Homemade, FUN, and inexpensive dog games are the BEST!
Sugar’s favorite is the Tennis Ball Cupcakes, also known as the Muffin Tin Game. I did not invent this game. Sugar plays this game all the time. It’s her favorite indoor winter game.
What You Need
12 hole muffin tin
12 tennis balls
The PURPOSE of Tennis Balls cupcakes is for your dog to use his/her nose to find the treat(s) in the tin, under the tennis balls.
This year, I made a modification to the game. I placed a different color tennis ball.
Does it matter? Many say that dogs are color blinded and don’t see colors. Actually, for my readings dogs see the colors green, yellow and orange as yellowish. Dogs see violet and blue as blue and blue-green as a gray. From this, Sugar definitely sees the color difference of the tennis balls.
Set-Up the GAME
Place the 12 tennis balls in the tin. Place 1 treat under the different colored tennis ball. Place the tin on the floor. If this is your dog’s 1st time to play, let him/her sniff.
This is a good game to reinforce the command sit (down), stay and go commands.
Let your dog sniff and find the treat under the tennis ball. Some dogs will just use their nose to sniff and nudge the balls out of the tin. Dog’s like Sugar will sniff, grab and drop the ball. Observe your dog while playing this game.
Some dogs might need encouragement, lift a tennis ball and show him/her the treat.
Remember to Have FUN!
If your dog is food motivated,Tennis Ball Cupcakes is a FUN PAWsome game to play. It is a wonderful and low-cost game to play with your dog, especially on winter days when its very COLD and you are stuck in the house.
Give Tennis Ball Cupcakes a try.
We will continue to share more dog games in our future posts. If you follow GoldenWoofs on Instagram, you’ve seen some of Sugar’s 15 seconds Game of the Day videos. We also shared it on our FB Golden Woofs Page.
Jana Rade says
Yeah, this is a great game, Cookie likes it too.
Dr. Eloise bright says
That is such a great idea! It is totally like one of those fancy games by Nina Ottoson, but practically free (except for buying a few extra tennis balls I suppose. I will definitely be recommending this to some of my clients with dogs who have separation anxiety or need to occupy their minds a little. Can’t wait to see what other games you play with your lucky dog!
I am so ‘getting’ one of these for BD he will love it!!
Of fun! I’ll have to try that with our kids.
Monty and Harlow
Retro rover says
What a fun looking game
Amy and Toby says
This is a clever idea Sugar!
cool idea… when i saw the balls i thought you were baking the.m
I think I would enjoy this game! I play some games where I sniff out the treat.
Frankie and Ernie says
THAT is a super GRRRRREAT Treat TOY!!! Bravo fur thinking of it.
Hi Sugar, this is a great game – we love these types of ‘mental exercise’ toys and you are right – this is a nice inexpensive one that serves the same purpose! Thanks for joining the Hop.
Roxy the traveling dog says
I can see Torrey liking that. I will have to give it a try.
This looks like a very fun game…… I am going to find my Mom right now and tell her about this 🙂
Two French Bulldogs says
I have GOT to try this!
Nailah Bone says
That’s a fun game! 🙂 I’ve never tried it with different colored balls, might give that a try next time!
easy rider says
Sugar, that’s a fabulous idea. And I bet it would be a super game for Goose who was looking for a funny puzzle game. Have a super golden friday :o)
Madi and Mom says
YOUR MOM COMES UP WITH THE BESTEST IDEAS AND FUNNIEST GAMES…….
BUT WE ALL KNOW THE STAR IS SUGAR CAUSE SHE IS SMART AND BEAUTIFUL
HUGS MADI OUR BFFF
Great idea, but we aren’t interested in tennis balls, so we only have like two around the house. Sugar is such a smart girl!
Oz the Terrier says
I am going to have to try this game! I love tennis balls and I love treats…that should make the game pretty easy, so long as I remember to use my nose. BOL Have a great weekend Sugar and Sugar’s mom!
