Playing with your Blind Dog

Obviously the usual ball games etc will now be impossible for your dog without some modification, either to the game or to the toy being used.

    • Adding a scent to a tennis ball or other toy will help your blind dog to follow and locate it. Vanilla is good, or alternatively some favourite food smell works just as well
  • Adding jingle bells to your dogs favourite silent toy will help too. Take care when adding the jingle bells. These should be inserted into the toy rather than attached to the outside where they could be pulled off and swallowed. Make a small slit in the toy and push the bell through but make sure the slit isn’t too big, otherwise the bell will fall out and again your dog could swallow it
    Note: As soon as the toy shows signs of splitting or holes it should be disgarded, or at least have the bell removed just in case your dog gets hold of the bell and swallows it
  • Squeaky toys, or toys that make other noises are good for blind dogs. However, we have found that Milo easily loses track of those toys that only make a noise whilst on the move. He’s not quick enough to get to them before they stop moving and he loses track of where the sound came from
  • Toys that make a sound for an extended period of time are usually much better. We have a space hopper type toy which continues to squeak for a long time if you squeeze as much of the air out of it as you can before throwing it. Milo loves this particular toy because he can just about get to it before it stops squeaking
  • Bounce the ball or toy not too far from your blind dog, rather than throw it a long distance. Your blind dog will love scrabbling around trying to get hold of the toy just as much as s/he used to enjoy running after it
  • Tug of War games are great for blind dogs because they know exactly where you are all the while they’ve got you at the other end of the tug toy
  • Treat balls are a good idea too. These are hollow balls into which you put some of your dog’s favourite treats and then your dog will roll the ball around trying to get at the treats inside. The treats are dispensed through the opening, just one or two at a time, as the ball is rolled across the floor. Milo is a huge fan of these toys, but we do spend a lot of time rescuing the ball from under pieces of furniture!

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