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These are fun things you can do with your pets indoors or outdoors. This is great exercise for them and lots of fun for all of you. 

10 brain games to play with your dog

Everyone loves a good game of fetch with their dog. It's perfect for getting exercise and having fun. But the downside to the game is that there is no thinking involved — just a lot of running back and forth. So many games with dogs, from fetch to tug-of-war, don't require them to do a whole lot of thinking. On the other hand, interactive brain games not only tire out your energetic dog, but they also defeat boredom, increase your dog's confidence, and strengthen the bond between the two of you as you work together as a team. So many great activities that you can do with your dog are simply dog-versions of favorite kids' games, all of which exercise the brain as much as the body. Here are 11 ideas to get you started.

Treasure Hunt

Getting your dog to use his nose to find hidden treasure is a great way to stimulate his brain and teach him to use all his senses. Starting out, you'll want to set your dog up for success so he understands the game and doesn't get too discouraged. Begin with something simple. Put your dog in a sit-stay, and hide a treat or favorite toy somewhere obvious, even letting him watch you hide it. Then give him the release cue to go find the toy. Reward your dog big-time for his success in finding the hidden treasure.

Once your dog understands the game, ramp up the difficulty. Hide the treat or toy in another room, or some place where other scents mask the treat or toy, like the bottom of the laundry bin or under the food dish. You can also make the game really hard by using cardboard boxes. Set up 10-20 cardboard boxes of different sizes and, without your dog seeing, place the reward in only one box. Let your dog investigate all of them and provide the reward or a jackpot treat when he selects the correct box. There are so many variations on this game that it will have the two of you playing different versions for years to come.


Boost the excitement and reward level of the popular treasure hunt game by being the treasure your dog is tasked to find. You'll need to play this with at least two people. One person gives the dog the sit-stay cue and distracts him while the other person hides, then gives the release cue for the dog to start looking. This game works wonderfully both indoors and outdoors, and is a fun way to spend a rainy afternoon with your dog.

Ring stackers

Just as toys can teach toddlers eye-hand coordination, they can teach dogs eye-paw (or eye-mouth) coordination. Walking down the aisles of any toy store will set your imagination alight with things you can teach your dog. But one of my favorites to start with are ring stackers. This is a tough game that takes awhile to learn, so you and your dog will be hard at work together for hours, since it takes days or even weeks to perfect the game. It's important to find wooden rings with natural dyes rather than plastic, since your dog will be biting down on these rings quite a bit. The size you'll want to buy depends on the size of your dog and his dexterity with his mouth.

Clicker training is ideal for this, since your dog is feeling, rather than seeing, what he's doing. I started by click-and-treating my dog when he picked up a ring, then click-and-treating him as he moved it closer to the stick. I continued to shape him by click-and-treating as he touched the ring to the stick, then tried to maneuver it onto the top of the stick. After a few sessions, he figured out the goal of the game, and now he loves stacking rings: You can change things up by mounting the stick to a wall so the dog has to fit it onto a horizontal stick rather than dropping it onto a vertical stick. You can also put the rings in a different room, so your dog is running back and forth to collect and stack all the rings before earning the jackpot reward.

Shell Game

If your dog is the betting type, he'll love this game. Even if he isn't, he'll love it because there are treats involved. The shell game is simple, but really challenging. Take two plastic opaque cups and turn them over. With your dog watching, place a treat under a cup. Give your dog the cue to come turn over the cup and get the treat. Do this eight or 10 times, letting your dog really understand the game. Then alternate which cup you place the treat under. When your dog selects the correct cup, let him have the treat. If he doesn't select the correct cup (and that will happen, even when he sees you placing the treat under the cup), show him the treat under the correct cup but don't let him have it. Keep him watching which cup you place the treat under so he can guess the right cup. It sounds easy to us, but for many dogs, this requires some serious thinking.

If your dog masters this, it's time to challenge him even more. Place a treat under the left cup, then slide the cups to switch places, so that the cup with the treat is now on your right. Release your dog to find the treat. If your dog selects the correct cup, give him the treat. If your dog doesn't select the correct cup, show him the treat but don't let him have it. Keep repeating this and see if your dog can figure out the trick. Some dogs may never quite get how the treat magically switches sides — this is a tough game using visual tracking, and not all dogs make the connection. But if your dog does, bump up the challenge even more by swapping sides randomly. See if he can use his eyes, nose and thinking skills to find the treat after the old switcheroo. Very few dogs will make it to this stage, so don't be discouraged if your dog isn't a whiz at the shell game. Dognition is a great place to learn about your dog's personality and learning style, and it has featured a version of this game for members along with many other brain games that will keep your dog thinking.

New Trick

An activity that boosts your dog's creativity is the "new trick" game. It's a popular game in clicker training because it teaches a dog to think independently, coming up with his own ideas about what behavior earns a reward. The premise is simple: click and treat for a new behavior offered by your dog, and ignore a behavior already offered. A typical game between me and my dog looks like this: I say "new trick" and my dog sits. I click and treat, then say "new trick" again. My dog lies down. Click and treat. I say "new trick" and my dog stands and turns in a circle. Click and treat. I say "new trick" and my dog goes and gets a toy and brings it to me. Click and treat. If when I say "new trick" my dog does something again, such as sits or brings me another toy, I tell him, "You already did that" and don't offer a reward. He then comes up with something new instead and is rewarded. Our rounds of this game can sometimes last 30 or 40 minutes.

