Pet Etiquette 101- The Do’s and Don’ts for your Furry Friend

Good manners apply to every aspect of our lives- from human behavior to that of our pet companions. That being said, most of the behavior that is perceived as “bad manners” when it comes to pets, actually has to do with that of the owner! While pets bring immense joy and companionship to our lives, it’s important to be aware of pet etiquette to ensure friendly interactions with both humans and other animals. Whether you’re taking your dog for a stroll or hosting guests at home, here are some key guidelines to keep in mind when it comes to “petiquette”: 

  • Bringing Your Dog in Public: When bringing your dog in public spaces, such as parks or sidewalks, it’s important to make sure they are well-behaved and under control. Keep your dog on a leash at all times unless in designated off-leash areas (and your companion isn’t a runner)  and be mindful of other pedestrians and their pets. Always clean up after your dog to maintain cleanliness and respect for the environment. 
  • Greeting Someone Arriving at Your Home: If you have a pet, it’s important to consider your guests’ comfort levels and any potential allergies or fears they may have. Train your pet to greet visitors calmly and refrain from jumping or excessive barking. Allow guests to initiate contact with your pet ( if they choose), and make sure your furry friend respects their personal space. (If Fido is a jumper or a licker, try putting him in a safe spot for the visit or only let him greet once he is calm). If you go to someone else’s home that has a pet, try winning both the pet and the owner over with the best host gifts for pet owners. 
  • Picking Up After Your Pet: Whether in public parks, sidewalks, or communal areas, always pick up after your pet. Carry waste bags during walks and promptly dispose of any droppings in designated bins. Leaving pet waste behind is not only unsightly but also unhygienic and disrespectful to others sharing the space. There is nothing worse than stepping in…. well you know what!
  • When Not to Bring Your Pet to a Restaurant: While many restaurants welcome well-behaved pets in outdoor seating areas, it’s crucial to consider the establishment’s policies and other diners’ preferences. Avoid bringing your pet to indoor dining areas, especially if they are not used to doing this or if they might cause disruption to other patrons. Additionally, refrain from bringing pets to restaurants during peak hours or crowded settings. It doesn’t mean you’re not an animal lover if you don’t want to share your dining space with them!
  • When to and Not to Bring Your Pet to the Dog Park: Dog parks offer a wonderful opportunity for pets to socialize and exercise, but it’s important to understand a pet’s personality and behavior before visiting. If your dog is a bit on the aggressive side or likes to be the Alpha, it may be best to avoid crowded dog parks to prevent any possible conflicts. Also, if your pet is unvaccinated or prone to illness, consider other ways to provide exercise  and bonding time with your dog

Practicing pet etiquette involves being considerate of others’ comfort and safety while spending time with your furry companion. By following these guidelines, you can enjoy a day out on the town (or at your home) with your pet while respecting those around you. 

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