The Best Activities and Exercises for a Working Kelpie

The Best Activities and Exercises for a Working Kelpie

Are you the proud owner of a working Kelpie? These intelligent and energetic dogs thrive on physical and mental stimulation. To keep them happy and healthy, it is essential to provide them with the right activities and exercises. In this article, we will explore the best activities and exercises that are specifically tailored to meet the needs of a working Kelpie. Whether you are looking for ideas to keep your Kelpie entertained or want to enhance their working abilities, you’ll find everything you need to know here. Let’s dive in and discover the most effective ways to keep your working Kelpie engaged and fulfilled.

Training Exercises

Basic obedience training

Basic obedience training is essential for a working Kelpie. It teaches them fundamental commands that will make them well-behaved and responsive to their owners. Here are a few basic obedience exercises to consider:

  1. Sit: Teaching your Kelpie to sit on command is a great starting point. Begin by holding a treat close to their nose, then raise your hand slowly, causing their head to follow the treat and their bottom to lower. Once they are in a sitting position, give the command "sit" and reward them with the treat.

  2. Stay: Teaching your Kelpie to stay is crucial for their safety. Start by asking them to sit, then hold your hand up and say "stay" while taking a step back. Gradually increase the distance and duration of the stay, rewarding them for maintaining the position. Remember to use a release command like "okay" to let them know when they can move.

  3. Come: Teaching your Kelpie to come when called is vital, especially during off-leash activities. Begin by attaching a long leash to their collar. Step back a few feet, crouch down, and excitedly say their name followed by the command "come." Gently pull on the leash if necessary to guide them towards you. Reward them with treats and praise when they reach you.

Agility training

Agility training is a fantastic way to keep your working Kelpie physically and mentally stimulated. It helps improve their coordination, speed, and overall fitness. Consider incorporating the following agility exercises into your Kelpie’s routine:

  1. Weave poles: Set up a line of poles or cones and guide your Kelpie through them, encouraging them to weave in and out. Start with widely spaced poles and gradually reduce the gap as they become more comfortable. Use treats or toys as rewards to motivate them.

  2. Tunnel runs: Introduce your Kelpie to a tunnel and encourage them to run through it. Start with a short tunnel and gradually increase the length as they gain confidence. Use positive reinforcement and rewards to make it an enjoyable experience for them.

  3. Jumping exercises: Set up low hurdles or jumps for your Kelpie to jump over. Begin with low heights and gradually raise them as they become more proficient. Remember to use positive reinforcement and treats to keep them motivated and engaged.

Trick training

Trick training is not only entertaining but also mentally stimulating for your working Kelpie. It helps build a stronger bond between you and your dog while enhancing their problem-solving abilities. Here are a few fun tricks to teach your Kelpie:

  1. Paw shake: Start by giving the command "paw" and gently lift one of their front paws. Reward them with a treat and praise. Repeat this until they start lifting their paw on their own when you say "paw." Gradually phase out the physical assistance and only reward them when they lift their paw without your help.

  2. Roll over: Begin by asking your Kelpie to lie down. Hold a treat close to their nose and slowly move it towards their shoulder, encouraging them to roll over onto their side. Once they complete the roll, reward them with the treat and praise. Practice this regularly until they can roll over with just the command.

  3. Play dead: Start with your Kelpie in a lying down position. Hold a treat close to their nose and slowly move it towards the ground, causing them to roll onto their back. As soon as they are lying on their back, reward them with the treat and praise. With consistent practice, they will learn to play dead on command.

Remember to keep training sessions short, fun, and positive. Reward your Kelpie with treats, praise, and playtime to reinforce their good behavior and progress.

Physical Activities

Running or Jogging

Running or jogging is an excellent way to keep your working Kelpie physically active and mentally stimulated. These energetic dogs thrive on exercise, and a daily run or jog can provide them with the physical outlet they need to stay healthy and happy. Whether you prefer a brisk jog around the neighborhood or a long run in the park, your Kelpie will eagerly join you in this high-energy activity.


