If you want to do something memorable and fun on a date, or with someone special in your life, but don’t want to leave your pooch at home, bring him or her with! Taking your dog with you on a date with someone new, or with someone you’re in a long-term relationship with, can be a very fun and rewarding experience for both you, and your pet.


A major advantage to bringing your dog with you on a date is that a pet can make a really great ice breaker by taking the focus off of being on a date, and focusing on the silly things your dog does. Bringing your pet also gives you plenty of conversation starters, and many stories to share.


Pet-friendly businesses are becoming more popular than ever, so your options for fun are endless. Some ideas include: dog friendly beaches, indoor and outdoor cafes, and yes, even some bars and nightclubs have set aside “yappy hour” for people to mingle with their dogs.


Finding a place to bring your date and your pooch, which can create a combination of both fun and romance can be found in many outdoor places, and even a few indoor places including: walking through a nature preserve or the woods, going to a local dog park, or visiting a pet friendly restaurant. All of these places can be great ways to bring some adventure and play into your time together, especially if you both have a dog to bring with on the date.


Not only does bringing your dog with you on a date create instant fun and adventure, but it can also create a romantic backdrop when you spend time in a natural outdoor setting. I found this to be true first hand when I started dating Christian, and we both brought our German Shorthaired Pointers on an afternoon excursion at Lake Andrea in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. When we walked on the beach and wooded areas with our dogs, it gave me an instant feeling of romance, and closeness with him. We ended up holding hands, and playing with each other just like we were little kids again. The dogs were running and playing in the water, so they inspired us to let loose and have fun too.


Some of my most memorable dates or time spent with someone special have been when we’ve taken our dogs with us for the day, or even on a vacation, which offered pet-friendly accommodations.


Another interesting advantage to bringing your pooch with on a dateis it gives you an opportunity to see how well your date has bonded with his or her pet, and how he parents, so to speak. I saw firsthand how much time my boyfriend had spent with his dog by the way she listened and responded so well to his commands. He walked his dog through the wooded area of Lake Andrea without a leash, and needless to say, I was very impressed by how well she stayed close by him. I could tell very quickly that he shared a special and close bond with his pooch, and the fact that he shared this special bond with her really impressed me.


There is also an advantage for your dog in all of this too! Exposing your dog to other dogs and humans as often as possible teaches them valuable socialization skills. Just like people, dogs need to learn to communicate through experiences. Dogs rely on body language cues from other dogs and humans to communicate, so they can learn how to respond appropriately in many situations.


Bringing your dog out on a date means you should act responsibly by making sure your dog has had at least basic obedience training prior to bringing him or her with on a date, or to any public place allowing dogs to accompany you. That way, you will have some control over your pet’s actions, so you are not caught in an embarrassing situation by their behavior on a date.


Another point to cover is to ensure that your dog is current on all vaccinations and state license requirements, especially if your date plans include going to a Dog Park, pet-friendly restaurant, or public place allowing dogs. This also will show your date that you are a responsible dog owner. I personally, find it to be an attractive feature in a potential partner who I may end up sharing my life with, as well as my dog’s life too.