Friday, September 26, 2014

FitDog Friday: Find the Treat to Chase Away Rainy Day Blues

The beginning of autumn is bringing lots of rain to Chewytown, which means rainy day blues for this pup. 


Chewy's fur soaks up mud very easily, so we try to keep walks to a minimum when it's raining. To keep him from tracking muddy pawprints all over the house, I have him sit and stay on his absorbent mat. (This one is an Ikea bathmat - it was only $10 and comes in a variety of colors. It's a much better deal than most doormats marketed specifically for doggies, and probably works just as well!)

Rocking the scraggly, wet belly fur look

The lack of long walks can make Chewy very hyper, and one of the ways we burn off all that energy is by playing Find the Treat in the house. Chewy thoroughly enjoys playing Find the Treat because there might be a nibble of food around every corner! 

To start, I have Chewy wait somewhere while I hide treats out of his view. This is a great opportunity to practice the stay command, as you can have your dog stay in another room so you don't need to worry about him/her sneaking a peek at where you're placing the yums. Just make sure they don't stealthily come out and steal the treats before you're done!

Waiting patiently

I only hide a couple treats at a time and space them out around the house so that Chewy gets more exercise for less food. Chewy is very food motivated, so he pretty much runs from one spot to the next. Sometimes I like to just wander around with the treats so that the smell wafts around everywhere, leading Chewy on a wild sniff hunt. To keep the search fun, I place some treats in plain sight, some under furniture or dog toys, and some hidden behind table legs, doors or his water bowl. When I'm done hiding treats, I return to Chewy and release him from his stay. He usually knows what's going on, but telling him to "Go find it!" always does the trick. The first few times, you might have to lead your dog to the treats so they understand the game. When we first started playing, I would let Chewy sniff the treats before I hid them so he'd know what he was to search for.

And he's off!

Chewy runs off sniffing the air, the floor, around every corner...

Downward dog under the doggy bed

A quick nose shove to get under the toy

Sometimes Chewy gets distracted by other food smells, but he quickly gets back on track.

Tomatoes not for me?

When Chewy has found them all, I tell him "No more" so he knows. Sometimes he doesn't believe me, though, and has to do another thorough search of the house before settling down. He is definitely a wishful thinker.

For a low calorie option, sometimes I use baby carrots or green beans, and I even cut them up into little pieces. They are less fragrant than meaty treats, but Chewy typically has no trouble finding them all. We always play multiple rounds at a time because just one is never satisfying for Chewy the food-lover, and it also gets him running around more. 


Playing Find the Treat always chases away those rainy day blues in our house!

We are joining the FitDog Friday hop hosted by My GBGV Life,
SlimDoggy and To Dog with Love.


  1. Tons of great indoor options to stay fit. Thanks for sharing!

  2. That bathmat idea is awesome! We also like to play hide and seek with treats!! :D

  3. Oh yeah, this is one of our favorite games. Lucky for us, we don't have to deal with rain, so we get to play outside. SO there's lots of exercise involved. Glad you joined the Hop!

  4. I would be willing to bet it doesn't matter whether he sees you hide them or not as he is using his nose and not his eyes to find them. Mom is always amazed how we can stand in front of a nose work hide but don't signal it until we actually smell it. Fun game, though for bad weather days.

  5. Mr. N's fur soaks up mud as well but if we didn't walk when it rains, he wouldn't get walked for 7-8 months of the year. The joys of living in a rainy climate. We just bundle up and go and he gets lots of half-baths during the "season."

  6. Barley loves this game, too! Barley refuses to walk in the rain (which is okay with me since I hate cleaning up muddy paw prints), so this is one of our go-to rainy day activities, too :)

  7. It's supposed to be a rainy day here in AZ - I'll have to try that game.

    Also, wonderful idea on the mat! I have never thought of that.

    Monty and Harlow

  8. That last picture is classic! We love "find it" games inside and out but the problems definitely begin when the games end because the dogs disagree that the game has to end!

  9. Haha! Yes, my dog Haley does exactly what Chewy does when you say "no more". She has to make sure and checks around just in case.