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Today, we are counting down 10 fun things to do with your old or senior dog. Beware, these are NOT your average: play fetch, tug-of-war suggestions. Have fun playing but most of all, have fun hanging out with your senior dog.
Here we go:
#10 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Dress Up and Take Pictures
As dogs age, they begin to look remarkably dignified. Their features are mature and they look like they know a thing or two about life. A flowery or colorful scarf on your old girl or a top hat or bow tie for your old boy sends their photogenic qualities soaring.
This is definitely one I wish I’d done sooner. My dog loves the extra attention and it’s almost like he gets a spring in his step if we “oooooh” and “aaaahh” over the way he looks. Big Fun!
And if Halloween is around the corner, you can have fun making a costume that is comfortable for them to wear. The best costumes are ones they won’t fuss in while wearing.
#9 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Hide and Seek – 2 People 1 Senior Dog
1 person hides and the other walks around with the senior dog calling for the person in hiding. For instance: Julie is hiding.
“Where’s Julie”? “JULIE, JULIE, where are you?” “Here Julie?” Ask your dog to help find Julie and see what happens. Maybe your senior dog will lead you to Julie and if they do, give them great praise.
If they take more of a back seat, you can get them some much needed exercise by taking them in an out of every room before actually “finding Julie”.
Our senior dogs still want and need to feel like they’ve been helpful and this is a great way to reinforce your appreciation for a job well-done if they do in fact, find Julie.
#8 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Ever Changing Scavenger Hunt
Do not alert your dog to this game you’re about to play. Scour the fridge and pantry for at least 10 different treats suitable for your senior dog to eat. Based upon your senior dog’s mobility, hide the various treats around the house without her knowing or in a STAY command so she doesn’t see all the hiding places.
Once you’ve hidden all the treats let her sniff your hands and tell her to go “Find It”. Walk around with her so that after she finds them, you can praise her and then reassure her more are hiding.
Let her health and mobility guide the level of difficulty so that it’s an enjoyable, rewarding experience.
#7– Fun things to do with an old dog:
3 Cup Monte
If you’ve never played 3 cup monte with a senior dog, the time is now. They do better than you’d think. Using 3 cups (not clear ones), place a tasty treat under one of them and then start sliding the cups around the floor or coffee table. After a few seconds, stop sliding and ask your dog to find the treat.
If she gets it right, give the treat. If not, show her the empty cup and then start sliding again. Most dogs are really good at this game.
If it’s too difficult, poke holes in the tops of all 3 cups. This should help her win more often and make it more rewarding.
#6 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Treat Their Toys like Babies
Not all senior dogs will be able to participate in activities that involve mobility. If this is the case with your dog this is a good game to try.
Make sure he’s watching and then take one of his favorite toys and start making a fuss. Speak to his toy the way you would a baby and give it hugs and kisses. If the toy has a name, use the name for extra effect.
Your dog will likely perk up at all the attention your giving his toy and he’ll want to play along. If he takes his toy away from you, let him have it and repeat with another toy.
#5 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Recreate an Old Photograph and Share on Social Media
If you and your senior pup have been together for years then no doubt you’ve got some really great and original photographs together. Find one that will be easy for your senior dog to manage and recreate the day. Share your results on Facebook with a “then and now” caption.
If you haven’t had your old dog long enough to have old photographs, don’t despair. Any dog will do (even one from your childhood) and if the dog looks vastly different from your senior dog, it will only add to the charm.
#4 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Compose and Sing a Love Song
You do not have to be musically inclined, but it helps if you can play an instrument. Most dogs love soft, gentle music like guitar, clarinet, piano, harmonica, and some dogs can handle stronger jams.
Involve your senior dog in composing a song that’s all about him and the reasons you love him.
Composing and singing a song to your dog will make you both feel pretty good. If you cannot play an instrument you can just work on a song. Change the lyrics to one of your favorite tunes and sing him your new song.
#3 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Have a Taste Test
Taste tests are fun for your senior dog and you get to have fun learning your dog’s preferences. Humans are notorious for “saving the best for last” but a dog’s philosophy is the exact opposite.
This taste test works best if you select two or three different flavors of the same food. For instance: cheddar cheese, swiss cheese and mozzarella. Or peanut butter, almond butter, and cashew butter…whatever you have on hand.
Make each sample the same size and line them on a plate. Let her sniff each one, without eating. This can be tricky, but your senior dog is probably pretty patient with you by now.
After she’s sniffed them all, put them back on the plate and see which she eats first. Do it again tomorrow to see if results vary or if you’ve found out that your dog prefers one cheese over another. Now you know!
#2 – Fun things to do with an old dog:
Ride Around and Visit Pet Friendly Drive-thru Windows
You haven’t lived until your dog goes wild at the Tim Horton’s drive thru window. Driving around town is great on its own, but adding that extra component of a drive up window adds an extra layer of interest for your senior dog.
Order yourself a coffee and a cup of water for your senior dog. Your dog will not believe her eyes when a cup of water comes through the window and some places (like Tim Horton’s) will go the extra mile and throw in a free plain Timbit when they hear you ask for “water for my dog”.
You could also stop at a fast food place and get something that wouldn’t be too unhealthy for sharing.
Whatever happens at the drive-thru is part of the fun, but make no mistake; riding around with you is bound to be the highlight of her day.
#1 – Fun thing to do with an old dog:
Energy is real! No doubt you and your senior dog have a very special bond and can probably read each other’s minds. A great way to stay connected with your senior dog and provide much needed attention is to meditate with him.
Make sure both of you are comfortable and choose a position that you’ll be comfortable in for at least 5 minutes. Make sure phones are off and you won’t be disturbed.
Takes your dog’s front paws into your hands, close your eyes and send healing vibes. If you’ve got a paw sensitive senior, place your hands in a healing position at his side, nearest his heart.
Clear your thoughts and just be present with your dog. Make an effort to keep the sound of your breath strong but soothing. Breathe deeply and purposefully…your dog should follow suit. Enjoy for a least 5 minutes.
You might be surprised to find how relaxed and connected the two of you become, especially with some practice.
These are 10 fun things to do with an older dog, but it should stop here. Check out this article to continue the fun: Entertainment for Senior Dogs –