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How to recognize a bored dog and how to entertain him better?

Updated: Jul 24, 2020

Do you have a puppy or an older dog? Either way, all of them are full of energy that they need to let go off. Many different dog breeds have different jobs, which means that each one of them has to work. Without physical and mental stimulation they will be bored. Can dogs get bored? Of course! Boredom is one of the main reasons that can contribute to behavioral issues.


How can you recognize boredom in dogs?

There are many ways to recognize boredom in your dog:

  1. Barking all the time

If your puppy or dog is barking at no one at nothing you should take that as a hint! Barking is one of the main ways that help dogs release energy and help them physically and mentally. A lighter version of barking is whining, which is usually the sign of anxiety which is again connected with boredom/frustration/nervousness.

  1. Destroying furniture & clothes

Why do you think your dog steals your socks? Because he wants you to chase him! The reason for that is the pent-up energy that the dog wants to get rid of. If you have a puppy the reason for this behavior is the development of their teeth, but you should be careful with this kind of behavior in the near future.

  1. Running away from home

There are two reasons for this type of behavior: the dog is not neutered/spayed and boredom. Dogs are social specie and they want to be around other dogs and people. If we take a look at their past they are a part of wolf heritage. They were made to walk, run and be free. By running away from home they can cause many problems including injuries, other dogs attacking them, people attacking them, etc.



  1. Digging

Have you ever seen your dog digging in your garden? Believe it or not, this is another way dogs release their boredom. Digging can happen both in the garden, yard, and inside of your house, usually on your couch.

  1. Sleeping all the time

Does this sound familiar to you? Yes, just like people dogs tend to spend most of their time sleeping when they are bored. This is a very usual behavior in every specie if one is not satisfied with their needs. Sleeping and eating a lot of food is connected. Dogs that bored tend to eat more and steal your food and then go to sleep. This is a very bad combination and if this happens to your puppy or dog, make sure they become more active.


Yes, the list goes on and on, and your question is how can you fix it? Is there any way that you can prevent it? Don’t worry the answer is YES! There are so many ways that you can do with your dog that you can both enjoy. So let’s talk about it.


  1. Walk

This is a basic thing to do. Right? Physical exercise is very important and it can help out with your dogs’ energy. From the moment you get a dog, you should take a walk together. Every dog is different and each one of them has different needs. Some dogs need a little bit longer walk than usual, and it should be between 45 min. to 1 hour. Walking with your dog is the best chance to earn mutual respect and of course, both of you can enjoy it. If you have to go to work in the morning, make sure you walk your dog so that dog doesn’t destroy furniture or dig. Food should be given after walk, as a reward.

  1. Run/rollerblade/bike

If your dog is very excited or has too much energy at the moment, you can take a run with him/her, rollerblade or ride a bike whilst the dog is next to you. This is a very effective way to let out pent-up energy, but you should be careful with it. Don’t run/rollerblade/bike too fast because dogs get easily too tired and can get a stroke if not done properly.

  1. Training

Learning new tricks is one of the best ways for mental stimulation. Whether you have a puppy or an older dog start with the basic commands: sit, lay down, stay and give me a paw. There are many dog agility courses all over the world that can help your dog drain their both mental and physical stimulation. Of course there a few different levels for puppies and older dogs.

  1. Work

Every dog is capable of work. The first way of getting your dog to work is to hide a toy or food somewhere and get your dog to find it. The very good thing is that 80% of the brain is controlled by the nose, so don’t worry your dog will find it eventually. At the beginning, the dog might be confused but the dog will find it! The next thing that you can do is get a backpack made for dogs (you can find it online) that you can put on their back and take them for a walk. Dogs have a purpose and they will gladly do anything to fulfill it. This can be also used for dogs that are overweight.

  1. Ball

Dogs (especially retrievers) love to carry things. So, the perfect thing to carry and retrieve is a ball or frisbee. Again, don’t over-work them, because they can get tired too easily and that can lead to different health issues.


The list goes on and on, these are just a few ideas. The point is your dog should live a healthy and happy life and both of you can enjoy. Doing all of these things you get to experience unconditional love and happiness. Balance is very important in your dog’s and your life. Enjoy it.


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