Dogs are like children, they enjoy being social and having their own play dates. However, before you head out the door you should do your research the day or days before your dog play date.
First and foremost, check the weather! Get to know the place/setting you are heading to; if there are any hazards, like a busy street nearby, toxins (plants/flowers to dogs), hazards (construction nearby), etc.
Another factor to consider is if your dog or the dog you are meeting can be leash free, or if you need to find a fenced-in area for play time. Once you know this, take into account how well both dogs play with other dogs of all sizes, know both of their limits, pack your bags and enjoy our list of doggie playdate ideas:
- Walk in the Park- Simply take your furry friend to a park and meet up with another friend. Dogs and owners can both get the benefit of exercising together. Or, if you have senior dogs who may not walk as far, just meet up with a friend and sit in the park and “dog/people watch”. This helps get the dogs accustom to other sounds, smells and strangers walking by.
- Supervised Play Group- This is beneficial as dogs can be off leash, yet you’re close enough should anything happen. Many doggy daycares offer this type of setting to help in socializing your pup! A supervised play session can help you determine what is appropriate play behavior, how to interact with other dogs and their owners, as well as to practice your recall.
- Meet-Up Groups- Meetup.com is a great resource to use to find well-established canine play groups in your community. You can select by breed, size, canine activity (like agility), dog related social issues, animal rights, etc. You can also look for groups geared toward the pet owner’s interests like if they are single, wine lover, enjoy hiking and more. For first time dog owners this is a great way to learn about your breeds disposition and characteristics.
- Canine Internet Matchmaking Sites- YES! Believe it or not…There are dating sites for the dogs! Matchpuppy.com, Doggiesmatch.com, ThePlaydateApp.com are social networks that help pet owners match dogs of like age, size and energy level! Similar to human dating websites these sites have the pet’s photos and profiles to help the owners find the bestmatch for friendship and playtime!
ABOUT THE BLOGGER
Danielle Salice is a pet lover, and Boxer dog aficionado— she has owned three boxers during her adult life (CarlySue, AbbySue and Capone). She also has a penchant for German Shepherds, which was her family’s breed of choice growing up. Danielle is active in the animal welfare industry and currently volunteers at Last Chance at Life, All Breed Rescue and Adoptions. Danielle became a PetFirst Pet Insurance policyholder in 2009 and has been a pet insurance advocate ever since.