Fall, especially here in the Midwest, is a beautiful time of year. The air is crisp after a summer of heavy humidity, the colors are vibrant, and the footwear is more attractive. Fall is also a great time to get out with Fido. Most breeds can better withstand the mild temperatures of fall where the summer might have been too hot for breeds like the golden retriever and the bulldog (each for their own reasons). I know my own dogs are a little more hesitant to come in from the yard when called during the fall.

Here are 5 great activities that fill be great for the whole pack:

  1. Hiking

Taking your dog on a fall hike can be a great time for you and for him. Shake it up from your daily walk, drive to a local trail (such as the rail trail), and get your dose of fresh air and beautiful scenery. Don’t forget your portable water dish for Fido and if it’s more than a few miles, maybe a snack for you both.

  1. Pumpkin Patch 

That’s right. They’re not just for elementary field trips anymore. Many pumpkin patches have expanded their offerings to include lots of fun fall activities and the best food fall has to offer. Your dog should be welcomed so long as they are well behaved around kids.

  1. Playing in the leaves

You had to rake them up anyway, right? Let Fido play in them and make this mundane chore more fun for you both. Your dog will love running through the leaves and playing chase or fetch with you.

  1. Apple Picking 

This is one of my all-time favorite fall activities. Growing up with a small apple orchard, our dogs were always there as we were picking apples or pressing cider. Your local apple orchards should have lots of goodies for you and your four-legged friend. Our dogs have always loved taking a nibble of the apples that fell to the ground. Keeping Fido on-leash will probably be necessary at your local orchard.

  1. Bake up homemade treats 

If your dogs are anything like mine, they are always within sight when you’re in the kitchen. They enjoy this time following you around and begging for some scraps. Baking and fall really go hand-in-hand. I always start baking more in the fall and continue right through the New Year. So why not bake some treats for Fido? Easy and fun recipes and everywhere, including here and here.
If these are too adventurous or your dog isn’t exactly behaved enough for public expeditions (it’s ok, we know you’re working on it) then curl up and re-watch your favorite fall classic with your pooch or spend a little extra time in the backyard throwing the ball since the weather is so nice. Your dog would probably also enjoy spending time with you while you roast marshmallows and hot dogs over an open fire in the backyard. There are so many opportunities in the fall to spend quality time with your dog. Be creative and take advantage of the incredible weather!