How to Keep German Shepherd Busy?

September 13, 2023

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A  German Shepherd got a job as a waiter, wonder why? Because he was a natural fetcher! And also because he did not prefer sitting idle. German Shepherds are bred to be energetic and work hard. That’s why they are one of the best working dogs.

Being immensely intelligent, they also need mental stimulation to stay happy and healthy. They can become bored if they don't get enough exercise. And boredom can make your GSD turn to less charming activities like chewing, excessive barking, and digging. Let’s explore some of the options we have for your beloved dog and find answers to how to keep German Shepherd busy?

How to know your German Shepherd is bored?

German Shepherds, like any intelligent and active breed, can indeed experience boredom. To identify whether your dog is bored, you can watch out for these telltale signs:

  • Chewing on your shoes, sofas, or other items instead of chew toys
  • Excessive barking at you as if demanding attention
  • Digging your lawn and disrupting the household
  • Becoming withdrawn or aggressive
  • Appearing lazy or disinterested

If your German Shepherd exhibits any of these symptoms, it's crucial to take action to avoid boredom and keep up their well being. 

How do you keep your German Shepherd mentally stimulated?

German Shepherds perform at their peak when they find solutions to problems, carry out tasks for their owners, and feel useful to the pack. Due to their working background, mental stimulation can help them with not getting bored. 

  1. German Shepherd Puzzle toys: 

Toys that stimulate the mind, like puzzles or toys that release treats, are a great way to keep your German Shepherd occupied and mentally engaged. It's crucial to take your German Shepherd's age, size, and level of activity into account when selecting a puzzle toy for them. It's also crucial to pick a toy that can withstand your dog's chewing and is made of sturdy materials. 

  1. Mentally stimulating activities: 

Your German Shepherd can stay mentally sharp and avoid boredom by participating in mentally stimulating activities like Food puzzles, Scavenger Hunts, Bubble Chase and Pop, Playing tug or interactive toys. They love to play. Check out our article for German Shepherd Puppies- How to play with a German Shepherd puppy to engage them in activities while keeping their age in mind.

  1. Daily long walks:

Dogs love to go out on walks. By taking your German Shepherd for daily walks, you can keep them mentally stimulated while also getting them some physical exercise and exposing them to new sounds, sights, and smells. If possible, take them out on long walks as well so they are introduced to a new environment and all of their senses get involved.

  1. Sniffing games

German Shepherds have a keen sense of smell and playing games that involve nose work can be mentally stimulating. Allow them to use their sense of smell to find treats or toys that are hidden around the house or yard. Remember to not make it too challenging at first. However, you can easily advance this game to be harder as your German Shepherd gets better.

  1. Socialization

The most effective type of mental stimulation for any dog may be socialization. Your German Shepherd will benefit from socialization and interaction by attending doggie daycare or scheduling playdates with other dogs. Your puppy will become friendlier, more approachable, better behaved, and overall much happier as a result.

  1. Training sessions: 

GSDs are highly trainable dogs. Regular training sessions exercise their minds as they learn new commands and tricks. It also strengthens their obedience. It's possible to make this training more challenging with a little imagination. For instance, for adult dogs, you can ask them to wait in another room or make them wait longer while they are sitting. Here is how you can Train your German Shepherd to find things.

What to do with your German Shepherd while at work?

German Shepherds are extremely sociable and active dogs, so leaving one alone while you're at work can be difficult. When left alone for extended periods of time they may develop separation anxiety. They may even start acting irrationally and destructively out of boredom.To ensure their welfare and keep your German Shepherd occupied, there are a number of options:

  1. Doggy daycare

Consider signing up your German Shepherd for a reputable dog daycare center. As a result, they can socialize, exercise, and engage in daily interactions with both people and other dogs. This way you won’t be worried about leaving your German Shepherd alone and  their well-being. With ample research, you can help to find a dog daycare that is the right fit for your German Shepherd.

  1. Hire a dog walker:

Hiring a professional dog walker to visit your home and take your lovely dog  for a walk during the day will save you time and keep your German Shepherd busy. They get to exercise, be mentally challenged, and have a chance to do their business. If you are unable to afford doggie daycare or don't want to leave your dog alone all day, this is a good option.

  1. Comfortable environment: 

Create a safe and secure space for your German Shepherd at home, such as a room or an enclosed yard, that has been dog-proofed. Make sure it is risk-free and offers them access to water, a relaxing spot, some toys, or chewy treats. You can also check our article on How To Keep German Shepherds Cool in Summer? To give them a comfortable environment during the summer heat.

  1. Pet sitters:

If possible, consider hiring a pet sitter to check in on your German Shepherd during the working day. They can feed them, keep them company, and take them on walks or play dates. If you only have a part-time job or if a friend or family member is willing to help, this is a good option.

  1. Set up a Webcam:

Install a camera or monitor in the space where your German Shepherd spends their time. By doing so, you can check on them from a distance to make sure they're okay and not showing any signs of distress. Your dog might need some time to get used to the webcam. If they appear scared or agitated at first, don't give up, rather give them some time to acclimate.

  1. After-work activities:

Exercise and mental stimulation before and after work will ensure that your German Shepherd is calm, balanced, and relaxed while you're away. Play fetch or frisbee or take them out on walks so that you can balance out their daily activities and the time they spend resting inside the house.

  1. Consider talking to a professional: 

To develop a thorough plan for handling your German Shepherd's schedule while you are at work, think about speaking with a qualified dog trainer or behaviorist. You can also call us at (844) 844-3323 or visit our website if you have any questions.

Is there more you should know about?

Introducing your German Shepherd to longer intervals of alone time gradually may be helpful. Start with brief ones and gradually extend the duration. This can aid in their adjustment and make them feel more at ease when left alone.

Try different things and see what your German Shepherd likes to find out what works best for them. With the tips given above you can keep your dog happy and healthy while you are away at work!

Please be aware that every dog is unique, so it's crucial to consider your German Shepherd's specific needs and seek advice from a qualified dog trainer or behaviorist for tailored advice if needed. You can reach out to us at any time and we’ll be happy to guide you through the process.

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