Even the most well-behaved dogs can get out of hand when they're amped up on the exciting sights and smells of an outdoor party at their home. Here are some tips to help your dog stay calm and safe at your next outdoor barbecue.
Tire Them Out
Help your dog burn off some energy by giving him plenty of exercise the day before your outdoor party. Take him for long walks to expend physical energy, but also give him some mentally tiring tasks too. Practice commands like sit and stay. Your goal is to get your dog tuckered out both mentally and physically. The day of the party take the dog for a good half hour walk and try to play with the dog before guests arrive to tire him out.
Consider feeding your dog only half of his normal portion for breakfast. That might seem counterintuitive because a hungry dog might be more likely to beg for food from guests. However, he'll be more liable to obey you when he's hungry and knows you're holding food rewards. Wear a treat pouch to have high-value rewards at the ready.
Keep them Leashed
If your dog is problematic and tends to jump on people, keep them on a short leash when guests arrive. Allow them to greet people with a sniff if your guests are comfortable with dogs. This can help the dog to relax and get through the excitement of visitors coming into their home.
Barbecue Safety Tips
Barbecues and summertime parties can be hazardous for pets. Keep an eye on things to make sure the dog doesn't get a hold of bones that can be choking hazards. Alcohol ingestion is also a danger to dogs, so make sure open beverage containers are out of your pooch's reach. Also, be mindful that your dog doesn't come into contact with toxic insect repellents.
Maintain a firm boundary around from the grill. There's the obvious risk of burns for a large dog who can reach the grill top. Dogs of all sizes might try to lick grease drippings from the ground and swallow gravel along with the grease, which can cause blockages in the digestive tract. Dogs that are fed very high fat foods can experience serious problems, such as pancreatitis. A general rule to play it safe is to keep "human" party foods off limits for your pets.
Sometimes your best bet during an outdoor party is to keep your dog inside in a cool, quiet room of the house. That way the dog can stay calm, comfortable and out of harm's way. Talk to a vet, like Seattle Emergency Veterinary Hospital, for more help.