how to keep a dog entertained in yard

How To Keep A Dog Entertained In The Yard

Dogs love the outdoors and could probably have fun outside all day.  Do you ever run out of ideas to keep your dog entertained in the yard?  Going on a walk is nice, but sometimes you may want to switch things up with some new activities.  This article will discuss different activities that you can do with your dog in the backyard.

Activities to keep your dog entertained in the yard

Playing Fetch

Many dogs love to chase things, so fetch is a natural fit.  If your dog likes to play fetch then this is a great activity to play with your dog in the yard.  Dogs enjoy running after a ball or a frisbee, and even other things like sticks. 

Dog outside in the yard

There are also a lot of ball launchers and even devices that can throw the ball for you.  If your dog doesn’t know how to play fetch, consider teaching them as it can provide many hours of entertainment for your and your dog right at home.

Water Activities

A lot of dog breeds love the water and water activities.  If the weather allows a great activity to keep your dog entertained in the yard is playing in a kiddie pool or sprinkler toys. 

Many kid water toys are also fun for dogs.  They love jumping in and out of the water and there are even dog toys made specifically for water activities.  During the summer months my German Shepherd loves spending an afternoon outside romping around in the kiddie pool.

Tricks Training

It’s always fun to teach your dog new tricks.  Tricks training is a great activity that can be done outside in the yard as well as inside.  You can teach your dog tricks like bringing you the mail, rolling over, heeling, as well as basic commands like sit, stay and down. 

There are easier tricks you can teach a puppy and more advance tricks for more experienced dogs.  Dogs need mental stimulation as well as physical exercise, so they will enjoy learning new things in the fresh air and it is a great bonding activity.


Tracking is an awesome way to keep your dog engaged in the yard.  My dog started tracking when she was six months old, so both younger and older dogs can enjoy this activity.

Dogs have a strong sense of smell, so with tracking you are teaching them how to use that sense of smell to track a person or another animal.  However, you start them learning how to track using tasty smelly treats.

You make a short path for them to follow using their nose and can get more advanced as time goes on.  Before you know it, they will be able to track you or another person, it is pretty cool!

Sledding (Winter)

If you live in a colder snowy climate, sledding and playing in the snow is really fun for dogs.  Some dogs like actually riding around on the sled, while others just enjoy chasing the sled down the hill with their family in tow.

If you have a dog breed that enjoys the cold weather, just being outside in the snow is exciting for them.  My silly dog likes eating the snow and chasing the snow as I shovel the driveway.


Agility training is a dog sport where dogs compete on an obstacle course usually in teams.  However, this is also a great activity to do with your dog at home.

Obstacles like the tunnels, bar jumps, and weave poles can be purchased rather inexpensively and can be set up in your backyard.  These obstacles can provide your dog with hours of entertainment outside the house, and maybe lead to them becoming very good at agility and being able to compete if you wanted to go that route. 

Playdates with Other Dogs

Another great way to keep your dog entertained without a walk is to invite some other doggie friends over for a playdate.  If you have neighbors or family members with dogs, have their dogs come over and the dogs will run around playing together and tire each other out.  They have fun and you didn’t have to do much but supervise.

Why you would want to keep your dog entertained in the yard?

Although walks are a great way to give dogs exercise, sometimes we get a little bored walking the same path over and over again.  Finding other outside activities can help with the monotony, if you get bored easily. 

Other times you may just want to stay around the house because there is something going on in your area so you don’t want to walk around.  Or maybe you are unable to walk because of an injury or illness.

Whatever the reason, having multiple ways of keeping your dog busy outdoors is definitely a plus.


Walking your dog is great, but sometimes it is not always possible, or you just get bored with the same routine.  Adding different activities that you can do with your dog in the yard is a good way to vary things up a bit, but still give your dog exercise.

My dog loves tracking, playing fetch, and romping around in a kiddie pool if it’s warm outside.  What ways do you keep your dog entertained in the yard?  Let me know in the comments!