While we love our dogs and give them all of the attention, affection, and playtime that we possibly can, the reality is that we have limitations to how much we can keep them stimulated. So, it’s no wonder why so many dog owners seek out canine playmates for their beloved furry companions. Setting up a playdate for your dog means that they’ll be able to play and release energy in a way that’s instinctive to their species because, at the end of the day, we can’t play with dogs to the extent that they crave.
A playdate can be enormously rewarding for your dog, but if your canine is new to the concept, there may be a bit of a learning curve. Especially, if your dog is not used to being around other canines.
Do All Dogs Enjoy Playdates?
If your dog is used to being the only pup in the household, and generally doesn’t get a chance to interact with other dogs, then it’s understandable that you might be worried about how successful a playdate can actually be, given the fact that you have no idea how social your dog is around others. There are a lot of things that can determine how much your dog wants a canine friend. For example, the younger the dog, the more likely it is that they want another dog to play with since it’s during those early years when they need lots of opportunities to use up all of their energy. Also, some species are naturally more social than others.
Then, there are some dogs that are simply antisocial around their own species. It’s important to start socializing a dog from as early of an age as possible, because dogs, like humans, get more set in their ways as time goes on. Some dogs may actually find playdates distressing, and that’s okay. If your dog shows aggression or anxiety when it sees or interacts with other canines, maybe they don’t actually need a playmate after all.
However, the large majority of dogs do want to play with other dogs, and you’ll be doing them a favor by socializing them as soon as you can. The key is going about the process in the right way to make sure that both dogs have a completely rewarding experience.
Tips for a Successful Playdate
To make sure that your dog’s first playdate goes as smoothly as it can, follow some simple tips that will lead to success.
Tip #1: Be Selective About Your Dog’s New Friend
First off, don’t assume that your dog wants to play with any dog it comes into contact with. Like humans, dogs have different personalities, and some personalities get along with one another better than others. These are the things to consider when choosing a playmate for your pup:
Tip #2: Supervise the Whole Time
It’s very important that you supervise your dog’s playdate the entire time because when two dogs play together for the first time, you can’t be fully sure that one dog won’t become aggressive, or that the playing might just get a little too rough.
Tip #3: Find a Neutral Meeting Place
Dogs can be very territorial, which is why it’s always recommended that at least the first time, the playdate takes place in a neutral area rather than one dog’s home. Consider a dog park or a similar outdoor area, where neither dog feels as though the other is threatening their territory.
Tip #4: Positive Reinforcement Goes a Long Way
Bring treats with you, and make sure to reward the dogs for good behavior. This creates a positive association with playing, where playing with one another in a respectful way leads to getting rewarded.
Tip #5: Leave the Toys at Home
Dogs are known to be quite possessive about their toys and other belongings, and your dog seeing the other one playing with their favorite ball or stuffed animal can cause some bad blood. Besides that, dogs can fight over toys, creating a competition that can lead to aggression. So, leave the toys at home.
Tip #6: Use Some CBD
Last but not least, consider incorporating some CBD into playtime. Chill Paws CBD dog treats and CBD oils can be administered about 30 minutes prior to their playdate to help mellow their mood and minimize the risk of aggression or social anxiety. Research has shown that cannabidiol can reduce a dog’s fear response, which can lead to better and more social behavior. Our CBD products are the ultimate choice for canines, as they are formulated with clean, dog-friendly ingredients and serving sizes of cannabidiol that are appropriate for their body weight.