40 minute meals

Maplewood Dog

Keeping Tom and Zora entertained is taking a bit of creativity. We walk, we train, and then they dejectedly lie around the office while the humans work.

As a consolation for their humans being on the computer for so long, we’ve been experimenting with meal time enrichment.

Currently 3 puzzle toys and a not yet mowed lawn in our fenced yard has been a winner.

Black retriever in the grass, black and white corgi in the background, each dog with a purple food toy

Thankfully both of my dogs enjoy the puzzle of puzzle toys. Rather than try to chew through them, they both in their own particular way get invested in the puzzle of how to make the toy pay a kibble.

Tom, is strategically methodical. He tries endless variations, feet here, nose there, shove that, push this, until bingo a kibble or two for his efforts.

Black retriever in the grass with a purple food toy

Zora is more wildcard. She’ll push the toy around the yard, but needs a high rate of payout to keep at it. Having 3 different styles though helps to keep her going.

Black and white corgi with a purple food toy next to agility jumps

When all else fails, she counts on the fact that Tom is a pacifist. Shoving herself into his success, he lets her eat his reward. He knows she probably missed a bunch in her enthusiastic half hazard approach, and he sets about to find them all.

The grass adds an interesting element of difficulty. Now, in addition to figuring out how to get the toy to release food, they also have to then find it in the grass.

40 minutes later, they tell me they’re done. Toys are all empty, grass is all clean. In we go for a post dinner nap. Eating is hard work

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