Grassroots taprooms and breweries are popping up on almost every street corner, offering amazing brews and signature sips. With your friends at your side and a drink in your hand, what more could you need? Well…your dog, for starters. There are many dog-friendly businesses, so you could bring your pup to a friendly pool game or trivia night. A great idea — until he yanks the leash out of your hand, knocks over a tray, and trips the server carrying precious pints to parched patrons. The shatter of a once full beer glass is the saddest sound in the English language.  To keep this disaster from becoming a reality, make sure your pup is appropriately socialized and trained for this kind of outing. If your dog isn’t a puppy any more, you can still teach an old dog new tricks. It all comes down to what they’re used to.

Start At Home

If your dog doesn’t obey you at home, they’re certainly not going to listen to you when they’re surrounded by exciting sounds and smells. Work on simple obedience at home before expecting obedience from them when you’re out and about. Be consistent in praise and discipline, and your dog will learn to trust you more and more.

Regular Exposure

The best way to get your dog used to being in public is to expose them to strange people and places on a regular basis. Make a point to regularly bring your good boy or girl to parks, pet supply stores, and anywhere else they can meet new people. This will also give you an idea of where they are in their training and socialization. When your pup is used to new situations, your time at the taproom together may be nearly at hand.

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Do Your Research

Before showing up at the patio or taproom with your dog, make sure the establishment is indeed pet-friendly and whether it’s BYOWB (Bring Your Own Water Bowl). Sidewalkdog.com is a great resource for finding which businesses allow dogs, what is available for dogs there, and reviews of how amiable the staff are toward their four-legged visitors.

Remove Temptations

If your dog eats before going out they will be less likely to drool over each new smell that wafts by. Also, go for a walk or play fetch before arriving. Exercise beforehand will mitigate their energy level and help keep them calm. But do keep them on a leash at all times! No matter how perfect your pup may be, no one is above an occasional excited outburst.

Know When to Opt Out

No one knows your dog better than you. If you know your dog isn’t going to fit in where you’re going, then it’s better for them to stay home and safe no matter how they look at you with their big brown eyes. But don’t lose hope — with enough time, consistency, and exposure, your pup will soon be ready to join the team for your next trivia night!

By Whitney Grindberg