Halloween, time to get spooky with your pet! Cats can chase and swat away this cute fleece toy, and dogs can play all sorts of fun training games with it.
You need: white and some colored fleece fabric and scissors. If you want to give the ghost eyes, you will need a permanent black marker.
To make the ghost
Cut a square piece of white fleece approximately 30 x 30 centimeters. You can also make the ghost slightly larger or smaller, according to the size of your animal. Place a wad of fleece in the middle of the square, you can use scraps for this. This is the main stuffing of your ghost. Pull the square piece of fleece over the wad and tie off the 'head' of the ghost by firmly wrapping a loose strip of fleece in a different color around the 'neck' a few times and then tying it like a scarf. Give the ghost eyes or a face as desired. Done!
Game tips for your dog
- Catch a ghost! Throw the ghost in a gentle arc towards your dog, in such a way that he can easily catch it. Note: it’s not the intention that the dog makes such strange jumps that he can injure himself! Make sure the ghost always lands in front of your dog, not above or behind him. Can't your dog catch it yet? Then first teach him to do so by handing him the ghost from your hand, and then holding it above his mouth so he can calmly tackle it.
- Spooky search. Hide the ghost somewhere in the house, in the garden or outside during the walk: first a little visible, then a little more difficult. Extra fun: let the fairy 'float' in the bushes outside! Can your dog find his fleece friend again? And can he wait while you hide the ghost from him? This way, you have a great stick-to-itiveness exercise! You can also make several ghosts and hide them for extra tracking fun.
- Ignoring the ghost. Use the ghost for a self-control exercise: throw the ghost into an empty bucket while the dog has to stay put. This can be done from different positions, for example with the dog next to you while you throw the ghost into a bucket in front of you, with the bucket between you and the dog or, even more difficult, with the dog between you and the bucket, where you throw the ghost over the dog into the bucket. Does your dog stay seated? Let him grab the ghost to play with at your signal. Extra fun: let the fairy tale 'float' in the bushes outside! Spooky, spooky.
- A variation on the ball game: ghost, ghost! Place three large flower pots in a row and hide the ghost under one of them. Can your dog tell under which flowerpot his ghost is? You can make the game more difficult by using more flower pots.
- Ghost Sorting. A fun game for several dogs and people: throw the spooks from all the dogs in a pile (just to be sure, mark them with a pen on the inside with a name or letter). Then take turns sending the dogs to the mountain of ghosts with a 'search': does each dog know how to find the ghost with its own scent attached to it?
Game tips for your cat
- Hunting ghost. Attach a long rope to the neck of the ghost and pull the ghost in long lines quickly for your cat to chase.
- Zipper Ghost. Many cats love a rustling sound. To do this, you can incorporate a piece of paper that creaks and crackles into the little ghost's head.
Before you start "ghosting," a few things are very important to know:
- Only let your dog or cat play with fleece toys under supervision. Never leave your animal alone with a fleece toy. You play with fleece together!
- Prevent your animal from breaking the toy and/or swallowing pieces of it.
- Prevent multiple animals from playing with the toy at the same time, as this can lead to unintentional competition and aggression.