How to Have a Successful Play Date
Keep an eye on the pets. If you're a pet owner and want to have a play date at your home, it's probably best to contain your pets away from the children, especially the first few visits. Not everyone likes animals, and even the gentlest pet can cause minor injuries like unintentional scratches that some parents will take pretty seriously. If your friend and their kids know and love your pet, it's okay to let the animal be in the room, but lay down ground rules and keep an eye on the proceedings. Make sure kids know not to tease or play rough with a pet.
If You're a Guest For a Play Date
If your child is new to play dates or is going to a friend's house for the first time, you should go over the rules for being a guest in someone's home. Go over the basics about being gentle with other children's toys, staying out of closed-off rooms and being polite to the hosts. If there are any other rules specific to the host family, go over those as well.
Help with clean up. Your child contributed to the mess, so it's only right to help the host mom make a dent in the mountain of toys scattered across the living room.
Don't bring a ton of toys. Your child can play with the host child's toys. Bringing a backpack full of toys can lead to arguments among the other children and will clutter the host's home.