It’s no secret that we love animals here at Peaceful Bend. We have two dogs and two cats of our own that we treasure. Not only are we glad that our customers enjoy our own “pups”, but we are always happy to welcome furry visitors to Peaceful Bend. (In fact, we have a whole weekend planned on April 19 & 20, 2014 dedicated to Pooches! Find out more information about that event by clicking here.) So today I wanted to post up a few tips for bringing your dog to a winery.
Tip #1 – Research
Be sure to call or email the winery you want to visit before heading out so that you know for sure whether pets are welcome. Some wineries do not allow pets due to health codes, allergies, existing animals, or other reasons. You can also find out if there are any rules or limitations for bringing a dog with you (i.e. – leashes required, size limits, etc.). Sometimes the winery website will state up front whether dogs are welcome on premise, but I notice most do not have that information readily available.
If you are planning an extended stay near a winery, you can find pet-friendly listings on travel sites like GoPetFriendly.com, or BringFido.com. These sites are great for lodging and other amenities that you and your dog will enjoy. It may also be worth your time to check out where the nearest vet to your hotel/amenity is located – just in case!
Tip #2 – Train For Travel
Has your dog been in the car before? Have you taken him or her out around other people already? Loading your pooch in for a long car ride and bringing them around a lot of unknown people may overwhelm and scare your dog. Be sure to take small trips in your car with your dog so that they are prepared for traveling for an extended period of time. Also, go to a nearby park where there are other people and animals so that your dog can get used to being in new situations and know what your expectations are when you visit new places.
I have a related and sad story featuring our black lab, Pepe. Up to about 8 months old, he had never been on a leash. The first time I needed to take him to the vet, I loaded him in the car and we headed up to the clinic where I borrowed a leash. BIG mistake! When I put that leash on him and tried to get him to go where I wanted, he bucked and jumped around wildly. He was so scared to be in a totally new environment AND not be able to get away. The poor guy even hit his head against the corner of the vet’s building trying to get free. Fortunately, he figured the rules of the leash out pretty quickly, but I felt like the biggest jerk. I so wished I had spent a day or two with him at home where at least he would have felt safe in his surroundings to get used to a leash.
Don’t be like me….give your dog a short break-in trip or two. It will be good training for your dog and make your trip much easier!
Tip #3 – Pack For Your Pooch
Be sure to bring a water bowl, food (or a few treats), a leash, and a toy with you. Also, bring any supplies you need to clean up after your doggie. Some wineries may have supplies on hand, but it’s good to be prepared.
Tip #4 – Feeding Schedule
If your pooch is prone to car sickness you might want to have them travel on an empty stomach. Once you are settled in at a winery, you can feed them and give them time to digest properly before you head home again. Just be sure they have plenty of water available to your pet while you travel.
Tip #5 – Keep An Eye On Your Pooch
Just like children, dogs need attention, especially when you are in a new space. Help introduce them to new friends at the winery, be sure to keep them on a leash, and give them plenty of love & play time so they are less likely to act out during your visit. Bringing out a favorite toy will often help keep your dog content while you enjoy your winery day together.
I hope these tips helped you get ready to bring your furry best friend on out to Peaceful Bend. If you have any tips for traveling with a dog, let us know in the comments. Cheers!