A dog wearing a Santa hatThe long months of winter can have most of us wanting to curl up on the couch. Add to that the busyness of the holidays, frequent travel, and inclement weather, and keeping up with your pet’s exercise needs can be a challenge.

Thankfully your friends at The Bluffs Pet Clinic have some fun, exciting, and easy winter activities for your pet that will have you both up and moving. Let’s take a look at some of our favorite winter activities for pets – and you, too!

Fun Winter Activities for Pets to Keep Everyone Active

Like to get out during those cabin fever days? We understand. Your pet may also be feeling the brunt of less activity and exercise. Despite how busy we get, our pet companions require the same level of interaction, exercise, and socialization as they do any other time of year. To get you thinking creatively, here are some ideas for winter exercise.

  1. Bundle up and look at lights – This is a time-honored tradition for the whole family. Bundle up your furry pal (along with your kids, if applicable) and go for a fun walk around the neighborhood, taking in all of the sights and wonders of the holiday lights. Just be sure that your pet is dressed for the temperatures and you have some reflective lights on their collar or leash, for better visibility.
  2. Use some mind-bending games – Challenging your pet is not exactly excellent fitness, but it does provide mental enrichment that every fur friend needs for good health. Food dispensing puzzles are all the rage and can help fill the time when it is too cold outside. Puzzle games for dogs like this one, or ones for cats, such as these, can help wile away the hours.
  3. Take a class together – You can choose agility (for the energetic breed), obedience, trick training, or even swimming lessons. Learning something new can be beneficial and can be a lot of fun for you and your best friend.
  4. Plan a doggie playdate – Social time is a good way to keep your pet active and alleviates some of their need for interaction. Invite some well behaved dogs over for games and fun time. Move out furniture in a rec room, or use a big garage or basement for them to run, chase, and leap.
  5. Go for a walk in the snow – Some dogs love snow. If the flakes begin to fall, don your pet with booties and a warm coat and scarf. Go wandering at the park where it is especially pretty and take some pics for fond winter memories. Just be sure to bring them home after 20-30 minutes, or when they seem tired or uncomfortable.
  6. Create an obstacle course – This is great fun for either a cat or dog. Set up obstacles, like boxes, tubes, baby gates (for leaping), tents, and other items to create a maze for your pet. Add extra shelves along walls and cat trees for your kitty friend as a way to get them more engaged and active.
  7. Go someplace new – Travel doesn’t always have to happen in the summer months. This time of year offers some great getaway deals on vacations to beaches and other exciting destinations. Look for pet friendly destinations and activities. If travel is out of the question, you can always find a new walking route or visit a friend you haven’t seen in a while to change it up.
  8. Go shopping together – Look for malls that allow pets on leashes and go for a walk inside. Pet supply stores and other pet-oriented businesses allow you to bring well behaved pets. For the win, go shopping for your fur friend. Buy new toys, clothes, treats and other items to make them happy.

We hope these eight ideas for winter activities for pets inspired you to come up with eight more! If we can answer any questions about winter activities for pets, or if you would like to schedule an appointment, please call us