The holiday season is just around the corner. Review your plans for including or managing your dog at upcoming events with family and friends.
If your dog is comfortable with visitors in your home and has basic obedience skills (Sit for Greeting and Go Lie Down) he may be a welcome addition to your party. Your dog should not jump on guests, steal food off coffee tables or chew on purses or shoes. Be your dog’s advocate; make sure everyone understands your expectations. Never allow other people to undermine your dog’s training.
If your dog has problems dealing with groups of people, children and/or strangers, then the best solution might be to exercise your dog before the party starts so he can rest in his crate or a back bedroom during the festivities.
Puppies and reactive dogs can become overstimulated quite easily. High energy children may cause chasing and nipping behaviors in dogs who lack basic obedience and impulse control. Keeping these dogs on leash with constant adult supervision is one solution.
If you need to board your dog for a portion of the holidays, now’s the time to do your research. Visit kennels and talk to the staff. Ask about vaccination and other health requirements. Check references. If you plan to take your dog with you to someone else’s home, be sure to pack his food, treats and toys, as well as his crate, so he has a familiar spot to sleep.
If you plan to hire someone stay in your home to care for your pets, make sure the pet sitters are licensed and insured, and will follow your explicit instructions. If friends or relatives want to help, make sure they understand your rules, expectations and can handle your dog.