Key Points Owning a dog can be stressful and a dog owner’s stress can be detected by their dog. A dog owner’s stress can be reduced by a calm d...
9 Indoor Activities To Help Your Teacup Chihuahua Overcome Anxiety
A Teacup Chihuahua is a smaller variant of a Chihuahua, which belongs to the American Kennel Club Toy Breed category. They are a tiny or micro-sized Chihuahua. However, don't be fooled by their size as they make up for their lack of stature with personality. These feisty puppies will let you know exactly what they are thinking. They are excellent companion dogs for the right pet owner; since they are little, they do not take up much room.
Keeping your teacup Chihuahua entertained can be a challenge when he is anxious. In addition, thinking of new ways to engage your dog might be more stressful. In this article, you will find 9 indoor activities to help your teacup Chihuahua overcome anxiety.
Benefits of Indoor Activities
Getting outdoors with your Teacup Chihuahua isn't always an option. So how can you keep your dog engaged, active, and happy when both of you are inside? Activities and play will keep your pet busy. Dogs need activity and play to maintain physical and mental health which will result in reduced stress. In addition, games, training, and toys may help avoid nasty habits like chewing on your belongings, excessive barking, or leaving a puddle on your carpet.
Exercise and other playful activities keep your Teacup Chihuahua fit and limber throughout life and may boost his chances of living a longer life. The more energetic your dog is on a daily basis, the longer you will be able to enjoy your time together. Exercise is also essential for your dog's mental wellness. It may help lessen undesirable behavioral issues such as excessive chewing, licking, digging, barking, and anxiety-related dog behaviors. Moreover, developing this practice will help create trust and understanding between you, your puppy, and their surroundings.
A tired dog is often a better disciplined, calm, focused, and eager-to-please sort of dog. Furthermore, regular exercise benefits you as much as them by keeping you active and lowering stress levels while coping with their destructive behavior.
Physical exercise for your little dog is the first significant component of preventing canine obesity and should also be carried out even if it is being managed. Obesity is one of the most frequent disorders in dogs and may be easily avoided by leading an active lifestyle. Not to mention that continuing to exercise may save you money on future medical expenditures. If you're concerned about your dog's weight, take them to their veterinarian so you can discuss the optimal weight range for your dog. Suppose your dog's weight is an issue. In that case, your doctor may recommend a health plan to manage it, such as what their food should look like and what kind of physical activity would be best for your dog's weight reduction journey.
It's great fun to play with your Teacup Chihuahua. It is a simple approach to improve both your and your dog's stress-related attitude. Spending time with your pet may be calming, and some studies have shown that it may help reduce sadness and separation anxiety symptoms. Thus, including a few quick five-minute play sessions with your dog every day might significantly influence your and your pet's general attitude.
Following are 9 indoor activities to help your teacup Chihuahua overcome anxiety
1. Hide and Seek
Hide and seek is a fun game that can also be used to train your Teacup Chihuahua. This game is great for dogs like Labrador retrievers and hunting dogs, but any dog may play. Your dog must comprehend the instructions "sit/stay," "come," and "find." These are the primary commands in this game. If your dog does not yet comprehend these instructions, playing this game for the first time with them might be an excellent teaching opportunity. Teaching your furry friend this entertaining game is a terrific method for them to learn while also offering mental stimulation. You can also give your Teacup calming inserts, which will help them relax and stay focused. It will give them a better wat to cope with stressful situations.
First, with the "place" command, lead your dog to a room or his bed, then say "sit." Get your dog's attention, then move away from him or her while teaching them to sit and stay. To begin, make sure your canine companion can still see you as you walk away. After your dog has sat for a few seconds while you walk away, move back toward them and treat them for sitting and remaining. Give your four-legged pet a stroke on the head or a hug. You can also give him a little dog treat if desired, or if they are not motivated by food, their favorite toy. Eventually, replace treat-giving with a vocal expression of gratitude and a loving embrace or pat for "staying".
Next, place your dog with his back to a wall or piece of furniture. "Sit and remain," you say. Move to the other side of the entrance or doorway so your dog cannot see you. Your dog may glance around for you, but just ensure he remains put. Continue to use the sit and stay commands as needed to ensure your Teacup Chihuahua knows what you want them to do. You are out of your dog's sight at this point in the training. If your dog remains seated while you leave, return and treat them for following your directions. You may need to repeat this step a few times before your dog understands how to consistently "stay."
