5 Basic Rules for Pet Etiquette

This is a piece I wrote for the Santana Row blog but it’s good to remember good pet etiquette whenever you’re out with your pet!  Click here to check it out on their website too!

Most pets always want to be with you and whenever possible, it can be great fun to bring your pet along, especially when it comes to shopping, outdoor dining, sitting at a cafe and walking around a park.  This is also good for dogs especially as it helps socialize us to different environements, smells, people and pets.  However, there are general rules of etiquette everyone should try to follow to ensure a safe and happy time to be had by all!

1) Be aware of where your pet is and what they are doing. Especially when shopping or pet friendly shopping areas or walking by outdoor restaurants, you don’t want your dog urinating on someone’s leg or merchandise!  Also keep in mind, not everyone likes animals and some are afraid.

2) Keep your pet leashed or contained. In areas where there is a lot of foot traffic, use a non-retractable leash for better control and safety, cats also often like being in strollers for safety reasons.

3) Clean up after your pet. No one wants to step in dog poop or see it on the street.  Help keep places clean and ensure they stay dog-friendly, pick up after your dog.  Respect the hard work of gardeners and try to keep your pets out of planters and flower beds.  Try to “empty”out your pet before heading into shopping or dining areas.

4) Ask before the Sniff! You never know how animals or people will react to each other, be polite and respectful.  Just as people should ask before petting a strange dog or cat, one should ask if it’s okay to let dogs greet each other.

5) Know when it’s best to leave your pet at home. Some situations might be more stressful for your pet or they may not be ready for a loud and noisy area.  Instead of being stressed with your pet, leave him or her at home, go have a good time and come back to a happy and rested pet.

Following these simple rules can help ensure that everyone, including you and your pet having an enjoyable outing!