Ideas for an Indoor Playroom for Dogsby Pamela Miller
A playroom designed with dogs and puppies in mind is a recipe for incredible fun! Play is an integral part of a dog's life. Through play, dogs establish boundaries, get exercise and release energy. A puppy playroom is perfect for climates that are too hot or cold for playing outside and for dogs who may not live in a home with a backyard. Designing a playroom for your pooch can be lots of fun in itself!
Just like energetic children, many dogs can find a lot of fun and enjoyment out of climbing on jungle gyms and sliding down an attached slide. While not all dogs will be able to embark on a jungle gym journey, small- to medium-sized dogs can get some pent-up energy released on a jungle gym. It's important to keep a watchful eye on a dog playing on one to keep him out of harm's way. Larger breeds of dogs that are prone to hip dysplasia such as retrievers should get a veterinarian's OK before playing on a jungle gym. Puppies who are still developing and not as strong as adult dogs should also get a veterinarian's approval for playing on a jungle gym.
Different than a commercial jungle gym, some play structures are designed especially with dogs in mind. A play structure may include a ramp or an agility-like walkway. Dogs enjoy working their way up to a high point and being able to look down while seeing their "kingdom." This is great fun for them and gives them a feeling of accomplishment while getting great exercise.
A playroom wouldn't be complete without a variety of toys to stimulate your dog's mind and encourage playtime. A toy box can consist of a simple crate or a wooden chest. Utilize your inner artist and paint a wooden chest with paw prints and dog bones, for example. If you work with your dog, you may even be able to teach him to help put away his toys in his toy box when playtime is over.
A playroom is a place of, well, play! And when a dog plays, chances are that he will be running and jumping quite a bit. It's important that the flooring in a playroom is safe and won't leave him slipping and sliding into an injury. Rubber mats allow for easy clean-up in case of a doggie accident. It's also important to keep in mind that certain types of flooring such as concrete can be harmful to a dog's joints.
- Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images