Picnics have long been a staple of summer fun. So why not plan a dog-friendly picnic that you can enjoy with your best buddy on earth? Here are 10 easy tips for having a successful picnic with your pooch in tow.
1. Pick a dog-friendly location for your picnic.
Make sure dogs are permitted before you bring your dog along. Be careful not to plan your picnic at an off-the-leash dog park, though—bringing food into such an environment can spell big trouble as dogs may rush toward the savory smells of your picnic basket.
2. Walk your dog before the picnic.
This will help get rid of some of your dog’s excess energy and improve the odds that he will be on his best behavior—which will make the picnic more enjoyable for everyone involved.
3. Bring along his favorite toys.
Pack his Frisbee, tennis ball, or whatever toys are his faves. He’s sure to enjoy a game of catch after dinner—and the exercise will be good for you, too!
4. Some Shade.
Set up shop in an area that allows your dog to have some time in the shade. Shade helps to keep him cool on warm days.
5. Pack lots of water.
Anytime you plan to spend time with your dog outdoors you should take plenty of water along to avoid dehydration. Although some picnic areas have water fountains, others don’t, so plan on bringing your own. If it’s going to be really hot, you might even pack some ice cubes to add to Fluffy’s water dish.
6. Bring his usual food along.
Even if you plan to share some of your food, be sure to bring along your dog’s usual food for his main meal. Sharing too many table foods—particularly if your dog is not accustomed to it—can upset your dog’s stomach and ruin the party for everyone.
7. Don’t share these foods with Fido.
There are foods that are strictly off-limits for your furry friend. Common picnic foods that are dangerous to your dog include:
- Chicken with bones in it
- Grapes and raisins
8. Bring plenty of treats.
You’ll want to have a variety of treats on hand to reward your dog for good behavior, and also just to add to his enjoyment of a special day. A dog chew that will last awhile is a good choice, as well—especially when it comes time for you to enjoy your meal.
9. Make sure your dog is on a leash and that his ID tags are up to date.
Keeping your dog leashed is not only required in many parks, but it also helps prevent him from wandering off and getting lost. Make sure his ID tags are up to date or that he is microchipped just in case. And have a recent photo handy in the event that you need help finding him.
10. Bring along a blanket or his dog bed.
At some point, your best friend is going to tire out, so you’ll want to have his favorite blanket or dog bed with you. Place it under a shady tree so he can take a quick “dog” nap or just chill out.
Following these tips can help you have a safe and fun picnic experience with your four-legged friend!
Have you taken your dog on picnics or outings with you? We’d love to hear about it! Please share your experience below.