- Holidays and Celebrations
Host a Fun Dog Party!
Whether it's a pet party or human party, adding animals makes it fun
Throw a wild party by adding your friends’ pets to your guest list. Be sure to keep it fun and safe for every creature, large and small.
Animal lovers don’t like to leave their best furry and feathered friends at home when heading out to an event. Open up your home and these pals make natural conversation starters.
Invite pets that are socialized and friendly with all other types of animal guests. Just one aggressive, out-of-control or frightened pet can upset the tone of the event for all the rest even after he leaves. Exotic pets might add interest but no one will be happy if the Benson’s snake snacks on the Chapman’s parrot. Sue’s cat may be “really sweet” but it might go psycho-kitty around Chad’s bull dog, no matter how docile the pooch is.
And invite human guests selectively, too. Skip those who are allergic or who dislike animals. They can come to another event.
Clearly State Precautions on Invitations
Make every guest aware of safety precautions to keep all the animals-and humans-safe from each other. .
Ask guests to provide safety harnesses, leashes, portable cages and other restraining devices, in case of an emergency.
Let guests know what other animals are invited so they can decide if the event will be safe for their pet or if they might be allergic to a particular type.
Tell guests that they are on the honor system to bring their pets only if they are healthy and up-to-date on vaccinations.
What to Provide at the Party
Animals can be unpredictable in new situations. Normally sedate dogs, for example, can become anxious and excitable around too many new smells, sounds and activities.
Provide plenty of space for everyone to socialize. Cramped quarters are uncomfortable for humans but especially for unacquainted pets.
Designate a nice, quiet space to where guests and their pets can retreat to settle down. A side yard or separate room will suffice. An upset pet might appreciate solitude while his human enjoys the party, if needed.
Let guests know where you want animal toileting to take place.
Provide poo bags and a disposal can far away from the festivities.
Keep plenty of clean water dishes in several places.
Keep human food out of the pets’ reach.
Always ask the human before you feed his pet. You don’t want to sicken an animal and pets have their own dietary requirements and food allergies.
Provide food for each type of pet. Keep amounts small to avoid illness. Unfamiliar foods in a new environment filled with strange animals can cause vomiting.
What to Avoid at the Party
No loud music. Animals can be distracted and disturbed into uncharacteristically dangerous behavior by loud music. The less noise the better.
No decorations within pets’ reach. Some are toxic. Others may entangle the pets.
No animal shows or games. Unless everyone is up for it, don’t put pets or humans on the spot by asking them to perform as entertainment. Having all eyes on them may make animals skittish. They still harbor innate predator-prey instincts. Plus, animals are not gracious losers when there is an edible prize at stake.
No strict schedules or programs. Keep the atmosphere relaxed. Trying to keep animals on schedule will be stressful. Just being able to accompany their humans to a new place is plenty of fun activity for the animals.
No drama when pets engage in aggressive behavior. It only adds tension that heightens sensitive pets’ anxieties. Just remove one or both animals to separate rooms until they calm down and can rejoin the group.
One Way to Host
Spot the good and bad of this party
This dog party was held inside and one of the larger "guests" frightened the birthday pup.
The point of a pet-friendly event is to allow guests to socialize together while introducing their pets. Animals are great ice-breakers for more reticent guests. Create a safe, spacious and relaxed environment and everyone is sure to enjoy a pleasant time.