While some dogs can’t wait to make new friends, others can be overwhelmed meeting too many people at once. Here are some helpful tips on ways to manage dog and house guest interactions.
Staggering guests’ entrances so they don’t all arrive at once can be an effective way of managing interactions. If you have an overly friendly dog, you’ll want to keep them from jumping on guests and knocking them over. A formal introduction that allows your pup and people to feel safe and comfortable is the best way to go. The new guests can each greet your pup individually from the other side of a baby gate to make it less overwhelming and prevent any jumping.
Socialization can wear your dog out, even if they enjoy the company. Set aside a quiet, familiar space for them so they can take a breather. This is especially important for dogs that aren’t social butterflies. If your dog is hesitant about large groups of strangers, don’t force them to hang out. Forcing a dog to socialize more than they’re ready and willing to can lead to a stressed and fearful dog.
Once your dog is comfortable hanging around everyone, you’ll want to ensure their safety. Make sure that all human food or drink and decorations are placed out of their reach. Holidays with dogs can be fun for everyone, but you’ll want to emphasize that table scraps are unhealthy, and some foods are very dangerous for dogs.
Check In On Your Pup
Being a host can be stressful enough, but the stress it can have on your dog can make him withdraw. So, during the chaos of hosting, do not forget to give your dog some attention. Your guests will surely show him attention, but it’s you he will be seeking the most attention from. Take time throughout the party to reward him with treats, pets, and lots of love. Knowing you’re there for them will help reassure them and greatly reduce their stress.