In this guide, we’ve lined up some of our best tips to keep your dog calm during parties and holiday gatherings. Whether you’ve got a more reserved pup who’s not too keen on meeting so many new strangers at once, or simply are worried how your pup will handle the hustle and bustle of a loud party, here we’ve got solutions for every Dood. 

Table of Contents

Tips To Keep Your Dog Calm During Parties: Introduction

Who doesn’t love a good party with their loved ones?! Whether you’re hosting Christmas, Thanksgiving, a Super Bowl party, or have people coming over for some other kind of celebration, we’ve also got our furry best friends to think about. 

Although it might be a joyous occasion for us, it might not be the same for our canine (and feline) pals. Some dogs are totally fine meeting new people and being in the center of attention, regardless if there’s just one guest or 10 coming over. And then there are some dogs that get a bit anxious and stressed when meeting new people or when hearing loud noises. 

Not to mention, there are all sorts of temptations for your dog that they otherwise might not have access to. You can probably imagine how your dog will start salivating as soon as they smell those yummy foods, leading them to beg for table scraps, perhaps even steal them. 

Indeed, there are many different variables to consider when hosting a party in a household where one or more of the family members has four paws. To make these social gatherings go by smoothly for all parties involved, we’ve listed here for you our best tips to keep your dog calm during parties and gatherings. 

Are Parties Stressful For Dogs?

For some dogs, parties can be very stressful. Especially if you’ve got a more shy or timid dog. But even if you’ve got the sassiest, most outgoing, and courageous pup, they may feel stressed out when there are big parties and loud gatherings happening in their home. People can get loud and rowdy, there’s so much going on, someone’s always moving around – all of this can cause stress and anxiety for your pooch. 

Another major source of stress for dogs during parties and gatherings is that it often messes up their daily routine. We always recommend new dog owners to set a schedule for their pups that they follow day in and day out. This is a great way to make a new dog feel safe and secure in their new home environment, and build confidence, too. But if you’re running around, trying to get everything ready on time for when the guests arrive, it can be a huge stressor for your dog. 

Additionally, some breeds are more prone to stress and anxiety, which means that you’ve got to be extra careful when hosting parties at your home. If having the party elsewhere or having a close friend pet-sit your dog isn’t an option, then there are ways you can make your get-togethers still fun for yourself and your guests, and as stress-free as possible for your pooch. 

By the way, if you enjoy our content in video format, then be sure to check out the conversation we had with two experienced Australian Labradoodle breeders, Anita and Susan. With more than three decades of breeding and raising dogs under their belt, they have so many helpful tips to keep your dog calm during parties and holiday gatherings. 

8 Tips To Keep Your Dog Calm And Safe During Parties And Gatherings

Train Your Dog To Be Comfortable With Party Sounds And People

One of the best tips to keep your dog calm during parties is to slowly and gradually help them get used to groups of people and any sounds they might hear during a party. For example, you can start hosting smaller dinners or hangouts with friends and family members for your dog to understand that sometimes strangers do come over. And, that there might be more than two of them. 

It’s also best to desensitize your pet from a young age, as this helps them get adjusted to a variety of sounds they might hear at one point or another. For instance, reputable breeders’ household desensitization techniques include playing the TV and radio, letting their puppies stay near the dishwasher or other appliances, playing the sounds of fireworks, or even parties. 

We recommend you start socializing your new puppy from the moment you bring them home. Let them safely socialize with people of all ages, other dogs, puppies, and why not other pets and animals. This will help them build their confidence and prevent fear, anxiety, and stress later in life. 

Stick To The Same Schedule

What often stresses our four-legged best friends out before and during parties at home is that they’re not going through the day with their usual routine. A simple solution to prevent that stress and anxiety is to stick to the very same schedule you usually do. So, you’ll want to wake up your pup at the same time as usual, feed them at the same times, make sure their walkies and potty breaks happen at the same time, and also don’t forget that much-needed playtime and cuddle time. 

Actively Supervise

Needless to say, an important tip to keep your dog calm during parties is to actively supervise them. When hosting parties and gatherings, you’re likely going to be busy with entertaining everyone, setting the table, cooking, and so forth. It’s only natural if you can’t always keep a close eye on your pooch. That’s simply not possible! 

In those moments, either have your pet away from any potentially hazardous items in your home by securing them into another room, their crate, or setting up pet gates. You could also have your pet tethered to you with a leash while you’re not able to actively supervise them. 

