There was a time in the not-too-distant past when bringing your pet along to a restaurant was unheard of. Thanks to our increasingly pet-centric society (yay!), restaurants all over the country are beginning to allow pets on the patios. Some are even catering to pets by offering water bowls and “doggie menus”.

Dining out with pets is not without it’s challenges, of course, but Union Lake Veterinary Hospital wants to get you and your pet ready to enjoy a meal together. Check out our practical tips for etiquette and safety before you make a foray into dining out with pets.

Dining Out With Pets 101

  • Make sure your pet is well behaved around other people, pets, and especially children.
  • Keep your dog leashed at all times, and as close to your table or chair as possible so as not to be in the way of the servers and other guests.
  • Keep your pet at home if he or she is prone to anxiousness, aggressiveness, or extreme shyness in social situations.
  • Never tie your dog to the table, as this can result in spilled food and beverages if he or she is strong enough to move the table.
  • Most establishments don’t allow pets to drink or eat out of non-disposable dishware, so bring a bowl for your pet’s water or ask for a plastic cup if necessary.
  • Of course, make sure to clean up after your pet. Bring plastic baggies and take pets to a designated area for a potty break.
  • Policies and management change frequently in the foodservice industry, so it’s always a good idea to call ahead and check with the establishment to be sure that pets are allowed and find out what their specific rules and regulations are regarding animals.

Proper obedience training is essential for success when it comes to bringing your pet to a public place. We are proud to offer a variety of positive-reinforcement training classes aimed at helping dogs of every age and stage. Give us a call for more information.

Safety First

Because preserving your pet’s health and wellbeing is important no matter where you go, consider the following before you head out with your four-legged dinner date:

  • Make sure your pet is wearing his or her collar with current ID tags, and that your pet’s microchip has been updated if necessary.
  • For the safety of your pet and any others that may be nearby, keep your pet up to date on his or her vaccines and parasite preventives.
  • If the day is hot and humid, do your pet a favor and let him or her relax at home where it’s cool.
  • Don’t feed your pet table scraps, as many people foods can cause intestinal distress or be toxic to pets. Bring along a few treats if you must give your pet something.

Don’t hesitate to contact your ULVH team with any questions or concerns regarding dining out with pets. Bon appetit!