Trainer’s Corner: Food Game Activities

When you feed your dog in a bowl, you generally either have a dog who scarfs down the food very quickly or one who grazes on it throughout the day. There are so many more fun, creative ways to feed your dog that also give your dog mental and physical exercise. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Food Maze Game

This is a food activity game that children in your family can play with you and your dog. First, have your dog in a stationary position/stay, tethered, or out of the room. Then create a trail of food that goes in and around your furniture, and release your dog to find it. You can make this more challenging by then creating food stations in a trail where your dog has to do something to get the food.  See the video below for an example.

Tennis Balls To Make Meals Fun

Do you have tennis balls? How about a muffin tin? The dog muffin tin game is a fun way to feed your dog that engages his/her sense of smell. Don’t have a cupcake tin? Try filling a box with tennis balls and hiding food underneath. Watch the video below for an example.

I’d love to hear how your dog likes these games in the comments below.

Lisa Desatnik, CPDT-KA, CPBC, is a certified dog trainer (and certified parrot behavior consultant) with So Much PETential who uses and teaches the most positive strategies for changing pet behaviors. She offers individualized dog and puppy training for manners and problem issues. Learn more about her at

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