There are many great reasons to host your own DogVacay – but having fun with your guest is defiantly one of the most appealing. A new dog in the house can really liven the place up and we encourage you to have fun with your new guest and treat them like one of the family. Sometimes feeding can be challenging, so to facilitate the task with a guest dog, we’ve compiled a list of helpful tips to get your dog to eat.
1. Train and Feed. Incorporating dog training into meal times is a great way to bond. It allows you to set the ground rules required for everyone to live together peacefully and can even be a fun new exercise. Start by reinforcing the basics such as “sit” and “stay”, to gauge your guests responsiveness and if they progress well, why not use meal times as an incentive to learn a new trick?
2. Add a special treat. Snacks and treats are also a fun way to feed your dog if they are motivated by food! Adding peanut butter, or chicken paste into their toys (such as the Kong or larger bones) is a great way to spark your guests interest for hours of good old fashioned fun! Use treats to introduce new dogs to one another when going on a DogVacay.
3. 1 on 1 attention. Home dog boarding means you have the flexibility to spend some time with you visitor one on one. Why not feed them individually and spend a little extra time petting and welcoming your dog into their new environment? Food is one of the most important assets to a dog and being a good friend who feeds them well can help strengthen your bond.
4. Take them outdoors. Offer treats outdoors for some extra exercise and fun with all the family. Dogs like being out and about. It lifts their mood automatically, it’s great exercise and gives them the opportunity so socialize. Allow children to treat the dog for good behavior and let your pooch share his treats to show how welcome he is to the family!
Additional helpful tips to remember when feeding a guest dog:
- Some dogs require being hand fed. Check with your owner if your guest has any specific eating requirements such as being hand fed. This may be especially true if your guest has medical complications.
- Some dogs may abstain from feeding. This can be common in dogs who are nervous or have anxiety. Monitor your guest for signs of lack of hunger. If they don’t feed right away, don’t worry – once they calm down, reintroduce the food and try again and if the problem persists, contact a professional for advice. Most dogs will regain their appetite after they settle down.
- Some dogs should be fed away from other dogs. This is important in dogs who are not used to eating with other animals or who are dominant or show aggressive traits. Monitor your own pets for signs of discomfort eating around your guest and always feed them in a different place if you feel there is a risk of conflict.
As always, make sure you check with the owner for any medicinal or dietary requirements and that the snacks you provide are healthy and within the daily recommendations. Dissecting any nutritional or dietary requirements with the owner will help alleviate any concerns you might have.