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How can I help my pup amuse himself a bit more?

(15 Posts)
harryhausen Fri 06-Nov-15 18:20:55

I have a beautiful border terrier puppy. He's 6 months old. I work from home so am with him all the time (apart from trips to shops etc).

At the moment I'm taking him for a long walk every morning, 1.5 to 2 hours. Here he runs off the lead and meets and plays with lots of other dogs. All fantastic and I'm really enjoying him. However, when we get home, he has a 45 minute nap and then he's back up, sitting on my feet, following me everywhere, chewing my shoes and generally wanting me to play. To be honest, I'm finding it very hard to do any work at all.

Is this all normal? He sleeps really well all night in his crate downstairs. I often buy him a filled hoof to chew etc. This may him amuse him for a bit but not long. He also likes ripping up cuddly toys so I've been getting the odd cheap cuddly from charity shops etc.

Is there anything else I can try to get him amused and keep his brain ticking over without my constant input all the time? Or do I just keep going?

(Hope that doesn't make me sound like a crap dog owner!)smile

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Fri 06-Nov-15 18:26:19

Keep some of his kibble back from his meals and feed him from a trickle feeder like this.

Fill a Kong with yogurt, peanut butter, banana, cream cheese, cottage cheese and other tasty treats and give that to him.

harryhausen Fri 06-Nov-15 18:36:35

That's a great idea. I've not tried a Kong toy yet either.

ceres Fri 06-Nov-15 19:20:02

1.5 to 2 hours seems like a lot of exercise for a 6 month old puppy. I tend go by the 5 minutes per month of age rule.

Have you tried nylabones and other chew toys? some dogs love toys others don't - hopefully yours will!

ArtyKitty Fri 06-Nov-15 21:51:46

The Kong wobbler is a fun way to give dinner. (altho the skirting board is a bit knackered) I've found a star shaped winalot biscuit or bonio is quite hard to get out of a medium Kong when you really shove it in! We also have a rubber ring toy a friend her which you can pop kibble in. Nothing takes her that long but it gives me time to settle and if I'm settled at task when she finds me she seems to settle down herself!

NigelLikesSalad Fri 06-Nov-15 22:14:58

That's a lot of walking for a 6 month old pup! 5 minute rule is a good one to follow as their joints are still developing.
We bought ours a treat ball. When he was tiny it would keep him entertained for a god 45 mins and he'd be so tired once it was empty he was happy to nap.
As above, Kong stuff is great. I used to freeze stuff in ours and he would just lie there licking it all day.

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Fri 06-Nov-15 22:28:17

We've got a treat ball and Monty loves chasing it round the kitchen. He also like an angler to chew on. They're natural and really tough and don't splinter likes bones do although they can break bits off if you've got a really good strong biter.

He probably is getting a bit too much exercise and that might be the cause of his excitement, he might be overstimulated. Try cutting back and replacing walk time with five minutes of training and the toys and he might calm down. I'm no expert but anything's worth a try. grin

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Fri 06-Nov-15 22:28:46

That's antler, obviously, not poor little innocent fishermen.

harryhausen Sat 07-Nov-15 10:01:04

Thanks everyone. Great tips. Re the walking. It started getting so long as he was so eager and not at all tired. I started off for 30 mins or so but he was still begging at the door. Maybe I'll cut down a bit and look into doing more training type excercises then. Thanks x

Shriek Sat 07-Nov-15 11:57:05

thats the thing about dpups, they will take all the walking you can give, and it will make them expect more and keep on the go more.

You have only tried to suit what you have felt are his needs, but dpups are very easily adreanlised, all and every activity will feed this and its just their nature that if you get them used to it they will not stop all day and night.

AT six months, dpup should still be having lots of downtime (spending lots of time in between activities, learning to settle and become a calm doggie or he'll drive you nuts.

I am no expert on this breed, and it might be also that you have got yourself a dpup that is going to express this type of nature. Your best bet would be to contact the breeder, as they are expert in this breed and will tell you the routine they have for their dpups at this age, but this amount of walking is way way too much, their joints are not fully form and all the pounding can set up problems very early on. He should be up to about 20-30 mins at this age!

Good idea for spending his time using his brain with some training.

Shriek Sat 07-Nov-15 11:58:38

so eager - make sure you stay in charge, with his lead walking and routine.

Noofly Sat 07-Nov-15 21:49:24

I used to do a lot of training on walks- heel work, whistle training, recall around distractions etc on top of his racing through the fields and woods. This helped wear him out without needing super long walks (plus I now have a well trained dog on walks grin )

ElleGrace Sun 08-Nov-15 13:14:27

I can definitely relate with you on this one! I have a 5 month old samoyed pup who sure gives me a run for my money!
One thing I can suggest is that you vary the length of his walks- I know from experience that giving a dog consistently long walks will make them grow to expect such a walk. Shorter walks can tire your pup out just as much as long walks- Personally I save the long, slow walks for places like forests, meadows, fields etc so as not to overly stimulate him with mental and physical exercise. Then, for the short walks I go to more fast paced environments e.g. a walk around my suburb or a park that is very dog-frequented.
Also, I always take a ball on walks with me so that if I'm lucky enough to find a park bench I can have a sit down whilst playing fetch with my pup... easily one of the quickest ways to tire him out!
I have to agree with everyone else that good training can really help tire out your pup.... I don't hear from mine for atleast an hour after a good, fifteen-minute training session!
An important thing to remember is that the more exercise, stimulation and play time you give your pup, the more they will want. Although puppies need lots of sleep they're somewhat like children in that they'll only take it if there's no better offerings! If you know that your pup has had a sufficient amount of attention, don't be afraid to give him a good chew toy and put him in his cage/ a separate room or simply ignore his pleas for attention for a while.
One other thing that I can't get enough of at the moment is the flavoured chews sold for a couple of pounds at B&M. They last for ages, don't emit a strong smell, don't get manky, are cheap, aren't unhealthy for your dog, clean his teeth, help soothe teething etc.etc.etc. Keeps my pup entertained for atleast 5 minutes! wink
Best of luck and keep enjoying your pup!

Cheerfulmarybrown Sun 08-Nov-15 13:24:54

You don't need to shell our for treat balls . Core an eating apple and either fill with kibble or freeze with the same filling you would put in a kong. This can keep dogs busy for ages. With a pup as with all chew toys does require supervision

Shriek Sun 08-Nov-15 19:35:33

please try to avoid the task of 'tiring out' your dpup, when they are young this really isn't the objective, its just to get a little exercise/socialisaton/lead and recall work. They will play at home.

continually chasing balls,etc. can cause cruciate problems, especially in those that are predisposed, and joint stresses, just take it easy with dpup and try to keep within reasonable exercise limits for their benefit.

they will stay awake all the time they have something to do! grin and its very important (to avoid over adrenalising) learning to settle.

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