This post might contains affiliate links.
Dogs are notorious for being bored easily, but sometimes it’s hard to tell when your pup is just being a normal dog and when they’re actually displaying signs of boredom. If you’re not sure what to do to keep your dog entertained, check out this list of signs your dog is bored and some ideas for how to fix the issue!
- Your dog is agitated and/or destructive
- Your dog barks and destroys
- Your dog attracts your attention by any means
- Your dog is apathetic
- Your dog licks or scratches excessively
If you’re seeing signs of boredom in your dog, it’s important to take action! This article outlines the signs of boredom in dogs, what to do about it, and how to keep your pup happy and entertained.
Signs Of Boredom And Their Meaning
1. Your Dog Is Agitated And/Or Destructive
The causes of destruction are many and varied, but a dog that destroys a lot may have this behavior because of too much energy. Sometimes these are dogs that lack physical activity. They see something they want and they go for it without thinking about the consequences.
Other times, the dog is not lacking in physical activity, but instead needs more variety in entertainment activities. A dog needs to exercise his body and his head. If he’s bored, he’ll look for ways to amuse himself, and that often means destroying something in the process. The key is to find ways to burn off that excess energy so your beloved pooch doesn’t end up being the destroyer you were hoping to avoid.
That’s why it’s important to keep their minds active with different types of activities, like object retrieval or playing frisbee. Not only will this help specific learning, but it can also prevent destructive boredom behaviors like excessive mouthing or throwing themselves on cushions and shaking them. So next time your dog is looking for something to do, try teaching them a new trick or taking them for a game of fetch.
If your dog is destroying things out of boredom, there are a few things you can do to help. First, try giving him a chew bone to occupy his mouth. This will help bring some order to his life and he may find it more interesting than destroying things.
2. Your Dog Barks And Destroys
One of the most obvious signs of boredom in dogs is destructive behavior. If your normally well-behaved pooch suddenly starts chewing up your furniture or tearing up your carpet, it’s likely that he’s bored and in need of some extra attention.
Another telltale sign of a bored dog is incessant barking. If your dog is normally quiet but suddenly starts barking nonstop, it’s a good indication that he’s trying to entertain himself because he’s bored. Restlessness is another common symptom of boredom in dogs. If your dog can’t seem to sit still or is always pacing back and forth, it’s likely that he’s eager for something to do.
A dog that is “bored” is not trying to occupy itself, but rather to unload an overflow of energy. That’s why we often suspect that a dog that is “exhausting”, that does “nonsense”, that we find “not wise” overall, is a bored dog. Of course, such a dog needs to learn a few things! But his life can be rebalanced in the areas of physical activity and cognitive activities, and that’s often a big part of the solution.
3. Your Dog Attracts Your Attention By Any Means
A bored dog may not always seek your attention “directly”, but it’s definitely possible. If your dog follows you around everywhere you go, they may be bored. There are several possible causes for this behavior, but one of them is boredom.
You’re the only “thing” worthy of interest in your dog’s environment. You move, you sometimes give food, thanks to you your dog can go out, get petting, and you sometimes use that little voice which is quite interesting to them…! Therefore, it’s important to try and keep your dog entertained so they don’t become bored.
When boredom is intense, daily and lasts a long time, it can be a problem. Your dog may be looking for something interesting to happen. Dogs are social creatures and need mental stimulation to stay happy and healthy. If your dog is constantly following you around or trying to sit on your lap, he may be bored and in need of some attention.
4. Your Dog Is Apathetic
Have you ever noticed your dog staring off into the distance as if they were daydreaming? This could be a sign that they’re bored. If your dog is healthy and generally happy, but refuses to go on walks or cuts them short, it may be because they’re bored of the same old routine. Dogs need mental stimulation as well as physical activity, so try mixing up their routine with some new smells, sounds, and sights.
The sensory experiences are always the same, which means that there are often no discoveries to be made. But changing the route is usually the solution! When you and your dog walk the same route every day, the brain falls into autopilot and starts to tune out our surroundings.
