These days, more and more coffee shops are allowing people to let their dogs join their owners and people love to take advantage of this opportunity. However, it is important to follow some simple etiquette guidelines to ensure that things go smoothly. Coffee shops provide great outlets for neighborhoods and communities to come together and adding canines to the mix can be a win-win for everybody. What are some of the key points to consider before taking Fido along to the coffee shop?

Proper socialization is critical for ensuring dogs are confident and happy

Before taking your dog to the neighborhood coffee shop, it is wise to ensure that the dog is socialized well. As Paw Rescue details, dogs that have been well socialized will typically be friendlier and able to more easily adapt to different settings than those canines who don’t get proper socialization experiences early on. Ideally, dogs are exposed to different types of environments, animals, and people in their early months, allowing them to feel comfortable in a variety of situations.

However, dog owners need to be aware of how changes can affect dogs and their socialization, and even older canines need their owners to consciously provide socialization activities. For those dogs who are comfortable being in new situations and around new people, visiting the neighborhood coffee shop might be a fun outing.

Set the stage for success by being prepared

Pet Safe suggests that dog owners do some preparation before taking their pet on these kinds of excursions. For example, it is wise to ensure that your dog will reliably follow commands, even if there are numerous distractions around. In addition, feeding and exercising your canine before heading to the coffee shop can set the stage for success as the pup will be more likely to settle in and enjoy the outing.

Owners may want to be prepared with a portable water bowl for their dog to use at the coffee shop if needed and bring a treat or chew toy that will help to keep them occupied. If taking your dog to the coffee shop is new for both of you, start out by going during less busy times and aim for a spot to sit that is out of the way, in a corner if possible.

Plan to tie your dog’s leash to your chair and keep an eye on the pup to ensure he’s not wandering or disrupting other customers. The Pet Friendly Travel Blog notes that owners should be prepared to leave if the dog is having a hard time settling down and be sure to clean up any mess as before heading out. Be alert and aware of what your dog is doing and what he needs so that everybody involved has a positive experience.

Remember to be flexible and patient as your dog learns the ropes

Coffee shops can be full of distractions, so it can be helpful to work up to these kinds of outings with your pup. Start at dog parks to work on social skills and training and prepare for your first excursion or two to your community coffee spot to perhaps be relatively short so your dog can get used to the process without the expectations being too high.

It can be a lot of fun to take your dog to the neighborhood coffee shop, and pups certainly have a way of connecting people and helping to develop a sense of community. Be sure to set your canine up for success by following some simple etiquette guidelines and making an effort to ensure that he’s properly socialized before venturing out to this kind of setting. By being prepared with the necessary tools to keep your dog content, you’ll set the stage for a fun time for all involved.