For dog lovers, one of the best ways to enjoy your time out of the house is by bringing furry friends along for the trip. If you’ve been invited to a holiday party or brunch event at a restaurant, you might be thinking about the best guidelines to follow if you want to bring your dog. After all, it can be unpleasant for both of you when you have to leave home and can’t take your pet along with you.

Several restaurants and cafes have opened their doors to dog guests, because you’re not at all alone in your desire to include your pet in your brunch adventures.

With the best of these options being here at The Refuge on one of our special Barkin’ Brunch events on select Sundays!

In this article, we’ll cover ten tips you can try in order to make the most out of having brunch with your dog.

1- Check Your Options

Before taking your dog to a party or brunch event, take a moment to determine whether dogs are allowed at the venue and if there are any specific rules you need to follow. Part of what makes taking your dog to brunch a fun experience is being prepared so that you can fully engage with the experience.

2- Do a Pre-Visit

Before you attend the event, take your dog on a walk past the venue you’ll be visiting to get him or her acclimated to the area. Dogs tend to have more positive experiences when they’re in an area they’ve seen and interacted with before. Plus, when you walk past the location, you can check for anything that may present an issue for your pet.

3- Bring an Age-Appropriate Dog

While it may seem like a good idea to get young puppies comfortable with new places and people as soon as possible, take a second to consider your dog’s well-being. Puppies who don’t have all of their vaccinations are especially at risk of becoming sick when they’re introduced to new environments.

Furthermore, young puppies may still need training before they’ll be able to sit still long enough for family celebrations, holiday parties, and other food-related events to commence. As such, it’s important to bring a dog that’s old enough to handle this new situation well.

4- Get the Zoomies Out

It’s normal for dogs of all ages to get excited when they’re visiting a new place. They want to run around, explore, interact with people, and play with anything and everything they can. Because of this, it’s a good idea to take your dog on a long walk or a brisk jog before you reach the venue. Ensuring that your pet has expended all of his or her pent-up energy creates a recipe for success when you’re going to be in a stimulating environment.

5- Bring Supplies

When you’re attending a brunch event with your dog, make sure you bring a few supplies with you, such as toys. You’ll want your pet to have something to play with in order to keep himself or herself occupied while you eat with your friends, family, or colleagues.

6- Share Appropriate Food

If you’re at a venue where any sort of catering is available, it’s natural that your dog is going to be curious about what you’re eating. If you tend to offer your pet small pieces of human food at home, he or she might expect to indulge in a treat while you’re at brunch. If the location serves dog-friendly food, feel free to share a little with your pet. Don’t overdo it, as human food is calorie-rich and can lead to health issues if you feed a dog too much of it.

Dog-safe foods include:

  • Cheese
  • Apples (no core)
  • Peanut Butter
  • Plain Yogurt
  • Sweet Potatoes (unseasoned)
  • Boiled Eggs
  • Various Meats (unseasoned)

Brunch foods to AVOID giving dogs include:

  • Grapes/Raisins
  • Garlic/Onions
  • Avocados
  • Chocolate
  • Coffee
  • Wine
  • Oils
  • Seasoning
  • Fruit Pits

7- Provide Water

Your dog is likely going to get thirsty during brunch, especially if the two of you have just completed a long or vigorous walk. Make sure that your dog has an adequate supply of water to drink during your brunch session.

8- Keep Your Dog Near You

As a responsible pet owner, keeping your dog close to you when you’re in a public setting probably comes as second nature. If you’re at a restaurant, it’s important to keep your dog near where you’re sitting. This way, people won’t accidentally step on their paws or tails when they walk by. Furthermore, keeping your dog close will help ensure that he or she remains well-behaved throughout the event.

9- Be Mindful of the Weather

If you’re having brunch outside, take a look at the weather forecast before you leave and be aware of the outdoor temperature throughout your visit. If it starts getting too hot or cold for you, it’s probably also too hot or cold for your dog. By maintaining this awareness, you can help ensure that each of you has fun and remains comfortable at the same time.

10- Pay Attention to His/Her Cues

Pets who are relatively new to public settings might have a more difficult time adjusting to brunch events than more social animals. If this is your first time taking your dog to brunch with you, keep an eye on his or her cues. Look your pet over to make sure they are not becoming irritable, scared, annoyed, or on high alert during the event. If or when your pet starts exhibiting signs that it’s time to go home, start winding down the event and work on saying your goodbyes so that you can take your dog home.

Bringing your dog with you to various events can help him or her develop better social skills and reduce the odds of your pet getting anxious in a new environment. Plus, dogs enjoy being part of whatever their human friends are doing. It can be very beneficial to take your dog to brunch with you, so by all means, give it a try. Your dog will thank you, and if you follow these tips, your pet will be such a hit that your brunch-mates will thank you too.