When you believe your dog is ready, repeat step 2 and then vanish from his line of sight. Go into hiding and be quiet. Once you're hidden, call your dog's name, then say "Come," "Find me," or "Come find me!" When first teaching your dog this new activity, don't make it too difficult for your dog to discover you. Make your hiding area a little more difficult for him over time. If they are still unable to locate your hiding spot, keep a handful of kibble or goodies with you so that your dog's sense of scent can locate you.
2. Indoor Fetch
Playing fetch is enjoyable and beneficial to both you and your Teacup Chihuahua. However, not all dogs pick it up right away. Some dogs don't understand the fetch command at all, while others have an inherent desire to pursue objects. Your pet may like chasing but not retrieving. It may take time and effort to teach them to retrieve, but it will result in greater activity and connection between you and your dog.
If your dog doesn't comprehend fetching or seems uninterested in retrieving objects, start with the basics like putting treats inside of a toy, introducing the toy with a tug of war game, or teasing your Chihuahua to gain his attention. Some popular fetch toys include squeaker balls, plush dog toys, discs and flyers, rubber bumpers, and rope toys.
Once the dog shows interest in the toy, the game of fetch may begin. Begin by tossing the toy a few feet. As your dog learns, express your joy so that they want to satisfy you by playing more. Increase the distance you toss the item gradually until your dog realizes the joy of pursuing something. During the learning process, it is critical to remain patient. If your Teacup Chihuahua does not grasp the game as easily as you would like, stay calm and don’t get frustrated. Don't give up. Just take a break and try again another day.
If your dog enjoys chasing the item but will not return it, try a game that teaches dogs to return a toy. Maintain two toys in your hands. The first one should be thrown. Once the dog has reached the toy, entice them with the second toy. At this moment, the dog might return with the first toy. Even if the dog drops the first toy, toss the second one in a different direction. Then get the first toy while he gets the second. Continue the routine of tossing one object and then tempting with another. The dog will almost certainly get too excited to drop the item they've collected and will race back to you with it.
Repeat this activity until your dog returns one toy to you in anticipation of pursuing another. After that, they may be ready to play fetch with one toy at a time. Finally, you may gradually incorporate orders such as "drop it" and educate your dog on what you want them to do. Doing this will stimulate thinking, and build up focus and concentration in your dog. Sitting idle and doing nothing can bore your dog and may be a cause of depression. However, playing fetch is a great mood booster that will make your dog happy and may relieve his anxiety.
3. DIY Treat Dispensers
Treats are something dogs are attracted to, the most. They will forget everything if you offer them their favorite treat. Hence, treats can turn out to be a distraction and mood lifter for anxious dogs. Cardboard boxes make excellent destructible treat dispensers. Small treats or soft goodies may be packed inside empty toilet paper tubes or paper towel rolls. You can spread peanut butter or cream cheese on the interior of the cardboard tube, for example. Your dog must lick the reward out while keeping the tube from rolling away or being squeezed flat. Additionally, you can also offer your Teacup the flavorful Zen chews which may help your dog feel relaxed and stress-free.
Fold-down the ends of the tube to make your dog have to tear through the cardboard to get to the treats inside. Freeze the tube and its ingredients before offering it to your dog for a longer-lasting treat. This process will make eating more fun, and keep your puppy entertained.
4. Doggy Ball Pit
If your Teacup Chihuahua likes playing hide-and-seek, this toy will significantly increase the challenge. You just need a plastic kiddie pool and a lot of balls. First, fill the kiddie pool with the balls, then cover with kibble or treats. As your dog travels through the balls to gather the food, the balls, and therefore the goodies, will change locations, keeping your dog interested for an extended period of time and he will forget about the stressful situation that was bothering him.
5. Grooming Session
Although your dog will not find grooming as enjoyable as a game of tug, it is something that must be done regularly. A grooming session will work as a relaxation session that will help your dog feel calm and secure while you cuddle and clean him. When your dog's nails get too long, you should cut them carefully. The dogs must be washed, bathed, and may need their teeth brushed as well.
