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Tips For A Dog Friendly Easter Hunt!

Creating an Easter hunt for your dog is a fantastic way to engage their natural sniffing and foraging instincts while providing mental and physical enrichment. Here's a step-by-step guide to setting up a fun and stimulating scent work activity for your furry friend. 


  • Choose Suitable Treats: Select treats that are highly appealing to your dog and have a strong scent. We have opted to use The Paw Grocer freeze dried duck hearts. These healthy treats are Australian made and suitably smelly and the dogs seem to love the taste! 

  • Pick Your Location: Decide on a safe, enclosed area for the treasure hunt. This can be indoors, like your living room, or outdoors in a secure yard. 

  • Gather Supplies: Aside from the treats, you might need containers or toys to hide treats in, and a leash if you're working in an unenclosed area. We have opted to use plastic Easter Eggs. Plastic eggs are easy to find and use with your dog as long as he isn’t the type to chew on them! These are easy to find in any dollar store or supermarket during the Easter season. If you have a young puppy or your dog cannot be trusted with a plastic egg, consider using tougher stuffable commercial dog toys or forego the toy altogether and just hide the treats. 

  1. Safety First: If your dog will swallow a traditional plastic Easter egg in one gulp or crunch it into his gums and swallow the shards, he’ll have to go on an egg-less hunt. If your dog doesn’t react reliably to a “leave it” command, or if he snatches items and likes to run away with them, forgo the plastic eggs as well. Rather than plastic eggs, you can use stuffable dog toys, or simply hide the treats.   Always Supervise: Ensure you're always there to supervise your dog during the Easter hunt to prevent them from ingesting non-edible items or getting into dangerous spots. 

  2. Introducing The Hidden Eggs: Place the first egg in front of your dog, and let him gobble the treat inside. Help him open the egg if he can’t do it himself. Next, lead him to the first well-hidden egg. After the third or so hidden egg, he should start to understand the game and begin searching. It’s OK if he doesn’t. You might have to lead him to every egg you’ve hidden. Sprinkle the eggs around your floor or the yard, and let your dog have fun finding these easy treats. This is a game that you’re playing together as a bonding experience, so his understanding of the game is less important than the fun you have playing it. 

  3. Pick Up Count: If you’ve hidden 12 plastic eggs, make sure that you have accounted for 12 eggs when the game is over. If you aren’t likely to remember where you hid them, write down all of your hiding spots. You don’t want your dog or another animal to find the egg later and chew it unsupervised. 

Advanced Hiding Techniques:

  • Lay A Scent Trail: Begin creating a trail of treats that leads to a larger "treasure" hidden somewhere more challenging. Start with short trails and gradually increase the length and complexity.

  • Elevate The Challenge: Start hiding treats in more challenging locations, such as different heights or inside puzzle toys that require manipulation to release the treats.

  • Vary Locations: Don’t always set up the treasure hunt in the same area. Using different rooms or parts of the yard will keep the game interesting for your dog. 

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