As we adjust to spending more time away from home, it’s essential to keep our furry friends entertained and occupied while they’re home alone. Here are some ways to keep your pets entertained while they have the run of the house for the day.
To start, leave your dog or cat in an area of the house where they feel comfortable and secure. For dogs, consider blocking off a part of the house like the living room, where they have all their favorite toys and a cuddly cave bed. For kitties, you could make a spot on a windowsill or leave out a self-warming bed for them to snuggle up in.
Fill a toy with frozen treats like peanut butter, which can keep them busy for hours. Another option is to use treat-dispensing and puzzle toys that reward your pet for completing a challenge and keep them mentally stimulated. Try out a fun wobbly toy or an interactive puzzle for dogs and a treat maze or a hidden toy box for cats.
If your pet loves to chase, try an automated toy that jumps, wiggles, and rolls for your cat or a toy that can be paired with a smartphone app for your dog. You can also feed your hungry backyard birds and give your kitties something to watch with a window feeder.
Besides toys, there are TV networks, YouTube channels, and radio stations tailored to keeping your dog or cat engaged and calm. For pups, turn on DOGTV, a channel designed to alleviate stress and anxiety throughout the day. For cats, there are a ton of fun YouTube channels with flying birds, moving scenery, and kitty-approved games.
Snuffle mats are also a great way to keep your pup engaged in nose play. These fun mats come in a ton of adorable patterns to keep your dog entertained while they hunt for every last bit of crumbly treats. For cats, try out a two-in-one scratcher bed infused with catnip, which keeps claws off your furniture and provides a great nap space.
Finally, before you leave, sprinkle some catnip on cat beds or toys, or keep some enticing catnip toys behind closed doors and only take them out right before you leave to keep them feeling excited and new.
Remember to give your pet enough food and water, exercise your dog before you leave, and pick up any items that could be dangerous for them to get into. And, if you want to check in on them while you’re out and about, set up a Google Nest Cam to monitor their activity and make sure they’re relaxed and enjoying their new toys and treats from wherever you are.