So life is currently all out of sorts and a bit scary. We have been using the extra time at home to work on our endless to do list, hopefully helping us to keep a bit of normality and calm. It can be a very anxious time for everyone and I have found being creative, writing and working on the shop side of things to be a great distraction and quite comforting. I don’t want to spend too much time talking about the Corona Virus, but just to quickly say hopefully some of our blog posts will give you tips or ideas about things to do with your doggos to keep busy! Or at the very least give you a quick read and some nice pictures to look at!..
Our dogs at least have been benefiting from the madness in some way, with the hoomans being at home a lot more! However one allowed walk a day isn’t always enough for some dogs but there are other great ways to stimulate, knacker or stop them chewing the sofa while we are all at home and potentially trying to get some work done. A classic canine enrichment method is stuffable treat toys like the Kong range, Lickimats, ridged toys and treat dispensers which are all a great way to get fab natural treats in and help dogs coats, teeth and lil brains. We usually always freeze them to make the activity last as long as possible.
I follow a few American and Canadian doggo accounts on Instagram and some commonly used treat fillers would be apple sauce, pumpkin purée and mango purée. Not items you would see as often in shops here and having plenty of time and energy to kill ourselves… we decided to use up some slightly old and forgotten apples to make our own apple sauce. Apples are quite sweet so a small amount as a treat is loved by most dogs!
We stewed up the apples with a few splashes (technical measurement term) of apple cider vinegar. Amazing for humans and class for dogs too! It’s a natural wormer, can soothe digestive issues and has antiseptic properties - it’s wonderous! Once the apples had stewed we mixed in some honey and mashed it all up before putting into a jar to be kept in the fridge, homemade apple goop complete! Ps. you don’t have to add in apple cider vinegar we just wanted to cram in as much goodness as possible.
Today we smushed up coconut oil, our apple goop, kibble and some Naturo wet food,
slathered it into the Kongs, toys, matts and then froze for an hour or more. The dogs always go bananas for them and the whole process is weirdly therapeutic from start to finish. I’m not a very good cook so knowing that it can’t go wrong, does not have to look good and you have a very happy and content recipient of your food prep is a great feeling!..
For very aesthetically pleasing Kong ideas go and follow @bindisbucketlist on Insta. There is also a brilliant Canine Enrichment group page on Facebook for lots of DIY ideas and tips; https://www.facebook.com/groups/canineenrichment
Barkthink.com has some fantastic ideas, tips and advice on how to get the best out of a Kong toy. We find the big kong brilliant for Onyx, who is happy to work away at it and they do a mini puppy size which is perfect for dinky Iggy, Honey is a bit of a lazy princess so she doesn’t always finish a kong but we find a Lickimat works really well for her. http://barkthink.com/get-stuffed-over-50-ways-to-fill-your-kong/
Thanks for reading and stay safe,
Gem and the Hounds.