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Memorial Day: Awesome Party Ideas for Pet Owners
Memorial Day is a time to remember our loved ones who served in the US Armed Forces, and it’s also typically regarded as the start of summer. While some people take the opportunity to travel and visit with their families during this time, many Americans choose to celebrate with a party, and if you have a pet, there are a few things you’ll want to consider. Keeping him safe and happy during the festivities will be a priority, but you can also think about including him in the fun, especially if the party will be at your home.
The good news is that there are many things you can do to have a fantastic party this Memorial Day with your dog. Think about how to keep him safe while you have guests over; if he tends to wander, for instance, make sure there’s only one entrance/exit and keep him contained to a fenced-in backyard. If he’s a senior or has allergies, make sure you let guests know not to give him scraps or extra food, and provide several places for people to throw away their trash so that plates and cups won’t be left sitting around. Keep in mind that some guests may want to bring their own pet (especially if it’s a service animal), so you’ll need to prepare.
Throwing a fun Memorial Day bash with your pup will likely be the highlight of your early summer; here are a few tips on how to do it right.
Know Your Grill Safety
Memorial Day and grilling out go together like peanut butter and jelly, and it’s a great way to save money if you have a lot of guests since hot dogs and hamburgers will go a long way. However, it’s imperative to know your grill safety before you get started. Whether you have a gas or charcoal setup, being prepared will help to prevent accidents and will keep everyone safe. For gas grills, check the lines and hoses for cracks or leaks before firing it up. Drip pans should be checked often to make sure they aren’t overfull and to prevent your pup from sniffing around too close to the grill. Also, always allow for plenty of ventilation in the area and never place the grill in a tent or closer than ten feet from a structure.
Fill in Your Guests
When you have a lot of people over to your home, it’s important to let them know about any potential issues with your pet. With so much activity, it can be easy to overlook what your dog is up to, especially if he’s crafty when it comes to snatching food. Let everyone know not to feed your pet, and give them plenty of areas to dispose of their trash (preferably cans with lids).
Give Your Pup a Place to Rest
It’s crucial not to underestimate the amount of time you’ll need to spend tending to your guests; when you’re having fun and staying busy, you may not notice when your pet needs a little break from all the activity. Even if he’s enjoying the petting and attention, it can be overwhelming for a dog to spend time in a large group of people, especially if he’s not used to being around strangers. Give him plenty of time to get away for a breather in an area away from the party (such as a bedroom you can close the door to).
Keep Everyone Comfortable
While many people love dogs, it’s important to keep in mind that perhaps not all of your guests will feel that way. Some people have a fear of dogs — even if they’re not large animals — and others don’t like having someone else’s pet jumping up on them. In order to keep your guests comfortable, make sure your dog is well-trained and behaves during the party. A few weeks beforehand, prepare by teaching him a few simple commands so he’ll refrain from jumping or barking; this will help everyone have a great time.
Memorial Day is a time for people to come together, and there’s no better way to make that happen than by hosting a party. And when you can include your dog, the day will be even more enjoyable. Plan ahead to ensure that your party goes off without a hitch.
Carrie Spencer created TheSpencersAdventures.net to share her family’s homesteading adventures. On the site, she shares tips on living self-sufficiently, fruit and vegetable gardening, parenting, conservation, and more. She and her wife have 3 kids, 2 dogs, 4 cats, 3 goats, 32 chickens, and a whole bunch of bees. Their goal to live as self-sufficiently and environmentally-consciously as possible.
How to Keep Your Dog Safe During a Move
Dog owners who are contemplating a move to a new house need to take a few precautions because dogs sometimes get stressed out or even lost during a move. Read on for tips on what features to look for in your new home and how to move your dog safely.
Dog-friendly home features to look for
It’s a good idea to look at your prospective new home from your dog’s point of view. For instance, an older dog might have trouble with stairs. Be sure to examine the stairs inside and outside the house.
A fully enclosed fenced yard is a godsend for dog owners. Letting your dog go outside to relieve himself is a lot easier than leashing him and taking him for a walk three or four times a day. If your new home doesn’t have a fenced-in yard, consider where you might be able to put a fence. A fenced yard keeps your pup safe from most neighborhood dangers and is an affordable investment. According to HomeAdvisor, the average price to install a wood fence is between $1,281 and $2,737. Many dog rescue agencies will not place a dog in a home without a fence.
Keep your dog safe during the move
To avoid losing your dog during your move, err on the side of caution. It’s a good idea to hire movers so they can do the work while you keep an eye on your pup.
Keep your dog’s routine as consistent as possible. For example, feed him and walk him at the same time. If you can’t hire movers, take your dog to a boarding facility during the move.
Be careful about handling your dog when you’re moving. Dogs bones and muscles are more easily damaged than you might think. Never grab and pull a dog by the tail or a paw.
Most people transport themselves and their dogs to a new home by car. Make sure your dog is as comfortable as possible during this trip. He should have a few toys to keep him amused. And you need to schedule walking breaks, preferably at parks or rest areas. Be sure your dog is on leash at every moment you are outside.
Even if your dog is microchipped, this is a good time to get a collar-mounted GPS tracker. These devices allow you to track your animal’s location in real time by yourself. Also have an up-to-date photograph of your dog and have his medical records and proof of vaccinations in your car as you travel.
In your new home
Once you have arrived at your new home, make sure your dog is safely secured in a crate or in the fenced-in backyard while furniture is being moved into the house.
You’ll want to pay your dog some extra attention to ease the transition. It will take him a while to adjust to the new sights, smells, and sounds. Take him on extra walks around the neighborhood so he can orient himself.
Be sure to unpack a few things that smell familiar to your dog right away. The dog bed should be about the first thing to go in your new home, along with toys and something that smells strongly of you, like a coat or blanket.
Dogs are generally resilient, and beloved dogs even more so. Ninety percent of what your dog needs is you. If your dog feels just as loved in his new home as he felt in the old one, he will adjust quickly and with minimum distress.
Cindy Aldridge is a freelance writer and dog lover. She started Ourdogfriends.org as a fun side project for herself and to educate pet owners and potential pet owners about how dogs can enrich our lives. She enjoys writing about dogs and pet ownership.