From a scientific perspective, there is no concrete evidence that dogs can perceive emotions that are classified by humans. Dogs do not have individual consciousness or inner thoughts like humans, but it doesn’t mean that dogs never experience negative emotions.
We can easily observe feelings of anxiety or signs of depression through our dog’s body language and actions. By reading this article, you will get the answer for “ How do I know if my dog is bored?” and some tips to erase your pet’s boredom. Let’s go!
How to know if a dog is bored? – Common behavioral signals and boredom busters.
For a dog, the owner is its main source of entertainment. If we don’t take the time to play with them, they are going to get bored, and that sadness will lead to more serious problems. Here are some obvious signs of bored dogs:
Barking or Whining
Barking is a typical activity of dogs. They may bark at other dogs, strangers, or suspicious noises, but if your dog is standing in front of you and barking so much to get your attention, it is trying to tell you “I’m bored! play with me!”. Whining is also the case if your dog is kind of shy.
Digging or scratching
One of the reasons why your dog digs is because they are bored and looking for some entertainment. They will dig out your garden or scratch the floor to pass the time.
Even if having its own basket of toys, your dog will still look for other objects to chew on when bored, and often these will be your shoes, cushions, furniture, and more.
When the level of boredom gets too high, the dog will run like a horse without a rein. It will run around in the house and break things. If you come home from work and find a messy room, your bored dog has caused it.
Licking isn’t a typical activity of boredom, but if you see your dog constantly licking its body or you, that might be the case.
Following you around
Does your dog keep following you around? This is completely normal as we are the main source of entertainment for dogs, they will follow their owners to be with them. But this can also be a sign of boredom as the dog keeps checking you out every time you get up to do something.
Your dog may pant when it’s hot when exercising, or in pain. If not for these reasons, boredom might be the culprit.
Overeating or begging
You’re probably used to your dog begging for food every time you’re having dinner. But if you notice your pet begging more than usual, chances are he needs more entertainment.
Your dog’s sleep duration can vary depending on age and breed, but if you notice your pet is sleeping more than usual or sleeping all day, the dog is in trouble. After ruling out health problems related to sleeping a lot, the only cause left could be boredom.
Chasing other pets
If you have other pets in the house, your bored dogs will probably fight to have fun. Manifestations are that they will chase or bite other pets. You need to pay attention to your dog and stop him if the behavior becomes too aggressive.
This activity looks very funny on dogs. Looks like your canine has nothing to do but chase its tail to pass the time.
In addition to the typical signs above, there are some symptoms that tell your dog is bored like escaping, chasing shadows or light, eliminating around the house, or pulling out things. You certainly don’t want your dog to get bored, right? So, please refer to the ways below to solve your pup’s boredom.
How to stop your pup’s boredom?
If your puppy is showing these signs of boredom, energy-relieving activities will be a great solution. Ways to stop your dog’s boredom include:
Walking your dogs more regularly
This gives the dog the opportunity to engage its natural instincts to run or hunt, thereby reducing the feeling of restlessness. In addition, your dog will get a lot of benefits from a walking routine.
Buying new toys
Old toys may no longer be of interest to your furry friend, so buy them some new, more challenging toys. You can also mix the toy box often to keep the dog interested. It is also a good idea to hide a Kong around your house for the pet to find, this will improve enrichment when the dog is home alone.
Organizing some physical games
If you’re not home often to play with your dog, design a few games where the dog can play alone while you are away. You can use an auto flirt pole, or you can hide food, and toys so your dog must go and find them. These will keep the pet busier.
Creating a playground for your pup
Set aside a dedicated area for your dog to dig freely without ruining your flowers and plants. An outdoor bed will be the option for this case.
I’m not kidding! Dogs also know how to watch television like us. My dog often loves to watch the animal world, and he can sit still to watch a whole cartoon movie for one hour. Open a dog show and see how the dog reacts. If he stops and starts staring at the TV, congratulations, the dog has found a way to entertain himself.
Not only physical activities, mental activities that keep your dog thinking can help your dog fight boredom. Mental stimulation includes puzzle toys, shell games, muffin tin games, or hide-and-seek games.
Outdoor physical activities help your dog release energy very well. Some games you can play with your dog while outside of the house are racing, chasing balls, playing fetch, finding objects, or whatever activity you can think of to tire your dog out.
Sending your dog to a pet school/center
A pet school is a great place to meet other dogs who will be your dog’s future playmates. In addition, your pup will experience a variety of training methods and activities organized by the center. Although good, this method has weaknesses. I recommend you only consider this way if you are really busy and don’t have much time for your pet.
The bottom line
Dogs don’t know how to say “I’m bored” to you, but based on the aforementioned signs, you know how to tell if a puppy is bored, right? Knowing and helping your four-legged friend deal with his boredom not only help improve your relationship with your dog but also protect your home from destructive behaviors.