Looking for a toy to physically exercise our dog? Think about a flirt pole for dogs.
In this article, you’ll find out about the flirt pole:
- What’s a flirt pole?
- How to use a flirt pole with my dog?
- The benefits of using a Flirt Pole
- What games and skills can you train with a flirt pole?
- Safety warnings & tips for flirt pole use
Now, let’s dive into the basics of a flirt pole for dogs.
What’s a flirt pole?
A flirt pole is a fun and useful toy that a lot of dogs really enjoy. It’s a simple toy you can make yourself (or buy for less than $30 if you don’t like to build things).
It gives your dog lots of fun and learning. It can help teach them basic behaviors and self-control, and it’s great for getting exercise in small or outdoor areas.
It’s made of these 3 easy parts:
- A long pole (which can expand or collapse), made from a light but strong material
- A long string or rope tied to one end of the pole
- A lure, such as a toy or eye-catching material, tied to the end of the rope
Plus, you don’t need to do much. This is an excellent way to keep your dogs busy and challenged, right from home. Now, let’s go to how to play with a flirt pole.
How to use a flirt pole with my dog?
We need to know how a flirt pole works. You should pull the toy along the ground in a circle, and they run after it and pull, but with rules.
Using a flirt pole with dogs is simple: hold the pole so the lure is just beyond your dog’s reach and move the pole in various ways so the lure moves in unexpected directions.
Here are the detailed steps. First, remember to enjoy and ensure your dog is having a great time too!
- Wave or pull the toy near your dog to get them interested in chasing it.
- Once they start chasing, move the toy away from them.
- You can switch the toy’s direction a few times.
- Let your dog catch the toy before they get too frustrated or loses interest.
- Once they’ve caught it, let them play with the toy for a bit, then trade it for some treats so they release the flirt pole without a fuss.
- You can do this several times before storing the toy away.
Pro tip: You should avoid playing with the flirt pole on a slippery surface.
After knowing how to use a flirt pole for dogs, let’s dive into why you want to use a flirt pole.
The benefits of using a flirt pole
- It’s a super-efficient way to wear out dogs fast, making them very tired after playing. The great thing is, it’s easy for you, so you don’t get tired.
- The flirt pole is not just a toy; it’s also a fun training tool. You can use it to practice commands like sit, down, look, wait, take it, leave it, and drop it. This makes learning more fun and helps your dog remember these commands better.
- It’s especially good for teaching your dog to listen to you even when they are very excited, like during chasing and tugging. Then they learn to calm down quickly when you tell them to drop it and lie down. This is really helpful for dogs that get excited easily and need to learn to control themselves.
- You can use it to tire out your dog at home before you go for a walk. This can make the walk more relaxing because your dog has already used some energy.
- Or, you can use it to exercise your dog at home instead of going for a walk. This is great when you are too busy or when the weather is bad.
- If you don’t have a big space, you can make a smaller version of the flirt pole to use inside your house. This way, your dog can still play and exercise even if you don’t have a yard.
What games and skills can you train with a flirt pole?
Teaching proper play skills is key to using and training with the flirt pole effectively. Some games and skills ideas are below:
Get Toy on Cue – Your dog needs to know when it’s time to start the game! I teach them that “Get It” means it’s time to grab the toy and play!
Release on Your Signal/Release on Cue – It’s crucial for your dog to release the toy when you need a break in the game. I start by stopping the toy’s movement (making it less interesting), then resume the game once the dog lets go. Once they’re quick to release, I add a verbal cue for it.
Stimulus Control – Chase Only When Cued – The game should only begin on your command. Once my dog understands “Get It” as the start signal, I increase the waiting time before giving the cue, placing the toy in different spots (on the ground, in my hand, on a table, etc.). I reward them for waiting with the “Get It” cue when they’re calm.
Pick Up Toy from Ground on Cue – I train my dogs to run and pick up the toy lying on the ground as a cue to start the game. This is great for enhancing recall and stay commands and for complex training like agility where the toy needs to be away from me.
The flirt pole can help you teach your dog many skills, but there are some important warnings to keep in mind when using it. Let’s learn them.
Safety warnings & tips for flirt pole use
Ensuring safety is crucial when engaging your dog in play with a flirt pole. It’s not just about fun; it’s also about preventing injuries and stress. Following these guidelines can help make the most of this stimulating and interactive toy while keeping your furry friend safe and happy.
Pre and post-exercise: It’s good to walk your dog a little before and after using the flirt pole to prevent muscle strains.
Responsible play: Remember, flirt poles are powerful training tools. Use them wisely. Don’t overdo it and give your dog breaks and water.
Jumping risks: Be careful with making dogs jump, particularly puppies under one year, as their bones are still growing.
Health precautions: Don’t use a flirt pole with dogs having joint or hip issues.
Foot protection: Wear closed-toe shoes, especially if your dog might step on your feet with their claws.
Hold tight: Keep your grip on the pole when your dog catches the lure. Releasing it can cause the pole to snap back dangerously.
Lure safety: Don’t attach hard or heavy objects to the cord. If released under tension, they could become harmful projectiles.
Training benefits: Use the flirt pole for training too. Teach your dog commands like sit, down, and wait before chasing the lure.
Rewards: Let your dog catch the lure occasionally, praise them, then get them to release it and start again.
Watch for overexcitement: Notice signs of too much excitement or stress. Take a break if your dog is panting a lot or seems agitated.
Appropriate space: Only use the flirt pole in a safe, enclosed area where there’s no risk of your dog running into danger.
Regular checks: Inspect the flirt pole and lure for damage before each use.
Supervised play: If kids are using the flirt pole with a pet, always supervise them.
Know your dog’s limits: Keep in mind your dog’s fitness level. Older or less active dogs might need shorter play times.
Summary of using a flirt pole for dogs
A flirt pole can really boost your dog’s self-control, their listening skills around distractions, and your communication with them!
Also, it’s a super effective toy for wearing out both your puppy and older dog.
If you’ve already used a flirt pole with your dog, what’s their favorite toy to chase?
And if you haven’t tried it yet, make sure to come back to this page and share in the comments how your dog liked it!
If you found this article useful, you might also be interested in – 5 Stimulating Dog Toys For Your Dog’s Mental Exercise