Create A ‘Do Not Disturb’ Room For Your Dog

If you’ve got a more anxious dog that might get a bit overwhelmed around large groups of people, you might be better off creating a do not disturb room for your dog to relax in during the party. If taking that route, don’t forget to go check in on your pooch from time to time so that they won’t get too lonely. They’ll surely love your kisses and cuddles every time you come checking on them! 

Moreover, make sure that the room isn’t messy and your pup won’t have access to any potentially dangerous items, such as socks and dirty underwear, TV remotes, small choking hazards, cleaning supplies, medications, sharp items, and other similar items. Basically everything that dogs might try to get their paws on! 

To keep your pup safe in their separate room, be sure to puppy-proof their room before sending them there for the duration of the party.

But it’s also just as important to provide your dog plenty of fun toys to play with, regardless if they’re in their separate room or get to hang out in the areas where the party is happening. Chew toys and snuggle toys are going to help soothe your pup and prevent that anxiety that they might experience during the party. 

Use Toddler-Proof Decorations

Speaking of puppy-proofing, even adult dogs can get into trouble whenever they encounter something interesting, such as Christmas decorations, presents and party favors, or even your guests’ shoes and handbags. Not only might your pup want to destroy them with their avid chewing, they may get seriously ill from ingesting food and non-food items they shouldn’t. 

Regardless if you’re hosting a Christmas party or are simply celebrating it at home with your household, we recommend you minimize any risks by using only toddler-proof decorations around the house. Dogs can easily get access to low-hanging tree ornaments that can be extremely dangerous for them. In severe cases, ingesting them can have fatal consequences. 

Create A ‘No Human Food’ Rule

One of the most important tips to keep your dog calm during parties is to never, ever feed them table scraps or other human foods. It can be tempting for your guests to give in to your dog’s endless begging and whining. However, you should inform your guests about the house rules beforehand. Of course, certain human foods like frozen green beans and carrots are perfectly fine, as long as they’re unseasoned. But in all honesty, people usually like to feed their table scraps, which can contain harmful ingredients for your pet

Speaking of house rules, we recommend you discuss any topics about socializing with your pet with your guests beforehand. Whether you’d like to set rules for meet and greets, children’s time with your pet, or even the fact that your guests should always keep the doors and windows open. It’s best if all of this is covered before everyone starts enjoying the party. 

Exercise Before The Party

An excellent tip to keep your dog calm during parties is to exercise them before the party. Essentially, you want to tire out your pooch so that they don’t have all that excess energy that could translate into destructive behaviors, stress, or anxiety. If your dog is tired, it’s guaranteed that they’ll behave better and won’t get overly excited when the guests start to arrive. 

If you usually go for two walks, one in the morning and the other in the evening, you can make those walks a little bit longer. You can also spend a bit more time playing with your pup so that they get to run around more and release all that pent up energy. This is especially helpful for dogs that are more active and energetic by nature.  

Utilize Calming Treats And Supplements

For more anxious pups, we recommend calming treats that help soothe them during the party. Dog-safe CBD treats and oils are also excellent for dogs that are just more hyper by nature. Even if you try to wear them out before the party, they may still get way too excited around a bunch of people. 

Some pups prefer CBD treats whereas others are totally fine consuming a dosage of CBD oil from a syringe. You can experiment with both options. But we cannot stress enough that you should pay very close attention to the dosage according to the instructions on the packaging and your dog’s weight. 

Tips To Keep Your Dog Calm During Parties: FAQs

How Do I Get My Dog To Calm Down Around Guests?

We recommend that all your guests understand that they should also be calm when meeting your dog. The more excited they get, the more excited your pup will get as well. Another excellent hack is to exercise your pup before the party starts. This will help prevent that insanely hyperactive behavior and your dog will likely be much more well-behaved around your guests. Of course, be sure to give your pup plenty of chew toys to play with so that they’re entertained at all times. 

How Do I Stop My Dog From Reacting To Visitors?

Again, to teach your dog to not react to visitors, you’ve got to stay cool, calm, and collected. Tell your guests to ignore the dog so that they won’t reward barking or jumping in any way. It’s also essential to train your pup from a young age how to appropriately react when there are people coming over. For example, you could teach your pup to go to their crate whenever the doorbell rings or when someone’s knocking at the door. Don’t forget to reward your pup with plenty of praise and tasty treats for behaving well. 

Tips To Keep Your Dog Calm During Parties: Conclusion

So, there you have it! Our best tips to keep your dog calm during parties and holiday gatherings. Although it might seem like a daunting experience at first, there are a few simple ways you can host the parties at home with minimal stress. At the end of the day, if you’re a pet parent, it’s your responsibility to take into account their needs as well as your own. But if you’re taking the right measures, then you can host parties at home with your pooch with total peace of mind! 

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