Summer officially began on June 21st, and it’s time to make the most of it. After months of enduring snow and rain (or just the sadness of shortened days) it often seems like summer can’t come soon enough.
While the colder months do bring us the joys of snuggling closer with our dogs, it’s undeniable that summer brings us a renewed energy. Here are 8 outdoor summer activities for you and your dog to enjoy.
Use up some of that energy and have fun in the process! Join our Facebook community to keep the conversation going and share your favorite dog-centric summer activity.
1. Go for a hike
Hiking can be a vigorous activity for you and your pup, but you can take it easy if needed. Even taking a stroll down a new street in your neighborhood can be a great way to explore. If you want to try out a water-pack or other harness for a longer hike, getting your dog used to new gear on a short walk is a good idea.
2. Try camping
Summer is a great time to try out a new campsite. Depending on where you live, be sure to book in advance to ensure your spot. In addition to the necessities for your dog, like food and water, pack a longer leash, tether, and stake to keep your dog secure while you’re at the campsite. Bring plenty of poop bags as well, and (like everything you bring camping with you) be sure to properly dispose of it.
3. Find a place for a swim
You can often gauge how much a dog likes the water off of how they handle bath time, but even the most reluctant bathers could surprise you! Taking your dog for a swim could be on the small scale - just get a kiddie pool, fill it up, and toss some toys in - or on the big scale - find a dog-friendly beach near you and make a splash. If you do opt for going big, pack towels and extra water for rinsing. Something to cover your car seats is always a good idea too. Either way there will probably be a mess, but that’s half the fun, right?
4. Sign up for a new training class
Many communities and pet-focused stores offer more training classes in the summer months. Especially for a newly adopted dog, training classes are a great way for pet parents to bond with their new family. If you’re feeling confident in your dog’s abilities, find some new tricks to teach them, or go for a bigger challenge by creating (or going to) a dog agility course. Finding new ways to mentally and physically test your dog’s abilities fights boredom and builds intellect and strength.
5. Dine at a dog-friendly cafe
Pet-friendly restaurants are rising in popularity as more people embrace dogs as part of the family, and important patrons. You can check review sites like Yelp or BringFido to find the highest-rated dog-friendly restaurants in your neighborhood, or wherever you’re traveling.
6. Host a summer barbecue
Longer nights means more time for parties, so bring all the dogs (and their humans) to your yard for some summer fun! It’s a great time to try out a new vegan barbecue recipe and share some healthy food with your dog. Keep bowls of water around for thirsty pups and if you want to take it the extra mile, make some homemade treats for take-home party favors.
7. Drive-in movie
Looking for a more low-key summer outing? Taking your dog to a drive-in movie is a great option if they like riding in cars, or might have more limited mobility. You can check out some new scenery on the way, and catch the latest flick or a retro film.
8. New toys for summer
Okay, so a new toy itself isn’t an activity, but take one with you on your next outing! Maybe your dog has a favorite toy that just needs replacing, or you’ve been eyeing something special to splurge on. Get a new ball or frisbee and take it on your next hike, camping trip, swim, and more with your pup this summer.