When you first try this game with your dog, especially if your dog isn't used to clicker training for shaping behavior, then start simple. The slightest new thing can earn a treat. For example, set a box next to your dog. Click and treat your dog for looking at the box, for touching it with a paw, for touching it with his nose, for stepping on it, for walking around it, for just about any vague interaction with the box. But don't reward the same action twice. Your dog touching the box with his nose earns a reward once, but the second time earns nothing. Once your dog gets the grasp of the game, expand it to other behaviors like sit, down, crawl, spin, sit up, and so on. Pretty soon, your dog will be going through your entire repertoire of tricks and coming up with new ones just to earn that treat for creative thinking.

Hot and Cold

The hot and cold game is also ideal for clicker training since it follows the basics of shaping a new behavior. It's great for brainy dogs who don't get frustrated too easily. And all you have to do is sit on the couch and say "hot" or "cold" and toss treats. How easy is that! Basically all you do is come up with something you want your dog to do. It can be anything — maybe you notice your keys on the floor and you want your dog to go pick them up and bring them to you. Simply kick back with your bag of treats, and any time the dog makes a move that edges them closer to the keys, say "hot" with enthusiasm and toss a treat to the dog where they are. If your dog moves away from the chosen goal, quietly say "cold." If they move back toward the chosen goal, excitedly say "hot!" and toss a treat. You can get your dog to go touch the doorknob on the other side of the room, grab a blanket from the couch, or pretty much any behavior you can think of. The idea of shaping an action in this way is covered in Karen Pryor's book, "Don't Shoot The Dog," a fascinating read about training techniques.

52-Toy Pickup

Cleaning up has never been so fun! To get your dog understanding the game, you'll want to start with "drop it." Getting your dog to drop a toy on command is a key component to getting him to the next step of dropping it in a particular location. After you have a solid drop-it, start shaping your dog to dropping toys in a basket or box. Click and treat stages of the behavior a little at a time, such as your dog heading toward the basket with the toy, or dropping the toy near the basket. Anything that leads closer to the behavior of dropping the toy in the basket. Eventually, your dog will understand that a command like "put it away" means to grab a toy and take it to the basket, drop it in, and leave it there.

After this part is mastered, build up to the number of toys your dog picks up. Start with rewarding your dog each time he puts a toy away. Then reward him only after he puts away two toys, then only after three toys and so on. Eventually, the reward will only come when every toy is put away, and you'll have a dog running around the room finding every toy as quickly as he can in order to win that wonderful jackpot reward of a handful of treats.

Just remember, it takes time to build up to this, and the journey is all part of the game, so have patience. It took me quite a few clicker sessions with my dog before he finally got the "put it away" game down, but watching him figure things out was all part of the fun. Note in the video below that I don't say much of anything while my dog is figuring out what to do. I let him continue to try, continue to work out for himself the puzzle of what's being asked, and reward him when he gets it right (or nearly right).

The Name Game

So your dog can put toys away, but can he put toys away by name? A great game to play with your dog is teaching him the name of specific toys, and then sending him to go get that particular toy. There are dogs famous for their vocabulary, so even the most stubborn of dogs can learn the names of at least a couple of toys. It just takes a lot (a lot!) of repetition to hammer home the name. One way to get started is to hold a toy, say its name, let your dog grab it, then reward your dog for grabbing the toy. Let's say it's a rubber tug toy named Tug. Hold Tug in one hand, say "Tug," let your dog grab Tug, and give a reward. Repeat this 20 or 30 times. Then set Tug next to a very different toy of equal value, like a rope toy named Rope. Say "Tug" to your dog and if your dog selects Tug, give a reward. If your dog doesn't select Tug but selects Rope instead, say nothing but place Rope back next to Tug. Say "Tug" again and let your dog choose. Once your dog is consistently selecting Tug, place it next to another different toy, and repeat the steps until your dog is always choosing Tug over other toys of equal value.

Once your dog is successful with one toy's name, start the whole process over with a different toy, like Rope. Hold Rope, say "Rope," let your dog grab Rope, and give a reward, repeating this 20 or 30 times. Set Rope next to a different toy (but not the first toy, Tug), say "Rope," and only reward your dog when they select Rope. Say nothing if he selects the other toy, but return it next to Rope and try again. Keep repeating until you have the same consistent success that your dog had with Tug.

Once you've established Rope and Tug and your dog knows the names of these two toys, it's time for a test. Place Rope and Tug next to each other, and ask for Tug. Reward only if your dog chooses Tug. Keep trying until your dog is successful a few times, then switch to asking for Rope. When your dog has this down, consistently selecting the toy you ask for, you're ready to take the test farther by adding in a few more unnamed toys. See if your dog can pick out Tug or Rope from the small pile. If you have success with two toys, then keep the process going for more toys. Who knows how many your dog will learn!

Jumping rope

Eye and body coordination meet with this game. Your dog has to concentrate on the pace of the rope, on targeting a certain spot on the ground, and of course, on jumping.

Start by teaching your dog to target an object on the ground. Note that in the video, the object used is a stick that shows the dog not only where to jump but also how much space there is to work with on either side to stay within the boundaries of the rope. Once targeting is down, teach your dog to jump on that spot on a cue. After that is mastered, add in the rope, cueing your dog each time he needs to jump as the rope comes down. It will take a lot of practice, but it will also burn a ton of extra brain and body energy.

Red Light Green Light

This is an ideal game for dogs who tend to get wound up during play and can become overly enthusiastic. The game improves a dog's impulse control, and reminds him to pay attention to you no matter how much fun he is having. This will ultimately make excursions to the dog park or other off-leash areas much more safe and enjoyable, but it is a game that can be played any time, anywhere.



