6 Tips So You Can Take Your Dog to a Restaurant?
As dog owners and lovers, there is nothing we love more than taking our dogs wherever we go! Many of our clients have the ultimate goal of bringing their dog to a patio restaurant but are afraid at how it might go! In this article and video, we cover 6 easy tricks and tips to help you and your dog make mimosas at a Sunday brunch as easy as a walk in the park! If the walk in the park isn't easy, you might want to book an In-Home Private Training Lesson or a Board and Train Program!
Finding Dog Friendly Restaurants
Before we get into the tips for successful dinning, it is important to be able to find places that you can bring your pup. We like to use BringFido before calling a bunch of places only to be rejected. The website allows you to search for restaurants and other dog friendly places near you or where you are vacationing. It is a pretty comprehensive list and has helped us on many a dog training field trip. If there is a restaurant that you want to go to and you don't see it listed here, it's always a good idea to call ahead and ensure that your dog will be allowed there.
1. Train and Socialize Before the Restaurant
The first piece of advice for getting your dog to do well at a restaurant patio is to make sure your dog is trained and well socialized. This step seems obvious, but too often people bring their dogs to places when they should not. Not only is this dangerous, but it also ruins the dining experience for others. If you are looking for ideas on training and socialization, we have a ton of great articles in our Dog Learning Center.
2. Get Lots of Exercise the Morning You Want to Go Out
Before bringing your dog to the patio restaurant, you should get them as much exercise as possible. This will not only set them up for success, but also make it fair since we will be telling them to sit still for a few hours. The easiest way to get your dog tired is with a structured heel command. If you want some pointers on heel check out Puppy's First Walk, it has great ideas for walking any dog. You could also get a price quote for a trainer to work with you and your dog.
3. Feed your Dog Before Taking Them With
You should also make sure to feed your dogs before you go to the restaurant, that way it is not unfair for them to watch you each for a few hours. We have reviewed 2 different feeders that can help make feeding time more engaging for your dog. Take a look at the Kong Wobbler and Snuffle Mats. Using tools like these will help your dog be more calm and relaxed because they spent a lot of mental energy working towards getting their meal.
4. Use a Down Stay at the Restaurant
Obedience is crucial for taking your dog to a patio as well. We typically use a down stay, as this gives us the most control. Make sure your dog is proficient at their down stays and can hold this around food, people, noises, and other dogs. If your pup is struggling to achieve this an experienced trainer can help you work through it and get your pup where they need to be for your dinning enjoyment!
5. Make Sure They are in a Good Spot
When putting your dog into their stay, we recommend putting them in an area that is not in the way. Ask for a table that is not in the middle of the restaurant. Put your dogs in a down stay so that you are in between your dog and other patrons. A public patio can be hectic, and often there is a ton going on. Because of this, make sure you are staying alert and paying attention to your dog. If they make a mistake, having the leash in hand or close to you is important so you can stop them immediately.
6. Your Pup Doesn't Have to Greet Every Other Restaurant Guest
Keep in mind your dog does not need to say hi to everyone! This also applies to any other public place you go. Feel comfortable to say no even if your dog loves people. This can easily lead to your dog getting too excited once they say hi to someone causing them to break their commands. If you are ready to let your dog say hi, make sure you have the leash in hand, and tell your dog free. The goal here is to maximize control, so keeping a short leash is best.
Things You Might Want to Bring when Taking your Dog Out to Eat
Dinning Out with Your Pup Success!
With these 6 steps to eating out with your dog will be enjoyable for you, your pup and everyone else on the restaurant's patio. We have a ton of other videos that can help with this process check out the rest of our learning center!
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