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40 Excellent Games to Play With Dogs Outside

Feeling bored of doing the same old walk in the park with your pet? Let’s spice things up! Here are 40 games to play with dogs outside that will turn your backyard or local park into a tail-wagging wonderland. 

40 games to play with dogs outside

Fetch games to do with dogs

1. Classic fetch

games to play with dogs outside

Choose a quiet and safe area.

Start with short throws.

Use a brightly colored ball or frisbee.

Encourage your dog to bring it back using a friendly tone.

Reward with a treat or praise upon successful retrieval.

Treat recommendation: Low-calorie training treats for dogs

2. Water fetch

Ensure your dog is comfortable with water.

Choose a calm water source (shallow pool or beach).

Toss a water-friendly toy.

Gradually increase the distance.

3. Fetch and tug-of-war

After fetching, engage in a brief tug-of-war.

Use a tug toy with a strong grip.

Release the toy after a short tug.

Praise and reward for participation.

4. Fetch the stick

Use a safe stick size for your dog’s mouth.

Toss it gently.

Ensure the area is clear of obstacles.

Encourage your dog to bring it back.

Agility and obstacle courses

Start with a few simple obstacles.

Use treats to guide your dog.

Gradually introduce more challenges.

Keep sessions short and positive.

6. Hurdles

Set up low hurdles.

Guide your dog to jump over.

Gradually increase height.

Reward each successful jump.

7. Tunnel run

Introduce the tunnel slowly.

Use treats to guide your dog through.

Increase tunnel length over time.

Celebrate when your dog completes the tunnel.

Water games to play with dogs

8. Sprinkler play

Turn on the sprinkler in a secure area.

Monitor your dog’s comfort level.

Encourage them to run through the water.

Praise and reward for participation.

9. Swimming

Start in shallow water.

Enter the water with your dog.

Encourage paddling with support.

Gradually move to deeper areas.

10. Water hose fun

Use a gentle water stream.

Allow your dog to chase the water.

Make it a playful experience.

Monitor for signs of enjoyment.

11. Kiddie pool splash

Fill a kiddie pool with a shallow amount of water.

Let your dog wade in and splash around.

You can toss toys into the pool for them to retrieve.

12. Duck retrieval

Introduce floating duck toys.

Toss them into shallow water.

Encourage retrieval with positive cues.

Gradually increase difficulty.

13. Water frisbee

Use a soft and floating frisbee.

Toss it into the water.

Encourage your dog to retrieve in the water.

Praise successful water frisbee catches.

Scent and search games

Start indoors with treats or toys.

Hide them in easy spots.

Gradually move to the outdoor environment.

Encourage searching with cues.

15. Scent trail

Create a simple trail using treats.

Guide your dog along the trail.

Increase complexity over time.

Reward at the end of the trail.

16. Treasure hunt

Bury toys in a sandbox or loose soil.

Encourage digging and searching.

Use a cue like “find the treasure.”

Praise when they discover a buried toy.

Running and racing games

17. Race around trees

Choose a clear area with trees.

Encourage your dog to run around a tree.

Use treats for motivation.

Practice in both directions.

18. Chase the owner

Start with short sprints.

Use an enthusiastic tone.

Allow your dog to catch you occasionally.

Reward and praise during breaks.

19. Relay races

Set up markers for a course.

Run or guide your dog through.

Use cues for turns and stops.

Reward at the end of each lap.

Interactive games for dogs

20. Interactive fetch with a launching toy

Use a ball-launching toy.

Teach your dog to drop the ball into the launcher and then retrieve the launched ball.

21. Frisbee catch

Start with short, low throws.

Encourage your dog to catch mid-air.

Use a soft frisbee for safety.

Praise successful catches.

22. Soccer with a ball

Roll or gently kick a ball.

Encourage your dog to “herd” the ball.

Use praise for engagement.

Dog training games to play with dogs outside

23. Training session

how to train an akita

Incorporate commands like sit, stay, and come.

Use treats or favorite toys as rewards.

Keep sessions short and positive.

Gradually increase difficulty.

24. Agility hoops

Teach your dog to walk through a hoop.

Use treats and positive reinforcement.

Gradually increase hoop height.

Celebrate successful passes.

25. Balance games

Introduce balancing on logs or platforms.

Use treats as incentives.

Encourage stability and control.

Gradually increase difficulty.

Socialization games

26. Doggy playdate

Choose dogs with similar energy levels.

Start in a neutral territory.

Allow supervised play.

Intervene if needed.

27. Group fetch

Ensure enough space for multiple dogs.

Use brightly colored toys.

Encourage turns for fetching.

Praise all participating dogs.

28. Group obedience class

Attend a group obedience class.

Dogs can learn and practice commands together, promoting socialization.

Dog mind stimulation games

29. Puzzle toys

Introduce a puzzle toy with treats.

Demonstrate how it works.

Encourage your dog to solve it.

Gradually increase complexity.

30. Hide and treat

Hide treats in the yard.

Encourage your dog to search.

Use cues like “find the treat.”

Praise successful finds.

31. Bubble chasing

Use dog-friendly bubbles.

Blow bubbles for your dog to chase.

Make it a playful and engaging activity.

Praise for active participation.

Relaxation and bonding games

32. Outdoor cuddling

Choose a comfortable spot.

Sit or lie down with your dog.

Use gentle strokes and calming words.

Enjoy quiet bonding time.

Explore a nearby park or trail.

Allow your dog to sniff and investigate.

Walk at a relaxed pace.

Enjoy the surroundings together.

34. Picnic time

Pack dog-friendly treats and water.

Choose a shaded area.

Share treats and relax.

Reinforce positive interactions.

Environmental exploration games

35. Nature hunt

Walk slowly, allowing your dog to sniff.

Explore different textures and scents.

Use cues like “check it out.”

Make it a sensory experience.

36. Sensory garden adventure

Plant a small sensory garden with dog-friendly herbs and plants (mint, lavender).

Allow your dog to explore and sniff different scents.

37. Beachcombing

Explore the beach at a relaxed pace.

Let your dog investigate sand and seaweed.

Keep an eye on them around water.

Enjoy a leisurely stroll.

Teamwork and communication games

38. Three-legged race

Use a bandana or soft tie to connect yourself to your dog.

Walk together, promoting synchronized movement.

Encourage your dog to follow your lead.

39. Canine Yoga session

Practice dog-friendly yoga poses together.

Use treats and calming cues to guide your dog through the poses.

40. Bikejoring or canicross

Engage in bikejoring or canicross activities.

Allow your dog to pull you while running, promoting teamwork and synchronization.

Conclusion

lhasa apsos

Think outside the box when it comes to playing with your pup! These outdoor games are more than just fun; they promote communication, teamwork, and a deeper connection between you and your furry friend. Whether racing around trees, splashing in the water, or working on obedience training, each game helps you create unforgettable memories and bond with them. So, what are you waiting for? Get outside and have some fun!

Last but not least…

For an all-in-one solution for most behavior problems your dog has now or may have in the future, check out this free online dog training workshop that improves dog-owner relationships and prevents poor behavior like: 

    • Barking
    • Accidents
    • Leash pulling
    • Not coming when called
    • Jumping on people
    • Running out the door
    • Chasing cars or animals
    • Chewing
    • Nipping or biting
    • Begging
    • Getting too excited
    • Ignoring commands

The workshop is conducted by Dr. Alexa Diaz, Ph.D., one of the most respected service dog trainers in the United States, and Eric Presnall, host of the Animal Planet TV show “Who Let the Dogs Out.” It has made life easier for many dog owners. Click here to get it.

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