Brett Eldredge's Guide to Being the Ultimate Dog Dad

Photo: bretteldredge/Instagram

Father’s Day is a time to celebrate all of the dads in your life—dog dads included. And nobody’s a better pup parent than Brett Eldredge. The country singer—whose upcoming self-titled album drops in August—recently celebrated his Weizsla Edgar’s first birthday, and in the past year alone, he’s proved himself to be one of the most devoted dog dads out there. Eldredge even created an Instagram account for Edgar, which has racked up over 46,000 followers to date. The pair is constantly displaying their love for one another on social media, and it’s clear that their match was in the stars. But how did Eldredge know that Edgar was the right fur child for him? Well, it turns out that things could have gone a bit differently.

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“I was originally going to get a different pup than Edgar,” Eldredge recently told InStyle. “I drove six hours down to Alabama to get this other dog, and then I got there and saw Edgar. He had this little red, white, and blue collar on, and he ran up to me and sat on my lap. He had a personality that was kind of like my own from day one. So I switched my decision and chose this little guy.”

From then, things only got better. “We took the trip back to Nashville, and he was definitely a nervous little puppy,” said Eldredge. “He slowly started getting used to the world and opening up a bit. Then, next thing you know, he’s crazy and all over the place with me and traveling. He’s probably been to about every city in the country already. He’s the ultimate road pup and my best pal.”

Here, Eldredge shares some insight into what it takes to be a great dog dad.

1. Take him with you—everywhere.
“Edgar is a really great road dog,” said Eldredge. “There are a few of us on the bus right now, and he gets a lot of love. He’ll lie in certain spots on the bus, on the couch, and he’ll lie in your lap and he’ll sleep on the ride for a while. He sleeps pretty well once the bus is rolling on the highway. It relaxes him now because he’s so used to it. But once we get to a destination, he’s ready to burn a lot of energy.”

2. Give him the attention he craves.
“I first got Edgar when I was on tour with Keith Urban, so as a puppy, he would walk around backstage and see 100 people a day,” said Eldredge. “He was very much a personable dog and everyone loved him. Now, he’s got his own dressing room sign—Luke Bryan’s crew made it for him on the tour we’re on right now. So he gets a lot of love.”

3. Once he’s a social media star in his own right, keep his ego in check.
“It’s tough, but he’s pretty humble, ya know?” said Eldredge. “I try to not give him all the treats—even though he thinks he can get all the treats in the world. I try to work on his training every day and keep him humble so he remembers that he’s just another pup, just like the rest of us are just a bunch of people running around in this crazy world. Most of the time he knows that and is a regular old pup, but sometimes he gets a little diva-ish.”

4. Celebrate his milestones the same way you would a human child.
“I used to make fun of people so much for having birthday parties for their dog—and I still make fun of myself now that I had one,” said Eldredge. “It’s always nice to have a gathering for a cookout with your friends and family, but I was like screw it, let’s get some puppy treats and balloons and we’ll have a real, wild, first birthday party for Edgar. It’s pretty hilarious. He had no idea it was his birthday party, but we sure did and we partied for him. He’s a part of a lot of people’s lives, so everybody was there. He’s just another one of our pals.”

5. Be patient.
“When I first got him, he was a pain in the butt sometimes and I would get frustrated,” said Eldredge. “Then I learned that the more frustrated you get, the harder of a process it is. So when he’s being a little menace, I’ve learned how to handle that and get him calmed down instead of being like, ‘Quit doing that.’ I keep him in a routine a lot—get him up the same time of day and give him exercise. I’ll take him out on a run with me or go swimming. He has a lot of energy, and I’ve learned to really take him along with me on all my adventures. Since I also have a lot of energy, if I bring out all his energy with me, then we’re both more clear-minded and ready to take on the world.”

6. Share the cuteness with others.
“I love to make skits,” said Eldredge. “Edgar has built his own fan base just from being around me all the time. I never thought that I’d post videos or pictures of him, but he’s just always there with me. So, he’s got his own fan base now and I gave him his own Instagram account. Fans hold up tons of posters every night in the crowd, that say ‘Edgar’s Biggest Fan’ or ‘Edgar for President,’ which is really funny.”

7. Dress alike.
“I made a video where I’m training him to be a reindeer, and I bought gray sweatshirt for him to match me like Rocky,” said Eldredge. “I just thought it would be funny to train him like Rocky and it was pretty funny to wear the same outfit. Sometimes you can take it too far and make a dog look ridiculous when you dress them up, and you know they hate it. But as long as he’s having fun and it makes people laugh and smile, that’s all that really matters. We’re in the business of happiness, me and Edgar—that’s what we’re trying to spread to the world.”

8. Sing to him.
“I have videos up of him falling asleep on my lap as I sing, and I think he finds some sort of comfort in that,” said Eldredge. “He’ll really sit back and listen to the more chill songs, and he really chills out when it’s just me and the guitar and him. I’m practicing all the time, so sometimes he’s unamused. Other times he falls asleep. But he loves a good jam session and he loves a good nap, so I like to provide that entertainment for him.

9. Write him a song (one day).
“People have been asking me if I wrote him any songs for this album, and there’s not a specific song about Edgar,” said Eldredge. “But he definitely inspires me to be happier, and there’s nothing more calming than your pup. He chills me out when I’m stressed, and he inspires me to write better songs and make better music. He’s always there for me, so that’s the main way that he inspires every song.”

10. Keep him well-groomed.
“Edgar hates baths,” said Eldredge. “My whole family were never dog people at all, and I never got to grow up with one even though I tried to talk them into getting one. But then Edgar came along, and now my parents and my brother all love him like their grandson or brother. My mom’s like, ‘I gave him a bath today!’ We bathe him a lot because he runs around in the mud and jumps around in the dust and the dirt and everything. He’s an active dog. I clean his ears up, make him look cool and feel good. He can’t be stinky around all of his fans that he sees all the time. So he’s pretty shiny—and he’s pretty much a stud all the time.”

11. Enlist him as your wingman—and trust his opinion on a potential significant other.
“He definitely is a hit with the ladies,” said Eldredge. “I never got him for that reason like, ‘Oh man, we could go talk to this girl if we have Edgar,’ but he definitely attracts the gals. If he didn’t like one of them, it would be tough. But I’m sure he would come around. He really is a loving dog, but if someone just wasn’t into dogs or him, then it would probably be a deal-breaker. I think he would win them over. He’s pretty easy to get along with, and he’s a big part of my life.”

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