How NOT to Hold a Leash, Unless You Want to Land in the ER

In the picture above, Sanchez is helping me demonstrate how to never hold a leash.  The most important rule for holding a leash for a dog of any size is ALWAYS make sure you can do a quick release. This rule applies whether your dog is wearing a collar or a halter, and weighs 9 or 90 pounds.

In the Vet Street video above, trainer Mikkel Becker demonstrates how to have a strong grip on your leash, while also being able to safely do a quick release. It should be a mandatory watch before adopting any dog.

Read more and see the demonstration: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/how-not-to-hold-a-leash-unless-you-want-to-land-in-the-er.html#ixzz386Yi8pZ0


Go Camping with your pet. Make sure you have a long lead to put them on when you can't watch them for brief periods of time, their leash's, food, bowels for food, doggy waste bags and treats. For the parents of the pets here are 13 Clever Camping Hacks to Make the Outdoors More Fun.

Camping is a fun way to step out of social media and get back in touch with the Great Outdoors. Unfortunately, some equate camping with incredibly heavy packs, hoards of bloodthirsty mosquitos, and dirt. While dirt is an essential part of camping, unrelenting mosquitos and heavy packs don’t have to be.

1. Sage bundles are great for keeping nagging mosquitos at bay. Make a bundle and set it over hot coals. The smoke is a deterrent to mosquitos and other annoying pests.

2. Emergency toilet paper is always a good thing to pack. A good idea is to stick a back-up wad in an Altoids container, along with some cotton balls and some extra matches — just in case.

3. Duct tape is extremely useful stuff when camping, but you never really need an entire roll. Instead, wrap duct tape around a water bottle or knife sheath. It shouldn’t stick to itself and you’ll know exactly where to find it when the time comes.

4. Cabbage leaves are great for wrapping meat. Stick your meat straight onto the coals and cook without worrying that your meal might crisp into charcoal. You can bring your own leaves or find food-safe wild alternatives. In the northeast, skunk cabbage or burdock leaves are great options.

5. Whistles are important to have, in case of an emergency. Did you know you can make one out of an acorn cap? Learn more here. http://www.sciencetoymaker.org/acorn/assembl.html

6. Drinking straws can function as single serve spice and ointment containers. Cut plastic straws into 1/2 inch pieces, seal one end closed with a lighter, and fill with anti-biotic ointment, toothpaste, salt, pepper, paprika, you name it! Just seal the remaining end with a lighter and you’re ready to trek!

7. Wax-dipped cotton balls are great emergency fire starters. Make them at home with candle drippings and toss them in your Altoids case until you need them.
Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/13-clever-camping-hacks-to-make-the-outdoors-more-fun.html#ixzz35Oi7eoqh


8 Backyard Ideas to Delight Your Dog

A dog or dogs happily romping in the backyard is a classic dog-owner dream. Achieving this, though, takes more thought than just sending your dog out in the yard and hoping for the best. Take the time to make sure your yard provides your dog with the amenities he or she needs and loves. Fortunately, pet-friendly yard amenities are also great for people as well.


Valley Dog Sports is pleased to offer introductory workshops and sanctioned trials in the exciting new sport of BARN HUNTING!  We are members of the Barn Hunt Association and operate under their rules and requirements. Karla is a licensed BH judge and available to help at your event too.

Check out the calendar for our next scheduled event and the documents section to download premiums and entry forms.  

For more information:  https://valleydogsports.shutterfly.com/

K-9 Calenders Presents Dog Parks In The USA...


5 Running Games To Play With Your Dog 

         5 Running Games To Play With Your Dog 

By Karen B. London, PhD, The Bark

Just as the iconic image of the Great Dad shows him playing catch with his kids, the iconic image of the Great Dog Guardian would show a person running around with a dog. A few minutes- or even a few steps- are all you need, so don’t resist these easy ways to add joy to your dog’s day.

1. Chase. This game is simple: You run and your dog chases you. Clap or make a “smooch” sound to get your dog’s attention, and then run away from him. When he’s within a few feet of you, turn and reinforce him with a treat, a toy or the start of another chase. Stopping before he reaches you prevents the chase game from turning into the “nip the human on the back of the leg” game. (Don’t play the “chase the dog” game- it will teach him to run away when you approach and ruin his recall.)

2. On Your Mark, Get Set, Go. Combine a little trick work and self-control practice with running. Teach your dog to lie down when you say “On your mark,” do a play bow to the cue “Get set” and start running when you say “Go.” Tres cute.

3. Fartlek. Runners worldwide use fartlek training to increase their speed. The word, which means “speed play” in Swedish, refers to the practice of interspersing short bursts of speed within a training run. To play with your dog fartlek style, surge ahead and run few paces, past several houses or even down the block. Chances are your dog will happily follow your lead. (And yes, even serious runners think it’s a funny word.)

4. Hard to Get. This short keep-away game can jump-start a play session. Squeak, bounce or wave a toy around to get your dog’s attention as you run away from him. Just make sure you don’t tease him by playing keep-away too long. The excitement created by a moment of playing hard to get can start another game, but going on too long without giving your dog access to the toy can result in frustration or anger rather than playfulness.

5. Crazy Owner. People who are unpredictable in their movements are fascinating to dogs. With that in mind, use the “crazy owner” game to get and keep your dog’s attention. Hold a bunch of yummy treats to lure your dog to your side and then start moving away from him. Change speed and direction often so he never knows what you are going to do next. For example, run five steps, turn and jog slowly for 10, then execute a quick reverse and sprint in the opposite direction. Offer him praise and treats every time he’s right by your side, and keep moving like a crazy person to maintain his interest.

