Ensuring your dog is mentally stimulated and getting plenty of physical activity is a crucial part of owning a dog. Dogs Trust cares for 17,000 dogs a year and across our 20 rehoming centres in the UK we have seen dogs who are handed over to us that have exhibited challenging behaviour due to boredom that could have been resolved with some fun and energetic exercises. We conducted a survey last year which showed that nearly half of dogs owners we asked (57%)* claimed that it’s actually a lack of time that prevents them from playing with their dog which is so essential in not only building the unique human/dog bond, but also keeping them entertained. No matter the weather, dogs need to be exercised, encouraged to play and socialised with other dogs throughout the year. Of course, walking your dog during the winter months can be more difficult but there are few things a dog loves more than being outdoors and it’s a vital part of being a responsible dog owner.”

*Survey carried out by Opinion Leader Research 8/10/15 – 15/10/15, with 1,000 dog owners. www.onepoll.com for Dogs Trust