Swimming is another fantastic activity that can benefit your working Kelpie in multiple ways. Not only does it provide a full-body workout, but it is also a low-impact exercise that is gentle on their joints. Kelpies are natural swimmers and are often drawn to water, making this activity even more enjoyable for them. So, take your Kelpie to a nearby lake, river, or dog-friendly beach, and let them dive in and swim to their heart’s content.

Playing Fetch

Playing fetch is a classic game that Kelpies absolutely adore. These intelligent and active dogs excel at retrieving, and playing fetch allows them to burn off excess energy while engaging their natural instincts. Find an open space, such as a backyard or a dog park, and throw a ball or a frisbee for your Kelpie to chase and bring back. This activity not only provides physical exercise but also mental stimulation as they use their problem-solving skills to fetch and return the object.

Remember, regular physical activities are essential for the overall well-being of your working Kelpie. Incorporate running or jogging, swimming, and playing fetch into their routine, and watch them thrive both physically and mentally.

Mental Stimulation

Puzzle Toys

One of the best ways to provide mental stimulation for a working Kelpie is through puzzle toys. These toys are designed to challenge and engage your dog’s mind, keeping them entertained for hours. Puzzle toys come in various shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common – they require your dog to solve a problem to obtain a reward.

There are many different types of puzzle toys available for dogs, such as treat-dispensing toys and interactive puzzle games. These toys can be filled with treats or your Kelpie’s favorite food, encouraging them to use their problem-solving skills to figure out how to access the reward. Not only do puzzle toys keep your dog mentally stimulated, but they also provide a great source of entertainment and prevent boredom.

Scent Work

Kelpies are known for their excellent sense of smell, and engaging them in scent work activities is a fantastic way to provide mental stimulation. Scent work involves teaching your Kelpie to use their nose to locate specific scents or objects. This activity taps into their natural instincts and allows them to exercise their brain while having fun.

To start scent work with your Kelpie, you can begin by hiding treats or toys in various locations around your home or backyard. Encourage your dog to use their nose to find the hidden items, rewarding them with praise and treats when they successfully locate them. As your Kelpie becomes more proficient, you can advance to more challenging scent work games, such as tracking scents outdoors or participating in scent detection classes.

Hide and Seek Games

Playing hide and seek games with your working Kelpie is not only a great way to bond with your dog but also provides mental stimulation. These games tap into your dog’s natural hunting instincts and require them to use their senses to locate you or hidden objects.

To play hide and seek with your Kelpie, start by having them sit and stay while you find a hiding spot. Once you’re hidden, call your dog’s name or use a cue word to let them know it’s time to find you. Encourage them with excited praise as they search for you, and reward them with treats or a game of tug-of-war when they successfully locate you.

You can also adapt hide and seek games by hiding toys or treats around your home or yard and encouraging your Kelpie to find them. This activity provides both mental and physical stimulation, keeping your working Kelpie engaged and entertained.

By incorporating puzzle toys, scent work, and hide and seek games into your working Kelpie’s routine, you can provide them with the mental stimulation they need to stay happy and healthy. These activities not only exercise their brain but also strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend.

The Best Activities and Exercises for a Working Kelpie

In conclusion, keeping a working Kelpie physically and mentally stimulated is crucial for their overall well-being. Engaging in activities such as herding, agility training, and obedience exercises not only provides them with an outlet for their high energy levels but also helps them develop their natural instincts and abilities. Regular exercise, combined with mental stimulation through puzzle toys and interactive games, will ensure that your working Kelpie remains happy, healthy, and fulfilled. Remember to consult with a professional trainer or behaviorist to tailor an exercise routine that suits your Kelpie’s specific needs and abilities. By investing time and effort into providing the best activities and exercises for your working Kelpie, you can enjoy a strong bond and a harmonious partnership with your loyal and hardworking companion.