Sometimes the easiest way to keep a dog in one place is by using a stationary toy. A food filled Kong clipped to a kennel can encourage a wary dog to enter voluntarily when they are ready, and learn to feel comfortable. A toy tied down to a tether clip or sturdy piece of furniture can keep a dog working calmly away from the dinner table while you are eating. Peanut butter smeared on the bathtub or a suction cup toy can turn bath time into a treat rather than a chore. Plus, toys can be a great way to provide physical and mental exercise, enriching your dog’s life (see the Enrichment page for more on the importance of engaging your dog).
- Many rubber food fill-able toys have loops or holes making it easy to add a rope or clip for easy attachment to a kennel, eye screw tether anchor (in a baseboard/stud), sturdy piece of furniture, etc.. Here is one example for turning a Kong into a stationary toy:
(PDF version: Clip On Kong Instructions )
- Additionally, there are a number of dog toys now designed with a suction cup so they can be easily stuck onto a smooth floor, wall, or the inside of your bathtub. Check out videos demonstrating the Sticky Bone and Suction Cup Pupsicle both made by Caitec.
- Some DIY puzzle toys can also be easily modified or are heavy duty enough to work as stationary toys. For example, you can mount empty plastic bottle on a rod such that the dog must spin the bottle around the rod to allow treats to fall out. Here is a lovely detailed 4-part set of videos on how, with the help of a 2 year old child, you too can build one (skip to the fourth video if you just want to see the final product):
Making A Platic Bottle Dog Treat Puzzle Toy by Fixed1t Rescue Dogs: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.