Many people love to play with their dogs. Still more want to play with their dogs but think their dogs aren’t playful, or that they only like to play with other dogs. Certainly, some dogs are more naturally playful or more toy-motivated than others. Yet, I’ve found that time and again, the majority of dogs who are described as “not playful” by the people who know them best actually do love to play, as long as the games are based on running and chasing. Give them a try!



             Kitty Play Dates

                                      Cats my be territorial, but they can learn to be best buddies, too. (©iStockphoto.com/Alberto Perez Veiga)                               

By Darcy Lockman

When best friends Carolyn Miller and Jennifer Cohen adopted kittens around the same time, they decided it would be fun for their cats to become playmates. The reality of the situation was that one cat spent an hour terrorizing the other cat, causing worry about the cat's safety. They agreed that would be the first and last playdate.

Tip No. 1: Start young.
"Kittens aged 7 to 12 weeks are the most suitable since this is the critical time to shape positive behavior," says Brunt. "Many veterinarians recommend kitten socialization classes, like Kitten Kindergarten, where kittens are allowed to interact with each other." During these classes, kittens are also introduced to handling, grooming and transport. Food rewards are given to reinforce positive actions and reactions.

Adult cats can also be socialized -- they simply must be introduced to their new cat friends more slowly (see below).

Tip No. 2: Identify your cat's personality type.
According to the American Association of Feline Practitioners, cats may be loosely classified into four categories: bold and active, easy and affable, withdrawn and timid, and assertive. Your cat may be easier or harder to socialize depending on its personality.

Tip No. 3: Find a neutral territory.
"A neutral territory is a place neither cat has been," explains Brunt. When neither cat has claimed a place as its own, you can expect less territorial and adversarial behaviors. If a neutral territory is not a possibility, Brunt suggests choosing one room in your home. "Any room can serve as a playground, as long as you're there."

Tip No. 4: Make slow introductions.
"Always go slow!" emphasizes Brunt. Relaxed owners should introduce cats gradually -- over a period of days or weeks. Begin with complete separation, which means the cats are occupying different rooms in the same house. Then allow the cats to make visual contact.

Tip No. 5: Know your cat's signals.
Your cat's body language speaks loudly. "A ‘Halloween cat,' standing with its back arched and tail up, is exhibiting an aggressive stance and should not be further aroused, as it may exhibit extreme aggression," says Brunt.

Owners who are familiar with their cat's communication can watch for signs that the animal is uncomfortable or unhappy, and can extricate the pet from the situation. Recognizing signs of contentment and positive energy is important as well. Brunt encourages rewarding an animal with treats for "speaking" appropriate body language.

To read more: http://www.news9.com/story/13142268/cheer-up-your-cat-with-a-kitty-playdate?redirected=true                                                     

Kitty Play Dates


          Dog Scouts. Start Your Own Troop


We are a non-profit organization dedicated to educating people about responsible dog ownership, the important role of the human/canine bond and to challenge people and dogs to learn how to better serve each other. It is the DOG that becomes a Dog Scout, so the individual at the loop end of the leash can be an adult or a child.  We have programs for all ages!.

We Have a Junior Scout Program for Kids This part of DSA is a wonderful program for children to become involved with. It teaches kids responsibility, and some very important life lessons. It helps them build self-esteem, and how to reach success with goal-oriented steps. It’s not always possible for a child to be a fully responsible dog parent.

 If you'd like to know more:



6 Activities to Help You Bond With Your Dog

My dogs and I love to tramp the 150 acres of our Almost Heaven Ranch in northern Idaho. For the dogs it’s more than a physical workout; their noses are constantly twitching as they breathe in the scents of the woods and fields and the resident wildlife. They alert me to the presence of deer, wolves and other creatures long before I, with my puny senses, would ever have seen them.

Hiking with my dogs is one of the greatest joys of my life, and it has more benefits than just exercise and the pleasure of being outdoors. Spending time together is one of the ways we build relationships, whether those bonds are with people or animals. So is communication and working toward a common goal.

 You can strengthen your relationship with your dog in a number of ways, from going on regular walks or hikes to learning and competing in dog sports — even just practicing tricks and obedience commands for a few minutes each day. Here are some of the most fun ways you and your dog can build a bond.

 More Than Training

 Teaching your dog isn’t just a way to get him to do the things you want — it’s a powerful form of communication. Once you know how to teach your dog, there’s no end to what he can learn and do, as long as it doesn’t require opposable thumbs. Here are a couple of great ways to get started.

Puppy kindergarten. It’s never too early to start building a bond with your dog. You can sign your new pup up for class starting at 10 weeks (after he’s had his first set of vaccinations). A good trainer will help you teach your puppy the essential skills — sit, down, come and stay — as well as how to communicate with him throughout his life. With that foundation, you and your dog can go on to learn all kinds of things together.

Canine Good Citizen. Once your dog has a little experience under his collar, you can work toward his ability to be polite in public places. All the things he needs to know to be a civilized member of society are encompassed in the Canine Good Citizen  test. To pass it, dogs must demonstrate that they can perform certain commands, sit nicely while a stranger touches and grooms them, and respond with equanimity to startling sights and sounds, such as an umbrella being opened unexpectedly or an object clattering when dropped. These skills will prepare him for participating in dog sports, not to mention just making him all-around nicer to live with.

 Games and Sports

 There’s nothing wrong with walks, hikes and playtime at home for spending time with your dog; they’re easy, free and can be done whenever your schedule allows. But if you want to stretch yourself as a trainer and bring out your dog’s full abilities, try adding one of these fun activities.

