Not everyone loves pets. There, we said it. If you’re a pet owner, you may be surprised to find out that some people are uncomfortable around animals. Furthermore, many people have pet allergies that seriously affect their well-being. So, what’s a responsible pet owner to do when guests come around? If you plan to have company but are a parent to an excitable dog, here are some measures you can take to make sure everyone feels comfortable and has a good time.
Exercise that baby
Some dogs are blessed—maybe that’s the right word—with a tremendous amount of energy. Certain breeds require a lot more exercise than others, so regardless of whether your dog is from a shelter or a breeder, you may have a sizable tornado on your hands. If your dog fits this description, exercise him before company comes over. A good dog is a tired dog!
A walk or jog can do wonders. Playing a game of fetch at the local dog park or an open expanse of land where your dog can really reach their top speed is another great way for them to release pent-up energy. Owners often forget that dogs need regular mental workouts, too. While walking your dog, add in commands for “sit,” “heel” or “down” at intervals. You can even do a quick training session at home before your guests come so that your dog feels secure and less anxious when your company arrives.
Train that furry jumping bean
If your dog jumps on visitors it’s not cool. Work to rectify this immediately. Until then, use a management technique like crating your dog, confining them to a room or restraining them on a leash when guests visit. These control techniques make visitors feel safe upon entering your home until your dog learns better behavior.
Teach your dog that guests are fun
If your dog leans more toward the anxious side of things when company comes around, take measures to ensure he feels safe and has positive interactions with company. One great way to start is by giving your guest a handful of treats. This can be good motivation for your pet to sit and stay. Food rewards also help soothe animals’ nerves. Come to think of it, this method works well for people, too!
When dog = achoo!
Guests who are allergic to fur dander will appreciate you’re preparing in advance for their visit. Bathe your pet with mild, pet-safe shampoo to reduce the dander. Next, move on to cleaning your home. Vacuum pet hair, making sure to get into those little, often-unnoticed crevices. If you have the time and money, spring for a carpet shampooing and greatly reduce the allergens that accumulate over time. If you plan on having guests with allergies over often, establish a pet-free zone in your home.
Pets are a great addition to many families, but that doesn’t mean everyone wants to be in close contact with them. For visitors who fear dogs or are allergic to cats, it can be a truly stressful situation. Help your guests relax by making sure your pet is ready to greet visitors in a way that makes everyone comfortable.