5. Your Dog Licks Or Scratches Excessively
If you have a dog, you may have noticed that they sometimes lick or scratch their skin excessively. While this behavior is usually harmless, it can sometimes be a sign of an underlying health issue. If your dog is licking or scratching more than normal, it is important to take them to the vet for a check-up.
Excessive licking can lead to open wounds and infection, while excessive scratching can cause the skin to break down and become raw. If you are concerned about your dog’s licking or scratching behavior, make an appointment with your veterinarian today.
Which Dog Breeds Are Sensitive To Boredom And Loneliness?
Some breeds of dogs have a reputation for being more sensitive to loneliness and not handling it as well as others, even though there are always exceptions to the rule. We shouldn’t generalize too much, though. Among the breeds that are typically thought of as being more prone to loneliness are:
- Siberian Husky
- Akita Inu
- Australian Shepherd
If you’re considering adopting a dog, it’s essential to do your research to find a breed that will be a good fit for your lifestyle. Some breeds are better suited for urban environments, while others require more space and attention. For example, some breeds are known for being high energy and require plenty of exercise and space, like:
- Border Collie
- Pyrenean Mountain (Patou)
- Pyrenean Mastiff
- Tibetan Mastiff
- Anatolian Shepherd Dog
- Maremma – Abruzzo Shepherd Dog
What To Do If Your Dog Is Bored?
If your dog is acting up and you suspect that boredom may be the cause, your first step should be to consult with your veterinarian. They will help you rule out any potential medical causes for the behavior and give you some ideas for solutions.
In most cases, a little bit of extra exercise or attention is all that’s needed to keep your dog happy and healthy. However, if the problem persists, there are a variety of dog-specific toys and puzzles on the market that can help relieve boredom and keep your furry friend entertained. Whatever course of action you decide to take, consulting with your vet is always the best way to ensure that your dog is healthy and happy.
Taking your dog for a walk is always a fun bonding experience, but sometimes you may want to mix things up! By playing games or signing up for activities with your furry friend, you can turn a simple stroll into an opportunity for quality time together.
For example, many dogs love Agility courses – and it’s a great way to build trust and teamwork between you and your pup. If you’re not interested in anything quite so formal, no problem – there are plenty of games you can play during your walks, like races, hide-and-seek, or treasure hunts.
Dogs are masters of manipulation. They know how to get under our skin and work their way into our hearts. So, it’s no surprise that they’ve also figured out how to use whining to their advantage. Unfortunately, this can often create a vicious cycle, where the dog whines more to get attention, and the owner responds by giving more attention.
However, this only reinforces the behavior and makes it more likely to continue. If you find yourself in this situation, it’s important to break the cycle by ignoring the whining and only rewarding calm behavior. It may be tough at first, but your dog will thank you in the end.
One of the things you’ll need to teach your new puppy is how to be comfortable when they’re alone. This is called ‘solitude learning’ and it’s an important skill for all dogs to have. The first step is to get your pup used to you leaving the house. You can do this by gradually increasing the amount of time you’re away, without making a big deal out of it. Normalize your departure by doing things like getting dressed and taking your keys without actually leaving. This way, your pup won’t associate those actions with you leaving and getting stressed out.
The key is to make sure they’re not overly excited when you come back, so they don’t get upset when you have to leave again. With a little patience, your pup will learn to be comfortable spending time alone and will be much happier for it in the long run.
Being away from your furry companion can be hard, but there are ways to make it easier on both of you! Leaving out a few of their favorite toys will help keep them occupied, and you can even try hiding some food in specially designed toys to really keep their attention.
If you have the option, finding them a furry friend to hang out with while you’re gone is a great way to keep them company. And of course, remember that even if they have a big backyard to run around in, they still need to go outside regularly to socialize and explore. A little bit of planning will help make sure your time apart is as stress-free as possible for both of you!
Make sure to have a look at our “7 Tips To Make Your Pet Happy When He’s Feeling Low“.