Agility. If your dog can leap a fence in a single bound, crawl on his belly in the space behind the sofa, and fly through the park at light speed, he might be a candidate for this canine version of track-and-field events. Agility dogs — guided through the course by their handler (you) — must negotiate a series of obstacles such as A-frames, tunnels, jumps, teeter-totters and weave poles. You can do it just for fun or compete for titles.


People-Pet Health, Do a Little Doggie Yoga, Doga – VIDEO

Doing yoga with your canine companion, commonly called doga is getting more and more popular.  I’ve actually heard that there are even doga classes local to me.  Wasn’t all that long ago you might have been able to find it in larger metro areas but people are finding that even in a tough economy, many dog owners still are not stinting on their pooch’s care and it’s becoming more widely recognized that there are many health benefits to having a pet in your life.

So, while doga is best practiced in a class, especially if you’re just getting started, here’s a few simple instruction to get your started.  You can both yourself and your dog used to it and see if it’s for you. Hey, if it’s not, how about a little poochie pilates? :)

 See Video Below By Brenda Bryan


Busy Pets Are Happy Pets: Fun Ways to Keep Your Pet Active

It seems like the most natural thing in the world—our pets need food, water, medical care and lots of love. But dogs and cats have other needs, too. Our furry friends need ample physical exercise and mental stimulation to lead truly full and happy lives. ” To prevent behavior and health problems, Kristen recommends the following physical and mental workouts—both when you’re there to join the fun and when your pet is home alone.

Move it! Healthy adult dogs need at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise twice a day. Jogging, swimming and playing at the dog park are all great ways to burn excess energy.

  • Get Their Games On: Engage in structured games, like fetch and tug-of-war—they’re not only great exercise but also teach your pet impulse control and strengthen the bond between you.
  • Engage in the Hunt: Keep your dog occupied when he’s home alone by giving him a food-stuffed puzzle toy, like the Kong, or some tasty chew toys
    Let’s Get Physical: Like their canine counterparts, cats also need plenty of aerobic exercise. Get kitty fit with rousing play sessions, such as chase and fetch with furry toys, small balls or toy mice.
  • Feline Pastimes: Encourage your cat’s favorite home alone activities, including bird watching, exploring paper bags or boxes, watching cat videos or spending time in secure outdoor enclosures.
  • Teach Your Cat New Tricks! Felines are quick studies and can learn practical skills like coming when called, sitting up, rolling over and even using the toilet!
    If you'd like to read more:
  • http://www.aspca.org/blog/busy-pets-are-happy-pets.html


Buzzle.Com..  Fun With Your Pets...


Buzzle.com is comprised of a dynamic network of authors and content contributors who we proudly refer to as our Intelligent Life on the Web. As subject experts, our authors and content contributors create an informative, yet comfortable place for finding information about everything from animals to tourism. With current news in our What’s the Buzz? section, thousands of interesting categories, endless entertainment from our Escape Hatch, an interactive online community, and thought-provoking polls, Buzzle.com offers a medium through which to share knowledge of the world.

Please see our Endless Buzz page for more.



Fun things to do with your dog!They do all kinds of fun things together and so can you!

We put together this Wiki to introduce you to all kinds of fun things you can do with your dog. And the best part is there are lots of links for you to find more information, get you and your dog off the couch, and having fun! We hope you enjoy this Wiki. Be sure and check back often, 'cause we'll be adding more and more fun stuff, all the time.

Fun things you can do with your dog anywhere!
Dogs love games! And even though you may be training them, they think it's fun! So get busy and play with your dog.


Camp Bow Wow / Find a location near you


Camp Bow Wow® - Premier Doggy Day and Overnight Camp®

Camp Bow Wow® provides a fun, safe and upscale environment for dogs to play, romp and receive lots of love and attention! We provide doggy day Camp for clients wishing to drop their dogs off in the morning and pick them up in the evening, as well as overnight boarding for travelers. Overnight boarders play in the day Camp program during the day and have their own individual cabins at night. Some of our Camps also offer a variety of other services including grooming, training, and an assortment of retail items, including Camp Bow Wow branded dog bowls, collars, clothing, bandanas and more!

Camp Bow Wow Services

  • All Day Play, Snooze the Night Away®
  • Large Indoor & Outdoor Play Areas
  • Certified Camp Counselors®
  • Live Camper Cams®
  • Spacious Cabins with Comfy Cots
  • Tasty Bedtime Campfire Treats

Where A Dog Can Be A Dog!®

Our Canine Campers spend all day at Day Camp, from early in the morning to late in the evening, romping and playing indoors and outdoors with lots of attention from our well-trained certified Camper Care Specialists and Certified Camp Counselors®. Overnight campers even get special "campfire" treats each night before lights out, when they are tucked into their own spacious, clean Camp Bow Wow® cabin. Each cabin includes a comfy bed with a fleece blanket to curl up on in a climate controlled atmosphere. Campers from the same household can even stay together in the same cabin. In addition, Camp Web Cam monitoring and professional security systems make sure all our Campers are happy and safe!ervice for our Campers, and peace of mind for their parents. Since we started franchising in 2003, we have grown to over 100 Camps and 75 Home Buddies franchise territories nationwide, plus one in Canada. As Camp Bow Wow grows, our simple philosophy remains the same: It’s all about the dogs.




Fun things to do with kittens.


Kittens are like simple people: easy to entertain. To be quite honest, when it comes to kittens I am VERY easily entertained. They are just so cute and cuddly! How can you resist that tiny, high-pitched "mew", that soft fur, and slow purring sound? Better yet, how can you resist coming up with ways to make them do funny things?

