happy.

Keep Reading The Knoxville Dog Training Blog

Leash Reactive Dogs

Take a quick jog or walk through any suburban neighborhood around dusk and you’ll likely see this common sight: Leash reactive dogs lunging at each other from opposite sides of the street, pulling and embarrassing the human walking with them.

What is Leash Reactivity?

Leash reactivity in dogs can manifest itself in many ways: Think lunging, jumping, snarling, rearing up like a stallion, growling, barking and overexcitement when walking on a leash. Simply put, a leash-reactive dog is one that is especially sensitive and reactive while on a leash. Leash reactive dogs aren’t bad dogs – many are well-behaved off-leash and even play well with other dogs at dog parks and at home.

[img src="/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/leash-reactive.jpg"]

Here are 3 things you need to know about leash reactivity in dogs and what you can do to manage your dog’s behavior when walking on a leash.

Natural Interactions

When off-leash and in their own natural environment, dogs usually greet from the side and then sniff each other’s genitals. They don’t approach head-on and make hard eye contact unless a fight is about to start. Additionally, dogs generally only greet each other for a few seconds. Dogs who meet on a leash usually meet head first, and when neighbors stop and chat, tensions can rise. Dog owners need to be aware of how dogs behave on their own and need to create as natural interactions as possible, even during leashed walks.

Use Your Manners

Dog owners also don’t often recognize rude behavior from other dogs. If one leashed dog greets another leashed dog during a walk by running up and jumping on him, this isn’t cute or playful, it’s downright rude in dog society and could be the result of a poorly socialized dog.

[img src="/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/pulling-leash.jpg"]

Positive Reinforcement

Leash reactivity can be corrected with positive reinforcement dog training. You can start curbing this unwanted behavior by teaching your dog to focus on you, not other dogs, during walks. You can start working on this lesson by starting leashed walks in areas without distractions, like in your living room or fenced yard.

For more information about curbing leash reactivity with positive reinforcement dog training, read about My Curious Canine's training style or schedule a free meet and greet or ask about our mastering the walk mini-course.

Keep Reading The Knoxville Dog Training Blog

Ten Signs That Your Dog Is Bored

If most dogs had their way, life would be one long visit to the dog park. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that. Most human dog owners have to work 8 or more hours a day, leaving your dog alone and up to his own devices. In many cases, dogs left alone get bored and that can lead to trouble. Here are 10 signs that your dog might be bored.

Chewing

It doesn’t matter how many toys Fido has at his disposal. A bored dog might seek out other things to satisfy his need to chew if he’s feeling bored. This can be detrimental to your shoe collections, furniture and even the walls of your home.

Digging

A bored dog can try to create her own fun by engaging in digging behavior, which can be destructive to your home and lawn.

Over excitement

Your dog is always happy to see you, but if his greeting is over the top, this could mean he’s bored at home when you’re not around.

Excessive licking

If your dog is constantly licking himself or you, you might think he’s just being clean or affectionate. But in some cases, excessive licking can indicate boredom.

Escaping and running away.

If your dog makes a run for it every chance he gets, chances are this means he’s bored with his surroundings.

Pacing

Humans might pace when their feeling fidgety and the same goes for dogs. A dog who is bored with extra energy to burn might pace the halls, fence or room.

Panting without physical exertion

There are a number of reasons why your dog may pant. Heat, physical exertion, pain or even just breed disposition. If you’ve been able to rule these out but still find your dog panting, boredom or anxiety might be to blame.

Scratching without physical explanation

Scratching, biting or chewing can be a sign of boredom in dogs. If you find your pooch engaging in these behaviors after ruling out allergies, boredom might be the culprit.

Pulling the stuffing from toys

Destructive play can be fun for your dog. If you come home to find a trail of fluff leading down the hall, you might have a dog who is bored when you’re away.

Barking

Many things might inspire your dog to bark. The mailman. A bird in a tree outside the window. The wind. But if your dog’s barking becomes a nuisance to you or your neighbors, chances are he is bored and looking for ways to entertain himself.

How to combat doggie boredom

Keep your dog healthy and engaged and avoid boredom-related behaviors by letting your dog channel his energy into healthier outlets. Ways to fight doggie boredom can include the following.

  • Positive reinforcement training
  • Making good use of daily interactions
  • Using the puzzle toys to add mental stimulation, which can be purchased through MyCuriousCanine
  • Playing obedience games
  • Engaging sports such as agility, barn hunt etc.
  •  

A well-trained and mentally stimulated dog is a joy to have in your home. Every minute of each day can’t always be exciting for you or your dog, but making a plan to keep boredom at bay when your dog is home alone can help you have a more meaningful relationship with your dog. For more information about combating your dog’s boredom or stop destructive dog behavior, learn more about our dog training style or book an appointment today.

Keep Reading The Knoxville Dog Training Blog

What Every Dog Lover Needs to Know

Be Positive, Be Successful

Remember how happy you were as a child when you earned that bicycle by doing chores around the house? You might not realize it, but this was an example of positive reinforcement training and it works with both humans and dogs.

In fact, a dog training style that relies heavily on positive reinforcement and real-world situations is known to be one of the most effective ways to train your dog and build your relationship. Here’s how My Curious Canine’s positive reinforcement dog training compares to some other popular methods of dog training.

Learning Good Behavior In The Home

Board and train facilities often promise to fix problem behavior and curb your dog’s bad habits. But one of the problems with these facilities is that the dog is removed from their home and familiar environment and where the behavior occurs. If you send your dog to a board and train facility because he digs in your flower beds, taking him to a facility without those flower beds for training likely won’t change his behavior. My Curious Canine works with dogs and their families in familiar environments so the dog training is real-world applicable.

Learning In Real-World Scenarios

Puppy classes at pet stores often rely on a “trick-for-treat” model of dog training. While this mimics positive reinforcement, the dog training sometimes fails when a treat isn’t available. My Curious Canine teaches dogs and their people how to behave in real-life situations. For example, when a dog learns to sit for a treat, it might be hard for the dog to correlate that command with situations in his daily life. My Curious Canine can work with your dog so that he learns to sit when the door opens so he doesn’t have to be held back every time someone enters or exits the home. My Curious Canine is personalized dog training that works with you and your family – with both two and four legs – to make sure your dog’s behavior works with your lifestyle.

Be A Leader, Not A Dominator

Alpha dog training methods rely on negative reinforcement, like prong collars and shock collars. These dog training methods instill fear and teach the dog that their human is a “pack leader” who calls the shots. In many cases, these methods rely on a single interpretation of dog psychology and might involve punishments that mimic fighting and forcefully teach submission. For example, to correct a dog jumping up in excitement, the trainer might force a knee to their chest. A positive reinforcement dog trainer like My Curious Canine, on the other hand, would aim to replace the behavior with a controlled technique through a command like "sit" or "settle.”

Regardless of dog training method you chose, it’s important to know that each interaction you have with your dog is an opportunity to learn. My Curious Canine’s goal is to make dog training easy by breaking it down into 30-second intervals with each interaction rather than 30-minute sessions. Breaking dog training down per interaction keeps your dog stimulated and learning.

My Curious Canine's positive reinforcement training techniques teach you how to build a relationship with your dog built on respect and proper communication. For more information, learn more about my dog training style or contact us to book an appointment.

Keep Reading The Knoxville Dog Training Blog