You’ve finally come to terms with the idea that your dog will need surgery. You’ve worked out how to pay for it, prepared your house for a post-surgery dog, and are ready to care for your dog while he recovers. If you have an energetic dog, you’ve probably considered how you’ll keep him quiet as he heals over the next 8–14 weeks. Boredom-response behaviors like barking, licking, leaping, whining, destruction, or despair are likely to occur.
Activities Your Dog Can Enjoy During Recovery
You can keep his mind engaged while he heals since mental stimulation is just as enjoyable to a dog as exercise. Here are some everyday activities to keep your dog occupied and out of mischief while he recovers.
1. Use food release items in place of the food bowl.
These gadgets convert a three-second feeding session into a psychologically challenging exercise by delivering kibble and soft meals like yogurt, canned dog food, or pumpkin. If your dog has never seen these objects before, begin by showing him how to utilize them.
2. If your veterinarian allows it, give your pet a raw bone.
These may be found at various pet stores and will keep your dog amused for hours. They are, however, unsightly and should be stored in a box or X-pen.
3. Make up a new game for your dog.
You can do hundreds of things with a dog that is recuperating from surgery that needs the use of its eyes, nose, or a single paw. The Woof It Up Play & Train Kit contains 80 such activities that have been tested and adapted for e-collar-wearing dogs and those with restricted mobility. Begin by picking a game to play. Your dog will like having a job, and you will be pleased with all he learns.
4. Take advantage of the dog’s sense of smell.
Certain canines may benefit from exposure to different scents. Replace the smell every two or three days with a drop of lavender or vanilla on the floor in the same area as the crate. Since a dog’s sense of smell is greater than ours, a single drop of fragrance put at least ten feet away from the crate would suffice. You might also use DAP, a dog-pleasing pheromone. Many dogs find it relaxing since it smells like mother’s milk.
5. Massage and touch might help your dog relax.
Both will improve your dog’s circulation while also helping to relax his mind and body. If your dog is sad after veterinary surgery, deliberate engagement could be beneficial.
6. Change up the toys to keep them interesting.
Consider buying five new toys in various materials and shapes. Introduce them one at a time to your dog. When you introduce the following new item on day two, take away the previous one and rotate them to maintain interest. A new toy may make a dog’s day.
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