One fun thing to do with kittens is to watch them go crazy over shiny things. Take a laser pointer or a flashlight and make circle motions around the kitten in the dark. Eventually the kitten will get dizzy. This is one way to get a good laugh. Make the light dance on the walls and skid across floors, and your kitten will be sure to follow. 

Kittens love dangly things. You could go to the store and buy one of those elastic strings with various doodads attached, but I prefer to be cheap. One thing I did as a child (and admittedly still do from time to time) is to get a rope with a small toy attached to it. In my house it was a cat mouse toy. Tie one end of the rope to something that moves, such as the ceiling fan. Turn the fan on at a moderate speed and watch the kitten go flying through the air in a vain attempt to capture the flying beast.

Sometimes, the most simplest of things can keep kittens amused for hours. Just look around your house and there will surely be something that makes for a great cat toy. If there is a bottle cap without a bottle attached to it, she will take the cap in her mouth and bring it at floor level. Then she will smack it across the floor for hours.

Does your kitten have a toe fetish? When my cats see my toes wiggle under the blanket, they go nuts. As long as you have a couple of layers and maybe a good threshold of pain, this can make for a good time.

When playing with your kitten, just remember that they are not stuffed animals. Do not throw them in the air or give them toys they can choke on. After all, kittens are only fun so long as they're alive.

If you'd like to read more:


How to Entertain Your Betta Fish


One of my 
bettas, Socrates

Bettas are generally curious and social fish. Hopefully, I'll give you a few things you can do to help keep his curiosity sharp and maybe have some fun with him (or her).

Things You'll Need:

  1. Now we come to the more peaceful/playful - and perhaps even "educational" things you can do with your betta. One thing I notice is they seem to like following things that move. This is especially the case if it is the only moving object in an otherwise static environment. This is where the balled up pieces of paper come in. All I do is toss them in the air where the betta can see it, and let it hit the ground near their aquarium. Many times, they will see it and chase it. They'll then look down at it and try to move towards it to see what it is. This triggers their curiosity and helps also get them interested in their environment (making them even more curious).

  2. Another thing you can try it putting some ping-pong balls in the water. Don't worry, it's safe (but wash them first if they were used for something else or you just bought them). Ping-pong balls will float and move around with the current, which can get them interested in them. Try to get balls of different colors because bettas CAN recognize colors and even have preferences (or hatreds) of certain colors. I had one betta that HATED the yellow ping-pong ball while it happily chased the others around for hours. But when it saw the yellow one, it would bite it and hit it away from the others! Perhaps your bettas will display such a nature if given a chance.

  3. Another thing to try with the ping-pong balls is test your betta's problem solving skills. Yes, some bettas can do this. It's best to try this when they are hungry. What you do is set the ping-pongs balls to block of a corner of your betta's aquarium. Then put some floating food in the blocked off area. See if your betta can figure out how to get the food. It can be interesting to watch how they solve this problem. Some will use force. Some will try to squeeze between openings, etc.

  4. Another thing to try is simply putting things around their aquarium for them to look at. It may not seem like it, but they do notice a chance in environment outside their aquarium, and changing what's in front of/behind/around their aquarium is a "change in environment" as far as their minds are concerned. This is where the various objects I mentioned needing will come in. Anything is fine. Lamps, pictures, rocks, pencils, memory cards, screws, socks, whatever. Your betta may even flare at it, especially if it has bright/multiple colors or patterns.

By KBLover



Recycled household items to make Cat toys.


By Stephanie Sharpe, Planet Green

Cat lovers will do almost anything for their cats. Buy organic treats, luxurious cat beds, fancy toys—anything to keep your kitty comfortable and entertained. This makes for big business surrounding pet pampering. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Your feline friend may be just as happy with ‘toys’ you already have around the house.

For example I’ve always heard that cats love the plastic rings from the tops of milk jugs. However my cats have long been deprived since I tend to buy soy milk or organic milk in cartons. But thanks to my roommate, my cats have now discovered the joy of milk cap rings, and I discovered the joy of watching them play with them. Take a break from kitty consumerism and try offering a few of these reusable household items as toys. You can spice up the ‘toys’ with cat nips or treats to make them even more interesting. It’s a great way to reuse household items that were headed for the recycling bin anyway, plus have tons of fun with your kitty.

Household Items that Double as Cat Toys

Animal Planet also suggests:

  • Toilet paper tubes (try putting treats inside)
  • Wine cork
  • Shower curtain rings
  • Egg carton with treats inside

Note: for your cat’s safety, don’t let them play with anything smaller than a ping pong ball without supervision. Also be wary of strings and ribbons, cats can easily choke on these.



The Best Stuffed Dog Toy (…In The Eyes Of My Dog)

It's been a running joke among those who know us... Our dog, Tenor, uses this one huge stuffed animal as a "pacifier." No joke.  Whenever he's stressed, anxious, or even happily excited, he sprints to find his dolphin toy. And it legitimately seems to calm him. He just holds it squarely in his mouth, while wagging his tail rapidly and blinking his eyes -- watching us closely to gauge our next move and how that move will (or will not) involve him. It's the sweetest thing! But … 

What’s The Difference Between Purebred, Mixed Breed, and Hybrid Dogs?

Are you wondering how to tell the difference between a purebreed dog, a mixed breed dog, and a hybrid dog? You're definitely not alone. Many use the terms interchangeably.So, here's what you need to know about purebred dogs, mixed breed dogs, and hybrid dogs...

Best Indestructible Dog Toys For Aggressive Chewers

It's a fact, dogs are going to chew. Chewing is just as natural to them as wagging their tails. While chewing can be an annoying habit for the dog owner to witness (and have to deal with) every day -- especially if your dog is chewing on something that you value -- you can train your dog to chew other things.  Your best bet is to find some great chew-friendly dog toys. Here are some almost-indestructible dog toys that you might want to try...  

