How to Prepare Your Dog for Holiday Guests

It’s that busy time of year when we’re preparing our homes for incoming guests and relatives. We know you’ve got a million things going through your mind right now but take a moment and consider the fact that your dog likely has no idea what is about to come his way. If you’re wondering how to prepare your dog, luckily we’ve got some great tips for you.

Teach Your Dog Some Standard Commands

Before you introduce your dog to strangers or guests, he should know a few basic commands: Sit, Stay, and Leave it. The ‘sit’ and ‘stay’ commands are so versatile and useful to you and your relationship with your dog due to the fact that they can be applied to so many situations. Is your dog about to jump on a guest? Sit! Perhaps he’s inching closer and closer to the dinner table? Stay! Know how and when to use these commands ensures a well-behaved animal throughout your guests’ stay.

The ‘leave it’ command is important due to the fact that many of our common Holiday foods can actually be dangerous to our animals. Chocolate, onions, ham, and dairy products can cause serious illnesses in our dogs. So if any of these foods happen to fall on the floor, make sure your dog knows to ‘leave it’ alone.

Is Your Dog Comfortable with Petting?

Not all dogs like to be petted. Before your guests arrive, make sure your dog is okay with being petting by on all body parts. Know the signs that your dog is uncomfortable. If your dog backs away, sinks to the floor, or tucks his tail, these are nonverbal cues that he does not like being petted.

You know your dog best, and sometimes your furry friend just has a disposition that does not mesh well with large groups of people. If your dog is jumpy, untrained, shy, aggressive, or hates loud noises, he should simply be kept away from guests at all times.


Keep your furry best friend’s feelings in mind when preparing for the holidays, and you both are sure to happy a fantastic Holiday Season.