A staple of summer is a good 4th of July BBQ. It is the time for good food, good friends, and good memories. And the best part of summertime cookouts is that our family pets get to be a part of it as well. However, if you are attending a dog-friendly BBQ this 4th of July make sure you brush up on these etiquette tips.
Bring a leash
Even if you are going to a friend’s house with a fenced in backyard you will want to bring a leash with you. This way, if they start exploring the food table or grill a little too closely then you’ll be able to keep them close by and under control until the food has safely been put away.
Refresh training commands ahead of time
Work on things like not jumping on people. Also, work on the top three commands; stay, sit, and come. When your dog is a good listener it will be so much easier to take them out and about with you. Don’t forget to keep a baggy of treats in your pocket as an incentive for them to keep up the good work during the party.
Don’t be shy about how people interact with your dog
You don’t have to cater to anyone when it comes to how you want your dog’s experience to be. If you feel safer with them on a leash by your side don’t feel pressured by someone that says let them off leash. Don’t let anyone feed them food that you don’t want them to have. People LOVE to feed dogs treats but stick to your guns about your dog’s diet. After all, you’re the one that has to deal with any stomach aches if they eat something that doesn’t agree with them.
Keep an eye on them at all times
There is often a lot of mischief that a dog can get into at a party. That’s why you really need to know what they are up to at any given moment. Here are just a few other things to be on the lookout for:
- Interactions with children
- Getting into the trash
- Unattended plates of food
- Other party goer’s offering food treats to your pooch
- If they are tethered check on them often
- Unattended alcoholic beverages
- Gates left open
- Open flame like candles, tiki torches, fire pits or fireworks.
- All citronella products – these are toxic to dogs
- General anxious or rowdy behavior (they could be getting overwhelmed)
Don’t stay for the fireworks
One of the best things you can do for your dog at a BBQ is to take them home before the fireworks start. Our pets are usually terrified of the loud cracks and booms heard throughout the night on the 4th of July. Making sure that they are safe at home during this time is what they really need. We all want to enjoy a good party with family and friends on the 4th of July and it’s even better when our four-legged ones can come too. Be sure to keep them on their best behavior, have your current information on their tags, and most importantly, stay attentive to their needs and whereabouts during the night. Happy 4th to you and your family!