Some dogs handle grooming better than others, and the more positive reinforcement you use, the simpler it will become. Don't be hesitant to lavish your dog with rewards during grooming sessions; you want to ensure that grooming habits are associated with a pleasurable experience.
6. Obstacle Training
This one is simple since you can utilize everyday household items to make the course as simple or complex as you desire. For example, you could use cardboard boxes for your Teacup Chihuahua to crawl through, chairs for them to maneuver under, and even books to leap over.
You may construct a simple DIY dog jump out of household objects, or you can design your training and obstacle course out of cones and poles.
Teach your dog to jump by keeping him on a leash and preventing him from going around an obstacle. Give each leap a unique command, such as "big jump." Approach the jump quickly, and your dog will usually hop over it. Give plenty of praise and rewards. You may progressively increase the height of the jumps as your dog grows confident.
Tunnels are often a simple hurdle to teach. Begin with a short tunnel your dog can see through to the other side. Next, station someone on the other end with treats or a favorite toy. Bring your dog to the tunnel, say "tunnel," and have your helper start calling your dog and providing goodies. If your dog is reluctant, toss some goodies inside. Most dogs will soon pass through to the opposite side. As your dog gains confidence, you may move to longer and even curved tunnels. This activity will make your Teacup forget about what's bothering them and it will work as a distraction.
7. Calming Dog Toys
To distract your Teacup Chihuahua, you can engage them in some indoor activity such as calming dog puzzles or toys that will help them relax. You can play along which will also strengthen your bond with your Teacup Chihuahua. Additionally, you can offer your dog his favorite meals or cool, crisp water from Calming Fountain Plus +.
8. Teach Your Dog To Chase Bubbles
If your Teacup Chihuahua isn't used to chasing bubbles, start blowing a few at once. If they aren't interested, try pointing at them. If that doesn't work, ask a buddy to join you in playing 'bubble in the middle.' When your dog realizes that the bubbles are supposed to be played with, he will catch on.
You may make your supply using dish detergent and water after having a bottle and wand. Some people add corn syrup to help the bubbles linger longer. Homemade bubble recipes are safe for your dog; just make sure they don't get into the mixture. After they've finished playing, be sure to clean their face with a moist cloth. Their eyes may be irritated by bubble combinations. This activity will help get your dog out from the stressful situation and make him feel relaxed and distracted.
9. Massage Therapy
Use a short, soft backstroke to introduce your dog to canine massages. Stroke up and down each side of your dog's spine with very mild pressure, beginning at the back of the head. Keep your hands off the bone. For dogs, this form of back massage is soothing and relaxing. It is an excellent dog massage for anxiety, especially for dogs that are afraid of human contact.
For a rescue dog, touch can be healing and helps him regain trust. However, the majority of dogs appreciate even the simplest ear massage. With a little practice, you can give your pet a soothing, therapeutic ear massage. Begin this basic massage by placing your thumb on the inside side of your dog's ear, towards the base of the ear flap, and your index finger outside the ear. Then, slowly stroke out towards the end of the ear with mild pressure, finishing with a soft pull. Calming cuddle beds might also help your Teacup Chihuahua feel relaxed.
It's also important to keep an eye on your dog's body language. A dog enjoying the massage will stretch or lean into your hands, and be relaxed to the point of falling asleep. On the other hand, an uneasy dog may study you attentively, try to escape, and may even snarl. Stop the massage and give your pet some space if he dislikes it.
Indoors don't have to be boring. Play dog sports and games with your dog or teach them a new trick. Interactive play is very beneficial to dogs' general health and well-being. You don't need a lot of expensive toys or access to the outdoors to keep your dog occupied and happy; all you need is a little time and devotion.
Playing entertaining games encourages cooperative conduct, alleviates dogs' boredom, and helps overcome severe anxiety issues. Activities may be used as a successful training strategy by teaching retrieve, recall, object carrying, and basic obedience commands. Encourage your dog to participate in healthy play from a young age. Finally, many fantastic dog toys on the market, like puzzles, squeakers, and fetch toys, foster agility and mental problem-solving. You should choose toys and activities that are appropriate for your dog's age and tastes.
It is however, essential to remember that anxiety affects every dog differently, and thus measures should be taken that suit your dog’s behavior and personality.