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From the Community Press

Spring Fun: with your furry friend

Do you enjoy day outings? Or road trips to fun destinations? Many adult communities are pet friendly. Seniors often share their home with a beloved dog. And of course, it’s their best friend. Do you ever wish you could take your pet with you? It may be easier than it seems. Your dog likely provides you with comfort and companionship in these retirement years. It’s hard to leave them behind! Enjoy your pet every single day with these tips this spring and summer!

Dog Parks. A great way to stay active! Many retirement or 55 plus communities offer a dog park amenity, or are in close proximity of one. Taking your little friend out for a walk to the dog park can bring you both some joy. You get to enjoy the sunshine together as well as meet other pet parents! Socializing with others can mean making friends. And you’ll probably see your new friends quite frequently if you make the dog park a daily or weekly outing. Plus you and your dog will get a little exercise in. Some dog parks have benches so you can relax while your dog plays. Make sure to bring some water along!

Go on a trip

Whether you want to plan a day outing or a longer trip to a different city or state, just doing a little planning can ensure taking your little friend with you will be easy and enjoyable. As the weather warms up, you won’t want to be leaving your pet inside a hot car and many hotels do not allow pets to be left unattended. If you have a smartphone or iPad, you can download some apps to help you navigate. For example, BringFido is a simple app you can use on the go. Type in the city you are visiting and you’ll get recommendations for hotels, restaurants, parks and activities that are pet friendly. You can even book a hotel using the app. If you are planning on going to a park or beach, the app will let you know the rules for bringing a dog. Some restaurants offer outdoor seating which makes a nice option to enjoy the outdoors with your dog while sipping coffee or eating dinner. And believe it or not, some restaurants even offer a full menu for you dog! Read reviews from others and write one of your own. You can also type in your own city to find opportunities for you and your dog. For example, type in “Albuquerque, New Mexico” and start exploring!

Visit a restaurant. With so many outdoor seating options available, take advantage of the warm weather and sit outside with your dog. Find your senior menu and ask if there is one for the dog! Many restaurants offer at least water for your furry friend. As you make friends with other pet parents, you may want to invite them to join you! Don’t forget the sunscreen and perhaps a cushion to sit on if the outdoor furniture is a little hard. If you aren’t sure if a restaurant is dog friendly, just give them a call ahead of time and make sure there is available seating.

Vacation. Senior living comes with the benefit of having the time to do the things you always wanted to. Is traveling your passion? Whether you are off to visit family or a beachside resort, it might be possible to take your pet with you. Many airlines offer the opportunity to take your dog along with you inside the cabin, provided your dog fits in a crate under a seat. If you have a service dog, you’ll be able to take a larger dog inside the cabin with you. Go to your airline website and find their pet policy, or give them a call to find out how your pet might best be accommodated. Inside airports, you’ll find pet servicing stations where your dog can relieve itself. Make sure they have frequent access to water and you should be set! If you are traveling by train, your options may be more limited unless you have a service dog. Access your BringFido app to find resorts and hotels that are pet friendly.

Visiting friends. If you have a friend who requires assisted living services or lives in a nursing home, you and your dog could plan a visit to help brighten up their day. Find out how to best accommodate your pet, and make sure your senior friend would enjoy seeing both of you. It may be best to visit outside on a patio, or take a little walk outside together. You and your furry friend can bring a lot of happiness to everyone around you!

2 responses to “Spring Fun: with your furry friend

  1. I love that most independent living communities are pet friendly now! Pets bring such great comfort to their owners and can really enhance a senior’s life. Not to mention the lives of their family and friends that live around them. Awesome tips!

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