As a dog owner, it’s always fun to watch the seasons change. Each shift in the weather opens up new activities for your pup. Spring means more time at the dog park, and summer gives them time to swim.
When your pooch finishes jumping through the sprinkler and barreling through fallen leaves, they’ll grow out their winter coat. You may think it’s time for your pup to hibernate, similar to a bear, but think again.
Discover 10 ways to have fun with your dog in the winter. Even if the snow is falling, you and your furry friend can find something exciting to do.
1. Hike in the Snow
Whether you’ve woken up to your first flurry of snowflakes or you’ve shoveled the driveway ten times, nothing is stopping your pup from going on a hike. Wrap them up in a cozy jacket if you think they’ll get cold, and strap on a pair of booties.
The change of scenery will excite your pup, but keep an eye out for snowballs stuck to their paws. You’ll have to remove them if they form large clumps to prevent frozen feet.
2. Bake Dog Treats
Is winter your excuse to eat more cookies and bake casseroles every night? Let your pup join in the fun when you bake homemade dog treats with simple ingredients, such as cookies made with peanut butter, flour, eggs, and water. You can easily make dog cookies or cakes. Make sure they cool completely before letting your pooch gobble them up.
3. Visit an Indoor Park
Depending on the size of your city, you might find a few indoor dog parks to explore. Research your area and visit a few locations to see if your pup enjoys them.
4. Experiment With Skijoring
Winter doesn’t mean your pooch has to stay inside. Try experimenting with skijoring, a sport where your pup pulls you on skis in a mix of skiing and dog sledding. Owners of small dogs can ski and let their pups run alongside them.
5. Create Puppy Art
When you have nothing to do on winter afternoons, pull out some paint. Invest in a puppy paint kit and use your dog’s paws to create art you can hang in your home. If you have lots of paper, create unique holiday cards.
6. Practice Interactive Yoga
Yoga is a calming, centering activity you can practice with your dog when you know the right moves. This experience allows you to bond with your pup more than a walk. It also calms dogs that are typically hyperactive.
7. Play With Food Options
As you spend more time with your pup during the winter, play with their diet to achieve the ideal amount of protein. The key is to look for a protein amino acid balance, which many standard kibble brands lack.
8. Cuddle During Movie Night
Don’t forget to invite your furry friend over to the couch when you enjoy a movie night. Cuddle with them under a blanket and pet them while you relax to remind them how special they are.
9. Hang Out at Pet Stores
It’s never a bad time to go to the pet store, so head out and let your dog sniff around the aisles. Let them pick out a new toy or bone to bring home as a special treat. Puzzle toys are a great option to keep your pup busy when the weather outside is frightful.
10. Toss a Tennis Ball
Dogs obsessed with fetch will love chasing a tennis ball in or outside. Toss it around in the snow or roll it across your kitchen floor for fun your dog will love.
Get Creative This Year and Have Fun With Your Dog
It’s easy to feel stuck inside during the frigid winter months. With some of the winter dog fun activities above, however, you and your dog can continue to have a good time together. No matter what you pick, your pup will adore the extra time and attention.
Emily Folk is a pet blogger and avid dog lover. You can read more of her work on her blog, Conservation Folks.