Saturday, 22 April 2017

Current Boredom Breakers

Hey! If you didn't know already, I work a full time job, and Diego, the poor sod has to stay at home alone during my hours of work.  I did try and find a dog for him to hang out with during the day, but he much prefers not to have to share his food and toys. This means I have to find new ways to entertain him during the day and keep his mind occupied since we have moved away from my mother and Chico.

Recently, I have put three enrichment/treat toys on rotation with a similar recipe inside them and it has been working well. I usually make up two of the toys daily, and just change around which two are used each time. I have been doing this over the last month or so, and Diego seems to really enjoy it. Inside the toys I use his usual dog food, which currently is Orijen Adult, some of the Omega Plus Fish Oil and a tiny bit of peanut butter. I feed these toys instead of his breakfast, and this makes sure he isn't getting overfeed or too many extra treats.


The first toy is the mainstream Kong toy. This is one of the first toys that was put on the market as a tough toy, that can be filled with food and treats to entertain your dog. I purchased my Kong online second hand (although never used as it was still in its packaging, it had been sitting around their home for several years) back when Diego was a puppy. This has been well loved, and lost multiple times but it always finds a way back to our collection. With the Kong, I put peanut butter in the top hole as a plug, and then fill the rest with food. Once full, I add a couple of squirts of the fish oil, and then close up the bottom with more peanut butter. I let this sit while I am getting ready in the morning, and during Summer I would put it in the fridge. This lets the oil sink in a bit more to make it less likely that the kibble would just fall out.


The next toy is the Bionic Bone which is branded as another tough toy that you can fill with food and treats. This one is a different shape, and adds more challenge than the Kong. I follow the same process as with the Kong when filling this one, doing a side at a time and making sure the toy is completely filled with kibble. I find that Diego enjoys this one more as it takes more time and effort to get all the kibble pieces out. However, his tongue doesn't reach all the way in, and the shape of the toy means that food can easily get stuck in the middle. This isn't too bad with this dry mixture I have been using, but when I used to use canned dog food, it caused quite a mess. This one also holds less kibble than the other two toys so is good as a time-user that doesn't mean lots of food.



The last toy is the Furchun Cookie that I reviewed a few months ago. With this toy, I don't add the peanut butter or fish oil, just the kibble. It's perfect as a quick to prepare toy when you are just rushing out the door. This one holds more food than the other two options, but it doesn't hold Diego's attention for as long. This one is generally given to Diego daily, with either of the above options as it is good to make sure Diego is getting his usual serving of breakfast, but not too much peanut butter or oil in one day.



I find that adding these toys to Diego's daily life has made him a lot more calm, and he actually seems excited for me to leave in the mornings so he can get his toy. These are not used in replacement of walks, training or any other stimulation that I give him when I am at home. These just make sure I don't feel completely terrible about leaving him at home alone. I love these toys, but would really love to add some more to my rotation so if you have any ideas feel free to leave me a comment below, on my Facebook page, or Instagram.

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