Summertime and the living is easy... or it should be, anyway. When the sun turns up the heat, finding things to do that are fun and safe is sometimes a challenge. Here are 12 activities we recommend that will make this the best summer ever for you and your fur buddy.
- Go take a hike! Seriously. Take your dog with you and hike shady trails. Finding places that are dog-friendly to hike is no problem since the world is at our fingertips online. But to make things even easier, here are some awesome National Parks that allow dogs on the hiking trails. Check out the websites for particulars about hours, rules, and restrictions.
Yosemite National Park
Grand Canyon National Park
Mammoth Cave National Park
Great Sand Dunes National Park
Petrified Forest National Park
North Cascades National Park
Shenandoah National Park
- Camp out in the wilds. Take Fido on your annual camping retreat or just overnight. Dogs love it when we enter their world, and camping with your pup is sheer heaven to him. Here are the simple rules:
Never leave him alone. Your fur buddy should not be left behind when you leave camp, even for a short while. Keep Fido on his leash in camp. Most parks and camping areas have a six-foot rule, which means the leash can't be any longer than that.
Pack it out. Human waste and dog waste alike should be removed in plastic bags.
Snuggle down together. Most places require your dog to be with you in your tent or your car when sleeping.
Provisions for your pet. You can let your dog carry his own backpack, but be sure you pack it with a bowl, water, and kibble for him to eat.
- Backyard BBQ and splash party. A fenced yard allows you to barbecue your dinner outside in the cooling evening, and your pup will have fun splashing in his doggy-pool or trying to catch the sprinklers while it's still hot, too.
- Make frozen treats together! Even the kids can get in on this one, and believe it or not, our list of frozen treats are kid-friendly, too.
- Shoot your dog. Okay, we mean with a camera, of course! Here are some helpful tips to get those Instagram-worthy photos of life with Fido. The number one tip from professional photographers is "take lots of photos." Turn off the flash. Get down on his level, and get playful.
- Water sports. Taking your dog to the beach or a lake can be the most fun you'll have all summer. Three things to remember: Give him water to drink. Lots of it. Give him someplace to get out of the sun (an umbrella, a tree). His feet get hot, too. Let him rest on a towel where his feet can cool off when he's not splashing in the water.
- Teach that old dog a new trick. In just minutes a day, you can teach a new trick to Fido. Keep the sessions short and stop before he's bored.
- Have a picnic. Many parks have facilities for picnics. If allowed, your pup will enjoy spending time with his two favorite things: you and food.
- Tour area dog parks. Look for parks with shade and grass to play in.
- Check out Starbucks secret menu and treat him to a Puppuccino
- Join PupScouts and find friends and activities to earn badges together. Scouting was never this fun!
- Take him out to the ballgame! Here are some dog sports that use balls. Flyball, catch ball, diving for balls, and of course, chasing one as many times as you throw it (but play in the early morning or late evening so he doesn't get overheated).