Animal Olympics: Fun Games
To Play With Your Dog
Watching the Olympics inspires many of us to get outside, enjoy the nice summer weather and participate in some friendly competitions. Playing sports with friends and family is great, as long as you don't forget to include your canine friend. If your dog is sitting on the sidelines a little too much and begging to be a part of the action, use a few of these dog-friendly ideas to put together a little animal Olympics in your backyard and inspire your furry friend to play like a champion.
Off To The Races
Most dogs are just waiting for an excuse to run as fast as they can. Clear out some space, line up and test their speed. Some dogs just won't sit on the starting block, so if you want to go head-to-head with your pooch, have someone throw their favorite toy and see if you can beat them to it. If you have more than one dog ready to race, you could place a treat at the end of the yard for motivation. Keep treats on hand to award the winners and have an outdoor water bottle ready.
Team Of Tricksters
Old dogs can definitely learn new tricks, and almost every dog knows a few. Get together with a couple other dog owners and play a game of D-O-G. All you have to do is get your dog to perform a trick and see if the other owners can get their dogs to do the same trick. The winner is the last dog who hasn't collected all the letters. Get together with your dog before game day and practice some of the most common dog tricks and learn a few special tricks to defeat your competition.
Dog agility competitions are fun to watch on TV, but they're even more fun to create in your yard. Typical agility courses consist of jumping obstacles, tunnels, ramps and weaving poles. All of the obstacles are pretty easy to set up yourself. Jumping obstacles are easy to create. Just place two objects at the same height for your stand and put a lightweight bar, like a PVC tube, on top. Raise and lower the bar to challenge your dog and make sure the bar can be knocked off so they won't get hurt. Make sure any ramps you create are sturdy and the weaving poles you stick in the ground are flexible.
Running The Bases
Sometimes your dog just wants to be part of your backyard game. Most dog owners don't want their dogs to play because the games could get too physical and cause injuries for the dog and the people playing. Getting your dog involved doesn't mean you have to add them to the starting lineup. In backyard baseball, they could run the bases with you. In touch football, they could help protect the quarterback, and any game of catch could turn into a game of doggie-in-the-middle.