To see more fun stuff: http://dogs.thefuntimesguide.com/category/home-garden/fun-dog-stuff

Hamsters are born to run!   

In the wild, hamsters would travel miles every night in search of food, and some hamsters in captivity have been reported to run up to 8 km per night on their exercise wheels. Hamsters need lots of exercise and most pet hamsters love to use exercise wheels.

The Running Surface
The best kind of hamster wheel has a solid surface (not rungs) that either attaches to the side of the cage or is free standing without side supports than span the wheel opening. The common wire wheel that looks like a ladder wrapped into a circle with side bars for support is not the best choice as it can cause injuries.

Noise Levels
Keeping in mind hamsters are nocturnal and generally use their wheel a lot at night, you definitely want a quiet wheel. This is especially true if you share your room with a hamster! A squirt of vegetable oil is a safe option for greasing squeaky wheels.

I can't find any absolute recommendations for minimum sizes of exercise wheels. Most marketed for hamsters will be suitable, keeping in mind that the smaller wheels are best suited to dwarf hamsters only, and larger hamster wheels should be used for Syrian (golden, teddy bear, etc) hamsters. Get the largest hamster wheel that you can, since a wheel that is too large shouldn't pose problems, but a wheel that is too small will be uncomfortable for your hamster.

Alternatives to Wheels
The run-about balls for exercise outside of the cage are popular, but given the amount of running most hamsters like to do won't really provide sufficient exercise on their own. As a novelty or additional means of exercise they are fine, though. These are available as a simple ball, a wheel shape that propels a car frame and other novelty shapes. There is also now a track system that you can set up to keep your hamster's movements in a run-about contained. Be careful not to leave a hamster in one of these balls for too long or they may overheat (15-20 minutes at a time is plenty), and never use them around stairs that the hamster could tumble down.

If you'd like to read more:



Sitter City. Find Pet Sitters All Over The United States.

At Sittercity, our mission is to connect parents with caregivers in their area to give each side what they want - some time off for adults-only activities and access to a multitude of child and pet care jobs.


With over 150,000 caregivers across the country, Sittercity is the nation's largest and most easily accessible database for babysitters, nannies and pet sitters.

A four-step screening process
Comprehensive sitter profiles
FREE access to background checks
Sitter video interviews





Doggeek.com was started by members of Splat Productions, LLC as a way for them to find information for traveling with their dogs. The site is ran for the sole purpose of the members of Splat Productions, LLC staff to be able to travel with their pets and to share the information they have gathered with the world. So that others may travel with their best friends also. It's been years since the beginning and we're still having fun! Doggeek.com and Splat Productions, LLC retains the right to list, not to list, or delist any company or person as they see fit. Doggeek.com WILL NOT list any pet breeders in their listings. Sorry, there are too many pets being euthanized every day for us to promote breeders. Doggeek.com will also NOT LIST any pet stores that sell animals, trainers who use questionable method, and dog sitters, groomers, or others who Doggeek.com has received complaints about.




Below is a summary of how to make dog stuff or build it using our detailed instructions.

Dog Accessories
Includes instructions for making fur accessories (see "Bows, Ribbon" below), a bandana, dog tags, portable and no-skid dog bowls, and sunglasses.

Dog Beds
Make a dog bed out of foam with a sewn cover. Turn a couple of old couch cushions into a dog bed or a dog bed with pockets. Or make a portable dog bed pad that can be used wherever you go.

Dog Boxes, Dog Crates
Tips for making your own dog truck boxes and crates, as well as a crate cover.

Dog Carting
Using dogs to pull carts is a centuries old practice. Learn how to build modern day versions and how to train your dog to pull them.

Instructions and ideas for making dog coats, sweaters and socks.

Plenty of ideas to create collars out nylon and other materials.

Dog Costumes
Get ideas and patterns for dog costumes, including simple capes, hats and more.

Dog Exercise Equipment
An overview of what you can construct for dog exercise such as agility, joring, and bicycle equipment, as well as unique homemade exercise toys.

Making Your Own Dog Food
A guide to making homemade dog food, whether it's raw or cooked.

Dog Party
Some ideas to get you started to make dog stuff from scratch for that next dog birthday party or those holiday gifts.

A custom short pulling harness and links to another site offering instructions to make other kinds of harnesses.

Dog Houses
Build a dog house out of plywood or a practice one out of cardboard. Ideas for adding insulation, a porch or a ramp. See our comparison charts on doghouse plans.

Make a variety of leashes so you can have one for every occasion.

Dog Party
Some ideas to get you started to make dog stuff from scratch for that next dog birthday party.

Custom Built Dog Ramps
Build dog ramps for indoors or out so your dog can get up on a bed or sofa or in and out of a car, house, pool or boat.

Doggie Stairs
Doggie steps can help dogs with places too high too reach.

Homemade Toys
Make dog stuff such as cheap, homemade dog toys.

Homemade Dog Treats
Recipes for healthy dog treats. Some require baking, others don't.

Dog Wheelchairs
Information about dog wheelchairs and links to some homemade dog wheel chair designs.

To see more:  http://www.make-and-build-dog-stuff.com/

Tail Tube...

