In the busy world we currently live in, sometimes even the most important things like our pets can get neglected. It isn’t intentional, but there are tonnes of ways a bored dog can show you they’re restless and not getting enough attention.
It could be that you’ve been at work and they have been left alone, or just that you have been too busy to really give them enough real time over the weekend. In all fairness, it can happen to the best of us. In any case, a bored dog will, without a doubt, let you know. You just need to know how that happens.
No matter what’s going on with your dog, we’re here to help. To help stop the problem and prevent things from getting any worse than they need to be, we’ve put together some useful tips on what to look out for to let you know how your furry companion is really feeling.
Make sure you take notes!
1. Pawing and Barking for Attention
One big sign that your dog is getting bored can be that they start following you around and pawing for attention. If dogs are feeling particularly bored, they can even resort to barking loudly and jumping up at people and objects. In all honesty, unless you have a very hyper dog, it’s hard to miss!
2. Antsy or restless behaviour
Dogs becoming restless and agitated is another sure sign they are bored. If they have nothing to do, they can show their boredom through pacing, aimlessly wandering and lying around. They’re more like humans than we think, and that can be a sure-fire way of seeing the tell-tale signs of boredom.
3. Breaking Household Items
Another very hard to miss sign of a bored dog is wrecking the place. It’s an absolute nightmare and can cost a pretty penny too. Chewing and breaking household items, and even destroying furniture are all possibilities if things get too dull. In an attempt to entertain themselves, your shoes, sofa, and even the TV remote are all at risk of some bored teeth.
4. Digging up the Garden
This is a true classic, and it’s sadly for good reason. Sometimes, if dogs can get outside, they can take their boredom out on your garden. That sounds harmless, but if it gets out of hand, your lawn can seriously pay the price. Dogs digging up gardens or plants is often a way they try to distract themselves from being bored and looking for something fun to do. It’s easy to do too, and it’s a very painful fix.
5. Digging through the Rubbish
Just in case making a mess of your garden wasn’t enough, the damage can come back to your kitchen too. This is a real stinker. Some dogs can actually resort to digging through rubbish and bins instead. In really bad cases, this isn’t just a bad-smelling issue either. If your dog eats anything it shouldn’t which is really easy to do in the bins, you may well need a trip to the vet afterwards too. It can be really serious.
Ways to help a bored dog
If your dog has started showing any of these signs, there are lots of ways to fix this, and these are some of the best:
Exercising is the biggest and easiest fix to dog boredom. Take your dog for a long walk, or a play in the park. If your dog is particularly bored, shake things up a bit and walk a different route so your dog can see new places and enjoy something different. When your dog is both physically and mentally exhausted, they’re much more likely to sleep the day away and have their more active hours around you.
New toys are a sure way to cheer your bored dog right up. Give them something new to play with and focus their attention on for a while. This is particularly helpful if you are going to be busy for a while and can’t give your dog your full attention. It also allows a combination of the mental and physical exercise too if you get the right toys.
Shake up the way you play with your dog by hiding treats for them to find, playing a game of tug of war or even breaking out the bubbles. At least one of these is sure to cheer your dog up. Not only does it give them something to do, but it allows them to use their senses and stimulate their brains.
Meeting other dogs at day centres, or even getting another dog, gives your dog someone else of his kind to spend time with. This can help if you are someone who will be out at work all day as it gives your dog a companion to play and bond with so you don’t have to worry about them being alone and waiting for you to come home. It depends dramatically on your dog and their preferences, but it can be a big help.
Possibly the simplest solution of all: give your dog some love. All they want is someone to cuddle and play with. If you have been out all day, give them some extra attention when you get home or take them for a longer walk. Or make sure you take the time to spend some time with them when you are relaxing in an evening.
Ultimately, it’s impossible to spend your whole life around your dog. It just can’t be done when you have a life to live, even if you’d like to. In our busy lives, dogs are sure to get bored sometimes.
If your dog starts to show any of these signs, try not to get too frustrated with them and understand they are just after some attention. Try to step in before things get out of hand. Get them up and about and they are sure to cheer right up. Remember; a bored dog is definitely going to let you know!