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Thirteen Etiquette Tips When Dining Out With Your Dog

Although dogs are not allowed inside many restaurants in Canada and the United States due to health codes, many of them do allow you to dine with your furry little friend on their outdoor patio or sidewalk seating. However, there are some very important things to remember while dining with your dog.

Etiquette tips while dining with your dog:

1. Find out the policy of the restaurant – As already stated, depending on where you live, many restaurants do allow you to bring your dog with you for outdoor seating; however, you should always call first to confirm. The last thing you want is to show up for a dinner engagement with your pooch only to find out he or she is not allowed to dine with you.

2. Socialize your dog – It’s important that your dog is socialized so that you will understand how he reacts to other people, situations, and things. If you observe your dog does not respond well in certain situations, then leave your pup home. You should also ease your dog into dining out with you. Perhaps, start out small by taking her to a restaurant during a non-peak day and time when it is less busy and make the fist visit short.

3. Exercise your dog first – Before leaving for the restaurant, exercise your four-legged friend first to burn off any excess energy. He will most likely be a much happier and calmer guest while dining out – so will your other dinner guest!

4. Bring another guest – If you can, try to bring another person to accompany you. A friend can watch your dog for you in case you need to use the restroom or leave the table.

5. Bring only one dog – Even though a restaurant may be pet friendly, don’t abuse the privilege by bringing multiple pets. It’s not a dog park so be respectful.

6. Bring a portable water bowl – Some establishments may provide special dog bowls, but don’t expect it. It’s always a good idea to bring your own portable water bowl and never allow your pup to lick or use your dinnerware.

7. Have your dog relieve himself beforehand – Make sure your dog uses the “potty” before going to the restaurant, so he does not have an “accident” on the floor of the establishment.

8. Practice good table manners – Make sure your pet is calm and not disturbing the other dinner guests. Do not allow her to sit in your lap or in another chair at the table. Your dog should be always sitting or lying down beside your chair. Keep your dog on a short leash to avoid tripping and do not allow her to wander off. You may love your furry little pal, but not everyone enjoys the company of pets.

9. Be mindful and courteous of other patrons – If you dog is becoming anxious, loud, or unruly, take him outside for a brief walk to calm him. Some people are not used to being around dogs and may be annoyed by their boisterous and noisy behavior.

10. Consider a carrier case – If you have a small dog, consider putting him in a carrier case while dining in the restaurant. Not only will this prevent her from bothering the other dinner guests, but it may also provide a more comfortable environment for your pet.

11. Bring treats for your dog – Bring treats for your dog to keep him occupied and drooling over human food.

12. Always clean up after your dog – The restaurant should not have to clean up after your pet, that’s your job. Bring handy wipes to clean up any drool, crumbs from the doggy treats, or any “accidents” so the staff will not be inconvenience.

13. Don’t sit near children – Most children find dogs irresistible and may not know how to interact with animals. Even if your pet is good with children, he may get too excited and want to play which could cause him to behave in a way he wouldn’t normally do.

Knowing proper dog etiquette while dining out will make the trip more enjoyable for you, your dog, and for the other guests.

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Author Bio

Isabella Boston

Isabella Boston is a multi-talented writer and the creator of Bella’s Attic Studio. She is well-versed in content writing, copywriting, and social media strategies with a focus on health and wellness, fashion and beauty, and natural healing as it pertains to the body, mind, and the soul. She is also a romance writer and the author of Passion of Flames.


[A] Jean, S. (2023, May 2). 9 etiquette tips for dining out with your dog. AARP. [B] Michelson Found Animals. (2023, June 21). Etiquette for dog-friendly restaurants. Michelson Found Animals. [C] Rogers, C. D. (2023, March 30). Dog-friendly restaurant etiquette: 20 rules for a well-behaved pet. Hepper.


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