summer pet activities

The winter was long (as usual), but spring has finally arrived! If you’re excited about the warmer weather, you can bet your pet feels the same way. Finding creative pet-friendly activities isn’t always easy, which is why Arlington Animal Hospital has put together some fun ideas to get you and your furry companion out of the house this summer.

Into the Woods

Pets love camping, so why not plan your yearly trip into the woods with your four-legged family member in mind? Campgrounds like Cherry Hill Park and Greenbelt Campground welcome pets and their owners. If camping isn’t your thing, there are endless opportunities to get out and explore the Appalachian Trail or one of the thousands of miles of hiking trails in our state (most allow leashed dogs).

Hit the Park

Bring the whole family and enjoy a few hours at one of the many local dog parks in Arlington. GlenCarlyn Park boasts nature trails, two playgrounds, and the Long Branch Nature Center. Bring a picnic and make a day of it!

Water Fun

Swimming and relaxing near the water is essential to summer fun, and water-loving pets couldn’t agree more. Instead of leaving Fido at home, seek out dog-friendly beaches, such as Lake Accotink Park.

Outdoor Dining

Al fresco dining is one of the best parts of summer and an activity your dog can easily enjoy. Arlington has a variety of dog-friendly patios where you and your well-behaved pet can soak up the sun, including Rhodeside Grill, Carlyle Grand Cafe, and Ireland’s Four Courts.

Safe and Sound Pet-Friendly Activities

When it comes to participating in pet-friendly activities, keep the following safety tips in mind:  

  • Always supervise your pet anytime you’re in public, including at a dog park.
  • Keep your pet leashed at all times while in public or on a trail.
  • Prevent dehydration by always carrying plenty of cool, fresh water and a bowl. Don’t allow your pet to drink from puddles, lakes, or pools.
  • Heatstroke is a serious issue for pets in the summertime. Keep your pet safe by making sure they always have access to shade and water. Take frequent breaks from activities throughout the day.
  • Never leave your pet unattended in a parked vehicle, even if the vehicle is in the shade and the windows are cracked. Being left in a parked car is the number one cause of heat-related deaths among pets.
  • Bring fresh water to rinse your pet after swimming, and dry them thoroughly with a clean towel. Always supervise pets when playing in the water.
  • Last but not least, don’t start your summer fun without making sure your pet’s vaccinations are up-to-date! Additionally, all pets should be on year-round flea, tick, and heartworm preventive medications to protect them from dangerous vector-borne illnesses.

What are your favorite pet-friendly activities in the Arlington area? We’d love to hear from you! Post to our social media or let us know the next time you’re in for a visit.