Giving treats is more than saying “good job.” It’s a great way to bond with your pet and show how much you care about them. To step away from the daily grind and enjoy a few stress-free moments with your pet. Here are some ideas to take treat time from passive to playful, making it more interactive and fun for all.
1) Let them choose!
Grab a leash and bring them to the pet store. Let them sniff the different treats and choose one that gets their tails or purrs going.
2) Mix up textures
Treats come in all different forms – crunchy, soft, chewy, even wet! If you typically buy one form, see what your pet thinks about a different texture. Many pets find wet treats, like Tiki Cat® or Tiki Dog™ Petites Stix™, especially exciting due to their enticing aroma, flavor and lick-ability. Plus, they offer a boost of hydration as an extra health benefit.
3) The cup game
With your pet watching, place three cups upside down on the floor, and put a treat, like Tiki Cat® Crunchers, under one of them. Move the cups around a few times, and see if your dog or cat can use their nose to find the treat.
4) Offer non-treat treats
Treats don’t always have to be “treats.” A scoop of mouthwatering wet food can get your pet just as excited, especially if it’s a flavor they haven’t tried before!
An oldie but goodie! Place a treat inside a puzzle feeder or a durable toy, and watch your pet have fun getting it out while stimulating their brain. Stuff a catnip mouse with Tiki Cat® Dash™ smoked fish flakes, or put Tiki Dog™ Petites Air-Dried Morsels inside a rubber toy.
6) Make an obstacle course
It doesn’t have to be elaborate (American Ninja Warrior cat?). Agility training is great mental and physical exercise for pets. You can make one at home using household items, like broomstick hurdles and cardboard box tunnels, and rewarding progress with treats.
7) Cool off with a cold treat
Place Tiki Cat® or Tiki Dog™ Petites Stix™ in the refrigerator for a refreshing treat.
8) Make a “treatsicle”
Another cool idea? Freeze Tiki Cat® Broths or Tiki Dog™ Petites Flavor Boosters in ice cube trays to help pets cool off on hot, summer days. Frozen treats don’t just taste delicious; they’re super fun to eat too, slipping and sliding around as pets lick and chomp!
9) Surprise treats
Absence makes the heart grow fonder – and so do treats! Before you leave your home, hide a couple treats around your house in your pets’ favorite places for them to find while you’re away.
10) Treat them to an experience
How about a non-food treat? Take your dog to a new park, on a new walking route, or even a swim. New smells are treats for the nose! For indoor cats, bring nature inside with lots of fresh air and sunshine. Consider bringing found nature objects inside for them to smell and play with, like a few acorns or feathers (wash first with mild soap and water). Or, install a window bird feeder and watch their inner hunter come out.
Making your pets happy makes you happy too. But, sometimes making them happy can make them unhealthy. For example, feeding them table scraps. This is bad for their health and their manners. Also, be careful not to over-treat. Too many treats can lead to weight gain and other health issues. Check the packaging for recommended daily amounts based on your pet’s size.
Have a fun treat tip? Leave a comment below!