Boredom is a universal feeling that affects everyone at some point.
It’s often attributed to tasks that we’re busy with that bring no challenge or fulfillment, and our boredom could manifest in two ways – lethargy or irritability or worse – both together.
We know, of course, that boredom doesn’t last forever; well at least it shouldn’t last forever. If your boredom becomes a regular occurrence or continues for a prolonged period, then it could be warning signs of more severe mental issues like depression.
Of course, there are things we can do before it reaches that point. Thankfully.
Just like us, however, our animals can get bored as well. Dogs, especially. When dogs get bored it usually brings about some activities that we don’t approve of – like digging up the garden, chewing shoes and furniture, or just getting up to general mischievous endeavors that rile us up.
Here are things that you can do with your pet to keep them out of trouble when boredom strikes.
Your dog will show some signs and symptoms of boredom that will alert you to their entertainment (or lack thereof) levels.
Some signs include:
- Barking excessively
- Digging up your petunias or veggie garden
- Tipping over trash cans and rummaging through the contents
- Chewing your new sneakers or socks
Sometimes your dog may be looking for your attention due to boredom but if they display severe reactions of destruction or clinginess, then your dog could be suffering from Separation Anxiety (SA) that will need expert intervention.
If you’ve ruled out that your dog doesn’t suffer from Separation Anxiety and you’re convinced it’s only boredom, here’s what to do.
This will benefit you, as the owner, as well. Our predominantly sedentary lifestyles have caused a myriad of health issues. Getting up out of your couch and doing some activities with your dog will raise your heart rate and general health factor and your dog will get precious bonding time with his best friend.
The amount of exercise depends on the dog, of course. Some dogs will be happy with just a few minutes of exercise, whereas others will go for hours on end without stopping.
Consult your vet (or the internet) and find out what amount of exercise would be the best amount for your dog.
It doesn’t have to be hours at a time, either. Most owners don’t play with their pets because they assume it will take up too much time.
Throwing a ball around or playing tug of war with a rope toy are some fun ways that you can play with your beloved pooch.
They’ll be entertained and appreciate the time you spend with them, and you’ll soon realize that you’re also enjoying the experience.
This isn’t nearly as bad as it sounds.
We understand that living in the 21st century is a very busy place to be. It may not always be possible to spend time with our dogs in the way we want. Getting help is not a sign of weakness but rather shows that you care about your pup.
Having a dog walker or pet sitter take your dog out for walks when you’re not home, or taking them to the park when you’re unable to, is a great way of getting your dog physical exercise and giving them mental stimulation.
Boredom is a reality that we face daily. Our dogs suffer from the effects of it, too. Unlike us though, they don’t have the various boredom-busting activities available to them that we have.
They’ll need attention from you (or outside help) to guide them out of boredom.
Before you start shouting at Fido for digging holes all over the garden, grab a ball or toy and start playing with them.
Your dog will love it. And your garden will look better, too.