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My 6 month old male GSD needs stimulation, he used to go to doggy daycare 3 times a week and now that he hit 6 months he must be neutered before he can return, we are waiting at least a year before we get him neutered. He has a very mild drive.

My husband and I both work so, he gets crated for about 5-6 hours a day, I would leave him out, because he is fully potty trained, but when he gets bored he gets destructive.

We take him on walks on nice days, but not when it's too cold out.

What are someways you work your GSD?
 

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Obidience Training. Play fetch. I think it’s really important that they get off leash activity multiple times a week. Go to a open field and play fetch. Use the ball as a reward for obidience
 

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Obidience Training. Play fetch. I think it’s really important that they get off leash activity multiple times a week. Go to a open field and play fetch. Use the ball as a reward for obidience
Diesel Loves fetch!! His favorite is the kong squeaky balls
 

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Do things that work his mind. Obedience, tricks, agility foundation.

Hikes are great for both exercise and mentally stimulating
 

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I work full time, from home usually 3 days a week. Plus, joint custody of 3 small kids, with 2 of them being disabled. So it is tough.

On home work days I take him for an hour walk a day when I can, and work in some OB. When I get a break in between calls and work, I will do a quick training session in the house. Even if it is 5 to 10 min, a few breaks a day. Very beneficial. When I go out on sales calls and it is cool enough in the truck, I bring him with. Some clients ask to see him inside their place even.

Weekends with the kids, I watch them play in the yard. Fetch, tug. Can't really do walks on kid weekends.

On non kid week/weekends (we exchange parenting time every 7 days) I do the same during work hours, but I will go for a run or to the park after work to work him. Non kid weekends are all about the hikes and visiting dog friendly places like Home Depot, pet stores.

You just have to grab it when you can get it.
 

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tracking is a great way to work the mind, which in turn is a way to bond, learn and teach the dog some control. I also let my dog run often to work the muscles...there are some exercises you can work on the core(peanut, ball balance type work, or perchwork)
Perchwork is both mental and physical but doesn't really build muscle mass like plain out running or swimming can.
 
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Mind games,as already mentioned. Nosework,tricks,and all obedience is to dogs is tricks. Simple moving activities like directed going around objects, trees outside, chairs inside, weaving through your legs, teach a place command and then teach it from a distance. You can use a small rug for place and take it outside and the dog learns to run to it. Practical fun games.
 
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As comet dog mentioned you have to do these things when you can. I have no set schedule. Max and Luna enjoy Long hikes going to different hiking trails beaches. Swimming in the summer.
Sometimes I bring the two dogs they can physically work each other out more then I ever can- running at crazy fast speeds. I don’t think Max ever pants heavily during the winter no matter how long and fast he runs. I don’t think it is that easy to get them physically tired but they love to smell and investigate in the trails so it is satisfying mentally to them. Mind games are important. I have and I like to do nose works, herding and and carting/sledding and bikejoring. Want to do tracking. I like to try to learn or practice training and some dog tricks on YouTube. It is always good to learn something new. If I can get the kids to hide they will hide in the woods so the dogs can find them adding distance.



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With my Whippets I could get away with staying inside on nasty weather days; they had their blanket-lined chairs in front of the wood stove and were super content. Instead of begging to go outside, they stood in front of the stove, looking at me and hoping I would built a fire! With the WL GSDs not so much; so I invested in water resistant hiking boots and a waterproof long rain coat for these NW wintery days. Good for the dogs and for me too! I actually like the wet winter days; dogs won't overheat and love the water in the creeks everywhere. GSDs are not dogs for 'just the nice days'.
When we lived in snowy eastern OR, we had outdoor clothes for that climate.
I would prefer crating for 5 hours over day care as long as you work and exercise him before he is left alone. He already has let you know that he is too young to be trusted loose in the house.
 

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I do toy recognition games of Find. I'll get her on a toy, then I'll start hiding it and telling her to find the toy. She likes her one squeaky toy, so I'll hide it and say "Find Squeak." I have a few other toys I'm getting into her vocab so we can do games with them too

It works her mind and I get to be somewhat lazy at home :D
 
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