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Everyone experiences those days where you might feel a little more sluggish and irritated than usual – even your dog. Unfortunately, you (and your dog) might have a case of cabin fever. Cabin fever refers to feelings of irritability from being cooped up for too long, boredom, lack of exercise or lack of companionship. Especially during the winter months, it’s important to recharge and keep active, both physically and mentally. If you feel like your dog is acting out, or particularly irritable, it’s time you guys switch up the scenario or get out of the house. Remember to take note of your mood and stress and see if that may or may not be contributing to the general atmosphere in the house, as dogs frequently pick up and mimic the moods of their owners. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of fun activities for the entire family to do to combat cabin fever.
Go for a brisk walk
Take a walk around the neighbourhood if the weather isn’t too bad. Sometimes all we need is some fresh air! Keep the temperature and weather in mind to determine the duration of the walk. Your pet may need some extra protection like a jersey or winter coat. Walking is one of the best ways to shake off the edginess you felt indoors and refresh and re-energise. Look around, breathe in the fresh air and take in the sights of the crisp winter day.
Enrol in classes
Taking classes is a great way to entertain both you and your dog on those dreary winter days. From agility and obedience classes to doggy yoga. This isn’t only great bonding time for the whole family but also a great way to stimulate you and your dog mentally and physically. Positive reinforcement classes are enjoyable for dogs of all ages, regardless of their skill level and you’re likely to bump into some other dog parents too – added puppy play date! Alternatively, if the weather isn’t permitting you to go outside, look for some fun and stimulating online tutorials or classes you can do straight from the comfort of your home.
Tire your dog out by playing indoor games like hide and seek. Or, move away all the furniture and build a big obstacle course. Have fun and take part yourself. Your dog will love the active play, and you’ll move around a bit too. Just be sure to store all the breakables far away. If your house isn’t big enough to accommodate for playtime for the whole family, consider checking out local parks or dog trainers in the area which might offer large indoor dog playparks.
Take a hike
South African winters aren’t too notorious for inhibiting us to spend some time outdoors. Put on your boots and go for it. If you dress warm enough – a nearby hike through a field, mountain or forest isn’t off the chart.
Out to eat
If you want to go out of the house and grab a bite to eat, there’s no reason that your dog shouldn’t join. Many restaurants cater to dogs as well. Find restaurants or local marketplaces in your area that allow dogs to visit. This is a great way to have an outing for both you and your pooch. Many restaurants will also offer your dog a fresh, clean bowl of water as well. stimulating online tutorials or classes you can do straight from the comfort of your home.
Treat yourself and your dog by going for an afternoon drive. Your dog will love the windows rolled down and the wind blowing through his fluffy ears with his tongue out. This is also a great opportunity to see some scenery and maybe make a pit stop or two.
Treat yourself and your dog by baking some dog-friendly cookies. Nothing smells better than the yummy aroma of freshly baked goods! If you’re up for the challenge, bake some savoury cookies that your dog can enjoy. If you’re feeling a bit peckish yourself, you can always bake your own as well, but be sure not
to get the two mixed up.
Fun activities to combat cabin