My Pet Dog Plays Motion Games

I have a one-year-old Labrador retriever named Bailey who absolutely loves playing motion games. Ever since he was a puppy, he’s been full of energy and eager to play. I quickly learned that mentally stimulating games are his favorite way to burn off some of that youthful exuberance.

About a month after I first brought Bailey home, I introduced him to a simple motion game using his favorite squeaky tennis ball. I would present the ball, give the cue “watch it”, then toss the ball a short distance and encourage him to fetch it. As soon as he brought the ball back, I would take it and toss it again in a different direction. Bailey caught on very quickly that this was a fun game of chase, catch, and return the ball over and over.

After Bailey mastered the basic game, I started making it more challenging. I would throw the ball further distances, incorporate obstacles he had to run around, and even roll the ball unpredictably so he had to pounce and catch it. Bailey got so good at this game that anytime he saw me pick up a tennis ball, he would get into a play stance and stare intently, waiting for it to be thrown.

In addition to the fetch game, I also bought Bailey some interactive dog toys that keep him entertained for hours. His favorite is a puzzle ball that dispenses treats when rolled around. He has to figure out how to manipulate the ball with his paws and nose to make the treats come out. I also got him a tug toy with ropes and knots that he has to pull in different directions to unravel it and find the treats hidden inside.

The great thing about motion games for dogs is that they provide physical and mental exercise at the same time. Bailey loves dashing after a ball or toy and then has to use his brain to solve a puzzle or challenge to get the reward. These types of games are the perfect outlet for his high energy and intelligence. I make sure to engage him in these activities every day to keep him fit, focused, and having fun.

Now that Bailey is full grown, he still craves his motion games as much as when he was a puppy. The difference is I can really give him a workout now by engaging him longer or introducing more complex rules and commands. However, the joy and enthusiasm he gets from these games is just the same. I love seeing how proud he looks trotting back to me with the ball or conquered toy in his mouth. Motion games will likely always be a part of our daily playtime routine. It’s a mutually enjoyable way for me to exercise my energetic, smart dog both physically and mentally.