10 super creative ways to engage your dog Indoors

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10 super creative ways to engage with your dog Indoors

Playing with your dog indoors can be difficult, especially if you live in an apartment and don’t have access to large, grassy fields or vast forests in which to let pooch run around, chase sticks and romp through the tall grasses. 

Luckily, there are many ways to engage with your dog when indoors that don’t require much space or equipment beyond the cost of a small bag of treats and some of Pooch’s  favourite toys from home. 

Indoor Fun For Dogs Who Can’t Get Enough Exercise

Indoors dogs can be happy and healthy. Sometimes, though, it can be hard to come up with new ways to keep them entertained and engaged. 

Keep ‘Em Busy With These Super Creative Tips

Dogs need exercise, just like us humans. In fact, their recommended amount of daily exercise is around half an hour per day. 

For many dog owners, that’s half an hour too much time spent outside in bad weather or nasty heat, which means exercising dogs inside has a lot of advantages. 

But not all dogs can play fetch or go for a run; some breeds just aren’t up for it. 

If you have one of these indoor dogs (and there are lots of them out there), then how can you keep them busy and make sure they stay fit? 

The answer is simple: get creative! Here are 10 playful games and activities that any dog can do indoors. And bonus points if you find ways to tie more than one into each game!

Here are 10 of our favorite indoor activities for dogs that require little or no equipment and take very little time. 

Use these ideas as inspiration for keeping your dog busy, engaged, stimulated – and happy!


10 super creative ways to engage with your dog Indoors


Create an Obstacle Course for your pooch
With an obstacle course, there are a plethora of options for exhausting your dog. To make jumps for your dog to go over or limbo bars for him to go through, you may use tape to span a doorway.

Advice from the pros: Pack a roll of blue painter’s tape in your dog’s travel kit so that he may use it at hotels and vacation rentals.

You may also rearrange the furnishings to make it easier for them to move. Instruct them to jump up and down on the sofa and other furniture, if it is permitted. Please keep in mind that not all accommodations let pets on the furnishings.

All of our furniture are pet-friendly, including the mattresses. Thus, we utilise some of Rover’s  favourite stuffed animals as incentives for getting her to jump on and off the sofa, as well as to climb the first few steps of our ladder.

Test your dog’s intelligence. 

There are a plethora of them that are accessible for free on the internet. 

I haven’t tried any yet, so I can’t suggest one in particular, but this is something that is on our to-do list for the house. Most contain a number of tasks that may be used as enjoyable training activities, independent of whether or not you really score your dog on each challenge.

Pursue the tasty reward. 

Another popular choice around here. 

This straightforward game is exactly what it sounds like: You scatter goodies all over the place, and your dog hunts them down to get them. 

As a means of making this more difficult, we’ve been working on placing all three boys in a sit/wait position while throwing a treat, then releasing them one at a time to get the reward. 

It’s difficult for the other two to remain calm and refrain from snatching a thrown goodie! 

They’ve done a lot of repetitions and are all emotionally and physically exhausted. 

Adding STAIRS to this workout will boost the aerobic benefit.

Toys For Destructive Dogs

Dogs will play aggressively if they’re bored or left alone for long periods of time, and indoor dogs are especially susceptible. 

A dog might become destructive just because he’s got nothing better to do. 

Many dog owners struggle to keep their canine companion occupied while they’re out at work all day, but there are lots of great toys that help increase a dog’s mental stimulation when you can’t be home. 

These toys encourage interaction between pet and owner, too—not just independent play! 

Below are 2 great indoor dog toys for destructive dogs. Check them out on Amazon.


Buy on Amazon

Buy on Amazon


Give your dog a chew toy that will keep him entertained.
Rover really enjoys soft, plush toys with a squeaker in them. 

For some reason, the sound of a crinkly water bottle sends the majority of dogs into a frenzy. 

The crushing of the bones is also a terrific way to wear out your canine companion.

Give em Treats in West Paw Zogoflex Tux Treat Dispensing Dog Chew Toy to keep your pooch engaged.

 Hide The Treats

The simplest way to play indoors with your dog is to use treats. Instead of giving a food treat directly, hide it around the house and encourage your dog to sniff out where it is.

 The temptation will be too much for them! 

Try setting up a series of different hiding spots for treats around the house (underneath books, inside socks, in paper bags) 

so that you have a variety of options when playing in future.

Have A Puzzle Party

Dogs that spend too much time inside might seem a little stir crazy, but an indoor dog will play when you least expect it. 

For example, we had a friend stop by one day and our beagle took off running down one hallway, then another, disappearing into rooms—just looking for something to do. 

Well-meaning friends came over, and though they tried their best to entertain him through hide-and-seek games and throw treats across rooms, she seemed bored with them after just a few minutes of these new distractions. 

It wasn’t until my daughter brought out a jigsaw puzzle that our dog’s interest was captured completely.


Play Hide And Seek with your dog, Trust me they Love it!

The popularity of board games is on a steady rise, so it’s no surprise that dog owners are looking for new and interesting activities to play with their dogs. 

Puzzle toys can be fun for both you and your dog, but puzzles are a little less interactive. 

If you’re really itching for some good old-fashioned fun between you and your pup, try one of these 10 indoor games perfect for spending time together! 

