Petiquette: How to Handle an Uninvited Pooch at Your Dinner Party?
It's enough to make any hostess with the mostess lose her composure. So, how do you handle this uninvited guest without offending your friend or putting a damper on your swanky soirée?
Etiquette expert Celeste Perron, the author of Playing House, a guide to cooking, cleaning and entertaining, says it's best to be polite about the situation. "Suggest to your friend that you leave the pooch in another room -- a bathroom perhaps -- while you dine, to prevent being distracted by the dog begging for food or attention, or tearing apart your furniture," Perron says.
And, says Perron, you have the right to request that the dog be a party of one in a separate part of your home. "Since you've gone to the trouble to prepare a meal, you shouldn't have to have it ruined at all by an uninvited four-legged guest," she says. "Just say something like, 'I think dinner will be more relaxing if Jake is resting in the other room. Why don't I put him in there just until the end of the meal?' " Make the pup more comfortable by giving him a bowl of water and a pillow, then set him free once you all get up from the table, she says.
Too bashful to suggest that the pooch be put away? "Then the next time you invite the person over you should say, 'Would you mind leaving Jake at home this time? I really want to focus on catching up with you,' " she says.
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