The Pet Lover's
What is All Pets Radio and Tail Tube?
All Pets Radio is the most exciting new internet radio station, that is all about the greatest creatures on earth ... our pets!! If you have a pet, know someone who owns a pet, or have just always wanted a pet, you have come to the right place. All Pets Radio is fun, entertaining, and educational! All types of pets and pet owners are welcome to listen, and interact with the various programs featured on All Pets Radio. So if you're crazy about cats, down with dogs, or just happy with horses, then All Pets Radio is the station for you!  Why do I have to download a plug in to listen?
This stream is Abacast Enabled providing a higher quality stream connection, allowing unlimited audience (i.e. NO "Server Full" messages), requiring a FREE Plug-in , and sharing your listening experience! If you have any trouble listening to this stream please contact Abacast Support .




 Travel Friendly Pet Places



DogFriendly.com LogoDogFriendly.com®  since 1998 has published world-wide pet travel guides for people with dogs of all sizes & breeds. City Guides show pet-friendly hotels, attractions such as tours, stores & historical sites, campgrounds, parks& off-leash parks, beaches, patio dining, skiing and more. Also view FREE listings , highway guides, our blog,  or our dog travel books/ebooks.  Join Our Newsletter and find out about everything dog-friendly.

For U.S. Pet Travel Guides select a state(Larger):
Washington Montana Idaho Oregon California Nevada Utah Arizona Wyoming Colorado New Mexico Texas Oklahoma Kansas Nebraska South Dakota North Dakota Minnesota Iowa Missouri Arkansas Louisiana Wisconsin Illinois Michigan Indiana Ohio Kentucky Tennessee Mississippi Alabama Georgia Florida South Carolina North Carolina Virginia West Virginia Maryland Pennsylvania New York Vermont New Hampshire Maine Massachusetts Connecticut Rhode Island New Jersey Delaware Alaska Hawaii




We offer FREE online dog travel guides for dogs of all sizes and breeds. DogFriendly.com lists thousands of United States and Canada pet-friendly accommodations like motels, hotels, resorts, bed and breakfast inns, and vacation home and cabin rentals. But that's not all. In addition to lodging, we also offer over 70 nationwide dog-friendly City Guides. From pet-friendly attractions and outdoor restaurants to parks, beaches and even upscale stores, we have quite a variety of places for you and your best friend to visit. Here are just a few examples of dog-friendly places we list in our City Guides:

To view our FREE online travel guide, please look here.

Main Page to Dog Friendly: http://www.dogfriendly.com/

Feline Madness Fun With Your Cats..  


Fun Things To Do With Your Cat/Kitten

1. Get a big box (large shoe box etc) and cut different size and shape holes on the top and the side. Put a ball or toy inside. Wait for the cat to jump inside and play to their hearts content.

2.  Sell tape – a) Pull of a stretch of tape and fold it over to make a loop. Stick this on the cats paw. Watch – you may want the video camera for this one! (For variations try to stick a piece of paper, match etc. or something on the top of the tape circle) b) If the cat gets wise to the method described above, leave a large loop of tape on the carpet in a walkway. Some time in the evening the cat will forget and walk over the tape… with the same hilarious results as above. c) Get a beer bottle top (it is not too heavy) and attach it to a loop of tape. Gently throw this at your sleeping cat so it sticks on their side. Watch them jump up and try to remove the offending item

3.  Get a plastic bag from any supermarket and leave on the floor. The cat will crawl inside and start to run around. Our cat puts his head and legs through the handles and runs around. This is a tear educing experience. You must watch the cat to ensure that it does not get trapped and suffocate.

4.  Get a box from the packs of 12 cans of coke, or bottles of beer. Ensure that the box is empty. Leave the box in the cats’ sight. Wait for them to get in the box and then move it around the room. Watch them stick their heads out to watch the journey. They can play in/around the box for ages.

5.  Get a small cat ball with a bell inside. Throw this up the stairs when your cat is in a playful mood. They will run up and down the stairs trying to catch the ball. When the ball is at the bottom of the stairs repeat the action and throw it to the top again. After about 10 minutes of this your cat will be panting – if they have not fallen down the stairs first.

6.  Laser pens – Shine the laser on the wall/floor, up and down the stairs, and, watch your cat going crazy to catch the dot. You must NEVER shine this in your cats’ eyes, as it will damage their eyesight.

7. When using your computer allow your cat to sit on the desk so they can see the screen. Watch as they try to kill the mouse pointer and walk all over the keyboard.

8.  When your cat is near the TV put the snooker on. It seems to hypnotize most cats as they try to hit the snooker balls or just watch the match with a helping paw!

9.  Put a ball on the inside of a plastic laundry basket (the ones with square holes in and a solid base). Watch as your cat and it’s ball run the wall of death around the sides of the basket.

10.  If your cat likes to get inside things like ours – put on the floor and empty box of tissues and watch. (The best boxes to use are the ones with the clear plastic insert.) They stick their head in the opening but usually are not able to get out easily. They will run around the floor bouncing off furniture and other items until you take the box off out of pity or it falls off… Either way it is amusing.



Irish Cat Lover Songs...



Cat stories, poetry, news, and songs for and about cats. Blog and Podcast for Cat Lovers. Welcome to the Cat Music Blog and the Cat Lovers Podcast. My name is Marc Gunn. I am a Celtic folk singer and podcaster. In 2005, I had these crazy idea to release a CD that combined my love of Irish and Celtic music with my love of cats. It was called Irish Drinking Songs for Cat Lovers. Little did I know there were thousands of other Celtic cat lovers out there. I started the Cat Lovers Podcast to share my Cat songs and to entertain other cat lovers with news, stories, jokes, and more in a podcast form. Now in it's third year of production, the podcast is produced by Tracey Tracy and comes out once a month. Subscribe or download past shows right now. Or read the Cat Music Blog. http://www.catmusicblog.com/

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