The weather is warming up and we are excited for longer days and the bright summer sun. Now is the perfect time to plan a Yappy Hour for your friends, both two-legged and four-legged.
Planning an outdoor party in the nice weather with friends is even better when you can bring your pups along too. Some bars and restaurants even host Yappy Hours at their venues, especially if they have outdoor patios.
As fun as that can be, why not plan a Yappy Hour of your very own? You can keep it intimate by just inviting your friends and their pups, or even extend the invite to the public. This is a great way to meet new people that enjoy going on adventures with their dogs.
Location, Location, Location.
The first step to planning your event is finding the perfect location. You can host a yappy hour almost anywhere. Many bars, hotels, and restaurants boast evening planning services and those that allow dogs are usually more than willing to help accommodate a dog-friendly party. If there are not any locations in your area that fit your need, there are ways to get creative. You can host a block party event, or even set one up in a local park.
It is important to have some rules in place when hosting your event. First off, check the rules of the location where you are hosting the party. Also, limit guests to two dogs each. Any more than this can be stressful. Make sure all dogs are kept on a leash and suggest that people do not bring retractable leashes. Retractable leashes can make it difficult to control dogs, and also they can get tangled with each other very easily.
Make sure there is enough shade or get a few tents for your party. Your friends and dog friends alike will enjoy some time in the shade. If the forecast looks particularly warm, you may want to buy a wading pool for the dogs to romp around it. Of course, have plenty of water bowls around so the dogs guests can stay hydrated.
Treat the Dogs.
Having a few dog-friendly yappitzers is a great way to make your party stand out. Here are a few of our favorite summertime recipes.
1. Frozen Peanut Butter-Yogurt Dog Treats: We love this recipe from blog, Brown Eyed Baker. The best part about it is how easy it is. There are only two ingredients needed!
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter
- Melted 32 oz plain yogurt
Directions: Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted peanut butter and yogurt until smooth. Using a medium cookie scoop, or 2 tablespoons, drop mounds of your batter onto the baking sheets. Place in the freezer for about 1 hour, or until completely frozen. Transfer them into a freezer-safe container or zip-lock bags to bring to your party. (You can also stores the extras in the freezer for up to 2 months!)
2. Pupsicles: This is another really fun and easy treat idea for your dogs that we found on a blog called DogBuddy.
- Small paper party cups
- Container of greek yogurt
- Chopped up fruit
- Hard dog bones (such as Milkbones)
Directions: Take small party cups and fill them with a mix of water and greek yogurt. You can also add bits of fruit in as well. Stick a dog bone in each and freeze them. Remove the cup they will look like a perfect popsicle. Place them in paper bowls and give them to each of the dogs to enjoy.
3. Paws-up for Homemade Treats: You can never go wrong with some classic recipes for dog treats that have been proven to be fan faves.
Treats for Peeps.
You can keep it simple when supplying treats for your friends. Keep in mind that food may be sitting out in the sun so it is best to bring food that will not spoil easily. Also, try to plan food that does not need to be kept particularly hot or cold to be enjoyed. These recipes for Charred and Raw Corn with Chile and Cheese and Creamy Kimchi Dip are meant for outdoor events.
A Yappy Hour wouldn’t be complete without some cocktails and mocktails! Always remember, you should never allow your dogs to consume alcohol of any kind.
1. Summer Sangria: Why not make a big batch of Summer Sangria for your friends to enjoy
- 6 cups assorted fruit (such as mango, pineapple, apricot) sliced or cut into chunks
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves (or basil)
- 1 bottle crisp white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio)
- ¼ cup thinly sliced peeled fresh ginger
- ½ cup orange liqueur such as Cointreau
- 3 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Directions: In a large bowl or pitcher, combine fruit, ginger, basil or mint, and orange liqueur. Mash gently with the back of a wooden spoon until basil is bruised and fruit releases juices. Add wine and lemon juice and stir to combine. Refrigerate 1 hour (or up to 1 day). To serve, fill eight glasses with ice and top with sangria.
2. Pink Lemonade Spritz Non-Alcoholic Mocktail: For your friends that do not drink alcohol or for minors at your party, here is fun summer punch recipe.
- 1 can frozen pink lemonade concentrate
- 1 pt. Ripe strawberries
- 6 ¼ cold water
- 1 qt. Ginger ale
- Whole strawberries
Directions: Process lemonade concentrate, mulled strawberries and 1 cup of the water in blender or food processor until berries are liquified. Pour lemonade mixture into punch bowl. Stir in remaining 5 1/4 cups cold water. Gradually stir in ginger ale. Serve over ice. Garnish with berries.
While your actual event is sure to be a blast, half the fun is in the planning. We would love to hear about everything that you did to plan your yappy hour. Any cool recipes that we should add to our list? Any neat decorations your used or activities that took place? We can’t wait to hear all about it!