Just make sure that each game is suitable and safe for dogs before playing. 

No matter which game you play first, remember that some breeds can get overexcited or over-stimulated very easily — especially those bred as working dogs — so pick games accordingly.

Teach Them Some Tricks!

If you’re going to spend a lot of time home alone, be sure to teach your dog some tricks. 

A little redirection can go a long way when it comes to keeping Fido entertained. 

Doggy yoga( with a dog yoga mat) and dog-safe obstacle courses are also great, low-cost indoor activities that will help your pooch have fun while you work! 

And don’t forget: It doesn’t have to be all business, all of the time.

Keep Them Cool In The Summer Heat

Dogs have very short attention spans. 

A dog that has been playing fetch for a few minutes might be so bored that he won’t even acknowledge you when you walk in, but giving him a fun game of tug with a blanket can keep him engaged for hours. 

Look online for some simple DIY games, or purchase something like our interactive puzzle feeder. All dogs need physical and mental stimulation in order to be happy and healthy so play indoor games as often as possible!

Interactive Puzzle Games For Dogs

You can buy dog-friendly indoor puzzle games or make one yourself. For example, you can put some treats in a paper bag and tape it shut. 

If you want to get really fancy, you can draw a picture of a hot dog on it! Dogs love chasing bags, so they’ll likely enjoy playing a game of Catch The Bag. 

It’s important that you play games that are based around getting rewards like toys and treats rather than those based around dominance (like tug-of-war). 

Dominance is an important concept for dogs, but if left unchecked in human-dog relationships, your dog may become aggressive over time

The game of shells. 

Dog treats are used in the same way as in the casino game. Prepare two cups by placing a reward beneath each of them–while your dog is watching, of course–and allowing him to discover the goodies. 

Rover has become an expert at this game, so I play with three cups and don’t allow him to see where I conceal the money. 

Start off easy so that your dog has a chance to “win,” but progressively increase the degree of difficulty!

Using a food toy, to feed your pooch Treats

It is likely that your dog may get exhausted while attempting to obtain her food, which will also prevent her from gobbling down her meal at the same time.

Rover has been eating out of food toys since he was eight weeks old, and we have no plans to stop. 

His first item was a plastic bottle with the opening balanced on it. 

Our plan had been to stuff food into the bottle, balance the bottle on its neck, and encourage him to knock the bottle over with her snout. 

While he was consuming whatever had fallen out, we would reassemble the bottle.

Later, he proceeded to more complex toys, such as the Kong Wobbler and Treat Dispensing toy which required her to move the object about her room in order to consume the whole meal.

Party with a loose leash. 

Just as with remain, you’ll need to practise loose leash walking when out and about, but to keep yourself occupied while inside, raise the ante on your abilities by increasing the difficulty. 

Go up and down stairs, make sharp 90-degree turns, navigate obstacles (ottomans, the cat, etc.), start and stop abruptly – all while clicking and treating.

 Be enthusiastic in your praise, and your dog will believe you’re having a great time. Rover’s favourite indoor game is this one!

Make a movie about your doggo- I love this

You’ve undoubtedly seen dozens (hundreds?) of videos of dogs doing tricks on the internet. 

Some of them are rather spectacular in their own right. Others, on the other hand… 

“Huh,” I’m sure you’ve thought to yourself. “That’s something my dog can do.” So let’s put together a video! 

Allow your dog to do all of the tricks in his repertoire. 

Here’s why Videoing your doggo is such a good thing: 

  • It keeps you both occupied and working together, of course, but even if you never intend to share it with anybody, you will have paperwork that you can review attentively to determine what you and your dog need to do to better your relationship and your relationship with your dog. 
  • You may observe, for example, that every time you cue a sit, you take a minute step forwards (this is something I was utterly guilty of…) that you would have never noticed if you were not filming yourself. Now that you’ve seen the video, you understand! 
  • You may also devise a strategy for making improvements.

Find it game with your dog

Rover’s favourite game by a long shot. 

Allow your dog to get a whiff of a delicious treat. Allow for firm sit/wait or stay behaviour, then conceal the reward in a location where he will not be able to see it. 

“Find it,” you may tell him to go. Increase the difficulty of the task gradually – put it somewhere he can’t see it, have him wait in another room, swap from a stinky reward to his favourite toy, and so on. 

Rover, on the other hand, is completely smitten with this game. His toys are becoming more difficult to conceal, to the point that I’m running out of places to put them…

Here you go!, you have just learned how to tire out a dog effectively!

Hopefully, you’ll find that at least a few of these suggestions are effective in getting your dog to tyre out the next time you’re confined indoors.

  • Remember to choose an activity that is appropriate for your dog’s temperament.
  • Keep an eye on your dog. Keep him with a toy or chew until you are certain that it is completely safe for him to be left alone in a hotel room or camper.
  • Understand the boundaries of your dog. Playing catch on the stairwell with a senior dog that has joint concerns is not the greatest idea for him. 
  • A dog that smashes toys may be more suited to trick training than a dog who chews on a sock filled with stuffing, for example.

Most importantly, remember to have fun! 

Perhaps you’ll discover that your dog is equally content to spend time with you indoors or outside, exploring the mountains or swimming in the ocean.