A dog out for a run in the woodsThe moment when summer gives way to fall is a special on, especially for those with highly tuned senses and an ability to acutely enjoy life’s simple pleasures. We’re talking about your pet, of course! That crisp autumn air carries various intriguing scents and regardless of your pet’s mastery of seasonal changes, he or she likely knows something fun – and possibly delicious – is on the horizon.

With so many choices for fall fun in our area, it can be a challenge to know which ones your pet will truly revel in. We’ve narrowed down the list to a few of the best pet activities to enjoy together this fall that are sure to set the tone for the following years.

Get Out There!

It’s no secret that our winter weather can be blisteringly cold. So, before the mercury dips below freezing (and stays there for what feels like forever), gear up and venture into the great outdoors.

Want to stay close to home? Prepare for a visit to the Elmhurst Dog Park for non-stop socialization under the falling leaves. Or, if your pet’s adventurous spirit cannot be contained by a fence, take him or her hiking in a more rugged environment, such as:

Even in fall, parasites can be a problem. Make sure your pet is current on all flea, tick, and heartworm medication. Bring lots of fresh water, waterproof gear, and a pet first-aid kit along just in case. Also, check the security of your pet’s collar, tags, and leash before setting off together for a memorable hike. In addition, it is important to remain vigilant in protecting your pet from influenza and canine colds. Be aware of coughing dogs and make sure to bring in your pet if any signs of a cold/flu should appear.

Beach It Up

While it’s true that hitting the surf and sand is more of a summer activity, your pet can still enjoy the Montrose Harbor Dog Beach as one of the best fall pet activities. It’s a wonderful opportunity to let your pup run free on the beach, but be aware that he or she must be leashed going to and from the parking area. Before heading out, brush up on your dog’s beach safety.

Going Downtown

The Windy City has so much to offer our four-legged friends, and the the fall is the perfect time to enjoy myriad pet activities downtown. We suggest checking out any of the city’s delightful Farmer’s Markets, and depending on which ‘hood you’re in, there’s probably any number of dog-friendly areas to choose from. Be warned that an annual permit may be required.

Don’t forget to book your Sea Dog Cruise along Chicago’s waterfront. Dogs cruise for free with your paid ticket!

Other Fall Pet Activities

Have you ever let a fall go by without taking advantage of pick-your-own apples or pumpkins? One of the best pet activities is to share this wonderful opportunity to enjoy the scenery at Local Farms, and pick out some yummy produce together. Keep in mind the Elmhurst Farmer’s Market remains an excellent source of fall veggies – many of which can be shared with your pet!

Your list of fall pet activities wouldn’t be complete without a reminder to exercise your pet everyday, even if he or she is an inside-only companion. Then, snuggle up under a flannel blanket and watch football together!

The Pet Experts at Elmhurst Animal Care Center wish you and your pet a happy fall!