Talent Hounds says
Clever game Sugar! Have a great weekend!
Reilly & Denny says
that is an excellent game – we will have to get some extra tennis balls !
Brian Frum says
That is such a clever idea! Maybe we will try that with our mice toys!
Molly The Wally says
Sugar that is a well brilliant idea. We must give it a go. Nice one. Have a fabulous Friday.
Best wishes Molly
And, since I’m extremely food-motivated, I’ll forward this to my mom 😉
Fantastic idea. We’ll try that with Roxy….
XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy
What a great and fun game
M. K. Clinton says
What a fun exercise to do with Sugar. She impresses me every day. I pinned several of her beautiful photos on Pinterest. Thanks for sharing them.
Sand Spring Chesapeakes says
That is awesome, we will have to try that!
FUN. Will have to try this with Kona and Bongo.
BJ PUP says
Suger has a sniffer. She found the treat so quickly. mom would have to devise a way to make the game last longer.
Dolly the Doxie says
That sure looks like fun Sugar! Unfortunately I am not allowed to have tennis balls because I destroy them. Love Dolly
Mitch and Molly says
OMD – now you know we have to give this one a try, Sugar! Fun – fun ☺
Love ya lots♥
Mitch and Molly
Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady says
What a great idea for a game!!! I’m going to try that!
Thanks for sharing!
Have a great weekend!
Frum da pack at Love is being owned by a husky
Jan K says
Sugar looks like she loves her tennis balls! I love the way she picked that one up, and set it down and nudged it a little before grabbing the treat. I have to try this with my dogs….I’d love to see how differently they might each do it, especially golden retriever vs beagle.
that is a really cool idea. Looks like fun.
Murphy & Stanley says
Tennis balls – now you’re talking my language!! We just stopped over real fast since we are in Sochi competing in the Olympics. Make sure when you watch TV you look to see us!
Your Olympic Pals,
Murphy & Stanley
The OP Pack says
We think that looks like a fun game. Sugar is a lot gentler and polite about getting her treat than we think we might be:) Mom says it might be hard to find 12 tennis balls here tonight because some pups have a liking for destroying them. Shopping tomorrow maybe, Mom?
Woos – Phantom, Ciara, and Lightning
I’ve done this for Petal before. Very fun and a great way to entertain your dog. I find it pretty entertaining too, watching Petal figure it out. 🙂 Great video, thanks for sharing!
Dory and her Mama says
That looks like such a fun game Sugar!! Thanks for showing us how to play it!!
Dory, Jakey, Arty & Bilbo
Sarah @ Lolathepitty.com says
I saw this on G+ and thought it was such a great idea! And a heck of a lot cheaper than buying the dog puzzles ;). THanks for sharing.
Dogs N Pawz says
What a great game! I may have to try it with my three!
Diane @ To Dog With Love says
Great idea! We’ll have to try this!
Diane and Rocco
We’re going to have to give this game a try. Teach would have lots of fun. He would be the type that uses his nose to nudge the tennis balls out of the way. With a snout his size you have to use it … right?! LOL!!
Fun! What a very creative game. I’ll have to give it a try. Now, just to find 12 tennis balls. Maya tried to eat the last one we had. 🙂
Ann Staub says
This just looks like the coolest game… we are going to try it I think sometime. But I need some more tennis balls!
2 brown dawgs says
What a great idea!
Cathy C. Bennett says
What a terrific idea! The weather has been so ridiculous lately with freezing temps and snow, I’m running to the store today!!!!
Thanks for a great post – I’ll be sure to let you know how things turn out!
What a great idea, especially if you have bunch of tennis balls, it’s a fun winter game to play to help your dogs develop their noses!
Liz (Woof Woof Mama) says
Such a GREAT idea! Daisy & I can’t wait to play…we love games and puzzles!
Cattle Aussies~Bella, Terra, & Kronos says
We love playing that game 🙂