It’s so hot it feels like we’re melting every time we go outside! We humans can escape the blistering temperatures by taking a dip in our apartment pool, but your dog has a hard time keeping his cool in a fur coat! When it’s too hot to take a walk with Fido, keep him happy and get some exercise in your Charleston apartment. Our guide to indoor doggie fun will make your pup look forward to days when it’s too hot for a walk.
Play Inside Games
Get creative! There are several games you can play with your dog inside your apartment. Try playing Hidden Treasure by hiding some of Fido’s favorite goodies under pillows, in between sofa cushions, or folded into a favorite blanket and tell Fluffy to “find it”. Dogs also enjoy a game of Hide and Seek – sneak away and hide from your dog and call him to make him find you. Have his favorite treat ready when he sniffs you out, and tell him how happy you are when he does.
Indoor days provide the perfect time to improve your pup’s obedience skills. Tell Fido to sit and stay while you go into another room, and then come back to reward him with a treat. You can also try making an indoor agility course! Grab pillows, shoe boxes, perhaps a laundry basket (get creative with your obstacles to provide an extra challenge) and set up an obstacle course in your living room. Show your dog how to move around, over, or under your “obstacles” in a pattern to earn a treat.
When it’s time to take a little break from games and fitness, give Fluffy a food puzzle to keep her busy and keep her mind engaged. Kong toys are tough rubber toys that are empty in middle, allowing you stuff them full of treats and make your dog work to get the goodies out. Stuff your Kong with pumpkin or peanut butter and freeze it to give Fluffy a long lasting treat that is especially welcome on a hot day.
Treat puzzles make your dog learn how to open different compartments in a variety of ways in order to find a treat. Check out some of the best interactive dog toys of the moment at This Dog’s Life. You can design your own food puzzles, too! Get some old worn out tennis balls and a muffin tin and place a treat in each muffin cup. Put a tennis ball in some of the cups so that your dog has to remove the balls to find all the treats. Smart puzzles keep Fido occupied while improving his problem solving skills.
Ice Cream for Pups
Everyone loves ice cream in the summer, including Fluffy. Try some flavors just for her! Human ice cream contains ingredients that maybe harmful to our pets, but you can make doggie ice cream in just ten minutes right in your Charleston apartment!
Create convenient serving sizes for your dog by freezing your ice cream in an ice tray. Try all four fun flavors!
The following recipes are tasty enough for humans and make 12 servings; adjust the quantities below to suit your personal tastes.
Pumpkin Peanut Butter
• 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
• 2 tbsp peanut butter (no sugar added)
• 2 tbsp honey
• 1 32-ounce container of plain yogurt
1. Use a large mixing bowl; add pumpkin puree, peanut butter and honey. Whisk ingredients until smoothly textured. Melt the peanut butter first to keep it from being too sticky!
2. Fold in yogurt.
3. Place in freezer to chill for two hours.
• Plain yogurt
• Pureed sweet potato
• Peanut butter
1. Place ingredients in a food processor or whisk all ingredients together.
2. Chill in the freezer until for two hours or until ready to serve.
Some dogs may have difficulty digesting yogurt. Banana blueberry ice cream includes only two ingredients for sensitive tummies.
• 2 bananas
• 1/2 cup blueberries
1. Peel, slice and freeze the bananas.
2. Once the bananas are frozen, process with the blueberries in blender or food processor until the mixture is creamy like ice cream.
3. Serve immediately as a yummy soft serve, or chill in the freezer to allow the ice cream to harden.
Recipes originally appeared in the AMLI blog.