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Fun summer dog games to play with your pooch

It’s the season for outdoor fun! Summer is here and your pooch wants to run outside to play. Enjoy the sunshine with your best friend as you play these great summer dog games.

It’s the season for outdoor fun! Summer is here and your pooch wants to run outside to play. Enjoy the sunshine with your best friend as you play these great summer dog games.

Water sports

Water games are a great way to cool your dog down while keeping them entertained. Start with Bobbing for Treats—fill a wading pool with water, add waterproof toys and encourage your dog to retrieve or play with the toys. For extra fun, tuck some treats inside plastic, sealable balls, toss them in the pool, and let your dog try to catch them. If they successfully catch the right ball, open it up and give them the treat.

Next, it’s time for a Sprinkler Party. On a really hot sunny day, turn the sprinkler on, add a water-loving dog who wants to cool off, and you’ve got guaranteed summer fun. Experiment with different styles of sprinklers, too. Here are the 5 best dog sprinklers this summer including one sprinkler that’s paw-activated. Adjust the water pressure to make the spray bigger or smaller to provide different levels of play for your dog. If your dog’s nervous around water, start with a smaller spray to build confidence.

Australian shepherd puppy playing with a lawn sprinkler

Monkey in the Middle

This is a classic kids’ game that needs:

  • 2 people
  • 1 dog
  • 1 dog ball or soft chew toy

Call your dog to stand between you and your friend. Then toss the ball back and forth and challenge your dog to catch the ball mid-throw. You want to toss the ball at a height and speed that’s a bit challenging for your pooch. Throw it too slow and low and the game’s over too soon!

Playing with the dog at the beach

Encourage your dog to get the ball and reward their catches with praise and a treat. This fun game for the backyard or park challenges your dog to problem-solve and catch the ball when it’s jusssssst out of reach.

DIY Dog Agility Course

Does your dog love to watch the Westminster Dog Show on TV? Why not build them a home agility course! Teach your dog to leap over jump bars, balance on a teeter-totter, run through tunnels, weave around poles, and go up and down A-frames. An agility course is an excellent way to challenge their mind and keep their body healthy.

golden retriever running on grassy field

You can download plans to build an easy-to-assemble DIY dog agility course. Be creative – add old kids toys or exercise equipment to build tunnels, obstacles, and bridges.

Hide and fetch

It’s always a good time to learn a new trick. So how about teaching your dog something useful…like making them find your keys. You can reward them by giving them cool treats like delicious frozen pupsicles.

You can teach your pooch to fetch just about anything. Have them fetch the vanilla-scented rope toy instead of their normal one. Or you can play the mentally-stimulating shell game and get your dog to figure out which upside-down container is hiding the treat.

Play into a dogs natural rhythm

Dogs are crepuscular animals by nature, which means they’re often more active at dusk and dawn. They prefer to avoid blazing hot afternoons, so go play in the morning or evening when it’s cooler. Dogs are happy to chill out when the sun’s high in the sky, so you never have to feel the need to play during peak heat.

Insure your fun and games

You’ll have even more fun knowing you’ve protected your furry friend from the unexpected. Get peace of mind that they're covered with pet insurance, offered through BCAA's partnership with Pets Plus Us. Plus, BCAA Members save 12%*.

child playing soccer with golden retriever

Have a happy, playful summer!

*BCAA Members with a Basic, Plus or Premier Membership plan receive a preferred rate of 12% off. BCAA GO Members and Non-Members receive a preferred rate of 7% off. For full details, please visit
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