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Don’t leave dogs blue

Monday, 21st January, 2013

“I’m bored,’ say the kids during school holidays, but for dogs that feeling comes when the children go back to school and you go back to work. “I’m bored,’ say the kids during school holidays, but for dogs that feeling comes when the children go back to school and you go back to work.

As the school holidays come to an end, spare a thought for pet dogs that will miss playing with their owners and must readjust to an empty household.

Leading veterinarian Dr Rod Straw said that idleness in domestic dogs was an issue overlooked by many pet owners.

"It is important for a dog's mental and physical wellbeing that they receive regular stimulation," he said.

"In the same way that humans need to be entertained, dogs need to be kept active and challenged or they will quickly become bored."

Dr Straw said there were some simple measures owners can take to ease the stress and boredom of their animals.

Puzzles and toys are recommended as a great way to keep your dog busy.

Another is chewing bones, which can also provide dental benefits by helping to control plaque.

Treasure hunts for small amounts of food hidden around the yard are also a good idea, said Dr Straw.

He said that morning walks were also beneficial to burn off excess energy and evening games to give your canine friend something to look forward to.

He also suggested "play dates" with other dogs and training.

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