Play Monopoly with your dog!!

Do you enjoy a good game of Monopoly? So would your dog!

There is something to discover in everything and learn more about how we can enhance and develop better relationships with our dogs. You start seeing these parallels, the more you are present and engaged in every activity and the better you understand your dog and the relationships you both share.

It came to me a few years ago that the secret of successful and rewarding play and interactions with your dog is Monopoly! In this really quick blog video, I share with you exactly what that learning is and how you can see results today.

All too often, we see dogs that just aren’t “in” the game or present, feeling pressured to play by their owners who also just aren’t engaged in the game, aren’t enjoying it and have forgotten the main purpose of play – FUN!

One thing is for sure, if you have been struggling to develop great play with your dog and enjoy that super experience in your training, then Monopoly might just help!

  • Zoey Trenkle

    Thanks, Tom! Great points to remember!! I always try to keep that balance in mind. When Leo chases the toy, I try to make sure he eventually catches it and has some time with it. My challenge is to concentrate on fun rather than “he must engage”.

  • AgilePoodle

    Good point Zoey!! As humans, we can forget it isn’t always about work!! When I’m training my dog in agility, he is never more excited and driven than the first practice run he makes. Now that I’m thinking about it, I’m probably the most relaxed at that time too, since I’m evaluating where we are at the start of the session. Once we begin “the work” of the session, he tends to lose focus – I need to work on my balance there. Thanks for timely tip, Tom!!


  • How do you engage a switched off dog to play?? My dog will play until he has completed his agility course.. I try to reward with play after but hes not interested… how do I reward without food?

  • I am guilty of putting a tad too much pressure into a game with my dogs. Must remember to think Monopoly!
    My Springer will usually switch off when tugging (most likely my fault), since watch Pup to Perfection and of course the Absolute Dogs videos he is so much more into the game and really doesn’t let go anymore – I didn’t realise how strong he was!!!

  • Lila

    Thanks for the video blog – love it 🙂 I find it really important to play with the dog ‘properly’ , first thing – a toy is a prey, secondly – the doggie HAS TO win quite a lot (you do allow children to win even though they’re not that good in a game yet, right? 😀 ). With many dogs it’s helpful if we get a bit more passive and it’s them to kill the prey. What I found helpful is watching decoys (good ones obviously 😉 ) playing with young dogs before they even start the real bite work – the dogs confidence and them being proactive is essential in Schutzhund.

  • Anthea Rocker

    Only just watched this Tom – I think I felt pressured to “make” the dog play with Bob – and now I have a Bob who tugs brilliantly as a trick but not as a reward – may work again on this but we are both happier using the Lotus Ball which combines food and play. As I now have Barry and we are just starting out I have found that letting him get the tug has started him bringing it back to me for more tug – it’s harder to get the out because he locks onto the tug so much but I know we are getting there – I am going to keep monopoly in mind in all my training now!

  • Anthea Rocker

    Wow! I watched the blog this morning. Took Bob, Barry and Dylan for a walk this afternoon to the woods and this is what happened. I think I think Barry is gradually transferring his value for a ball or toy to his value to playing with that toy or ball with me. I took off all the pressure from him while we were out today. What happened was Bob found a tennis ball in the woods, Barry wanted it and chased Bob, then gave up and looked back then came back to me. I took a tennis ball out of my pocket and gave it to him. We all continued through the woods, both dogs carrying their balls. We came to a place where I sat down and threw some treats about for Dylan to hunt. Barry and Bob lay down and started chewing the tennis balls. Then Barry got up, came to me and dropped his ball in my open hand! I praised him and threw it for him to retrieve. He brought it back and dropped it again. So the IYC and the toy switch in the den must be having an effect. After our sit down I let him carry the ball again. We played fetch a couple more times. He lost the ball when he dropped it and it rolled into the stream – he doesn’t like water! Stopping worrying about transfer of value or anything and letting the dogs choose worked – thinking of Monopoly is very good advice. Just in case you thought I was ignoring Bob altogether. He dropped his ball and was busy sniffing and then doing some games before being rewarded with being sent to find the rabbits while a lot of this stuff was going down.

  • Anna

    Holly loves people chasing her (people she knows obviously) around the garden, I have especially noticed this with my sister’s partner, every time she sees him they play chase and there is something about his energy levels that fit her perfectly – it is really interesting to observe. I would love to post the video of her being chased around but I don’t know how…