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Does Your Dog Get Bored?

As pet owners, it is our responsibility to make our animals lives as enriched and fulfilled as possible. The average suburban dog will spend 8+ hours of their day sleeping while their owners are at work. This can lead to boredom and problematic behaviours such as chewing, digging in the yard and many more.

A simple way we can relieve our dogs of boredom is by providing them with enrichment. Enrichment can come in many forms ranging from puzzle toys, homemade food dispensing toys, or something as simple as scattering your dogs kibble in the snow or grass. All of these options provide your dog with  mental stimulation to challenge their minds and engage the senses.

Just like you meal plan and prep for yourself, a great way to ensure your dog receives enrichment every day is to make stuffed frozen kong treats in advance. Depending on how many food dispensing toys you have, you can make enough for the entire week in about 30 minutes.

Our Favourite Kong and Food Dispensing Toys

If you don’t have some that are working well for your dog already, here are our favourite food dispensing toys:

How To Make A Kibble & Treat Stuffed Kong

  1. Round up and wash all of your dog’s Kong and food dispensing toys.
  2. Next, grab your dog’s favourite treats. This is a great opportunity to use up all those treat crumbs at the bottom of the bag! If you don’t have enough crumbs, then start breaking some treats up into small pieces and place them in a strainer.
  3. Shake the strainer over a bowl until all of the treats crumbs are in the bowl.
  4. Measure 4 cups of water (you can also use chicken or beef broth with no onions to add more flavour) and place it in the microwave for about 4 minutes.
  5. Take your measuring cup and measure 3-4 cups of your dog’s kibble (the amount of kibble needed will depend on how many food dispensing toys you have, depending on the toy it can hold about ½ cups – ¾ cups of the kibble)
  6. Combine the measured kibble with the treat crumbs into the bowl.
  7. Take the water (chicken or beef broth-with no onions) from the microwave and place it in the bowl. At this point you could add in any other food items your dog likes such as yogurt, honey, or pieces of vegetables (such as carrots).
  8. Cover the entire bowl with tin foil – this keeps the heat in so the kibble can soak up all the moisture.
  9. Let it sit for about 1-2 hours – mixing the contents from time to time so that the food absorbs all of the moisture.
  10. After letting the kibble absorb the liquid, take a fork and mix the kibble. It should be quite soft and mushy as pictured below.
  11. Stuff your food dispensing toys with the mushed kibble and then place it in the freezer. You can also top the toys off with anything spreadable such as peanut butter, yogurt or cheez whiz!
  12. Give a stuffed frozen toy to your dog for their breakfast, dinner or as a special treat

That’s it! A simple way to enrich your dog’s life as well as keep them busy. For another great enrichment idea, check out our post: A Recipe For Summer Fun!

By: Chantal Turcotte KPA CTP, Fear Free Certified

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