How to throw your pet a birthday party
As pets become an increasingly central figure in the family unit, we’ve seen a significant growth in trends such as celebrating your pet’s birthday as the years have gone on. Whether you buy your pet a present or throw them their own birthday party, the recent Petplan Pet Census found that as many as 43% of those surveyed always buy their pets birthday and Christmas presents. If you’re one these owners, or if you’d like to give it a try for yourself this year, Petplan takes a look at how to throw your pet a birthday party.
If you decide to throw your pet a birthday party, don’t forget that even though it can be easy to think of your pet as just another member of the family, they still have very different needs to yours and this should be at the forefront of your planning.
What party is complete without a good spread of delicious party food? Though again, bear in mind that this is a party for your pets and while it’s okay to spoil them a little on special occasions, they have very different dietary needs to humans. Avoid chicken legs and chocolate, and aim to include specifically designed cat, rabbit, or dog treats, though go easy on the quantity to avoid damaging their health.
Of course, a cake is an absolute must. No birthday is complete with a birthday cake! While your pet won’t be able to chomp down on a Victoria sponge the way we can, there are plenty of special pet birthday cake recipes online if you’re looking to add a personal touch to the festivities. Alternatively, there are also plenty of special bakeries/pet shops who’d be able to whip up a cake for you, one that your pet is guaranteed to love. Here are a few recipes and ready made cakes to get you started.
Pup Cake Recipes
Ready Made Cakes
Remember to be careful with candles, as some pets don’t understand fire, and if your pet has shown an aversion to fire in the past then it’s probably best to avoid this part of the tradition.
Now that you have your pup-cake, it’s time to think about what sort of party activities you’ll need. Naturally, you’ll need plenty of toys, this is a celebration for the animals after all, so make sure that they have plenty of fun. A mix of familiar feeling toys, along with some new ones, should give your pet enough choice so that they can really get the most out of their special day.
Additionally, we would also recommend some mental stimulation games to ensure that their brains are getting a work out just like their bodies. Puzzle toys are great for this kind of thing, one great example is a treat ball. This is a ball with a treat inside which your pet will have to work at to get out, this kind of mental stimulation is great for your bet and rewards them for using their brains.
If it’s summer and your pet is a fan of water you could provide a small pool to play in, or if they’re not comfortable around water, simply replace it with balls. A ball pool gives pets something to experience that is probably pretty uncommon for them.
Alternatively, you could even create an obstacle course for your pets to complete, not only will this give them the opportunity to experience a new environment and get some exercise, but it will also be fun for you to watch. Just make sure to keep it simple and don’t involve anything that might give your pet any significant trouble.
You’re going to want to document the special day with a load of cute pictures for Instagram, therefore going all out with party decorations is key. Choosing a theme will not only look great for your pictures but help create an unforgettable day for your guests, yourself and the birthday boy/girl. Some cool theme ideas include:
- Paw Party for cats and dogs
- Give a dog a bone for dogs
- Puppy/Kitty Pamper Party for cats and dogs
- Yarn Party for cats
When it comes to selecting a venue to place all your new pet decorations there are a few things you need to keep in mind. While many pets enjoy exploring new areas and discovering new smells and tastes, many feel more comfortable in familiar surroundings, somewhere they can ground themselves if things get a little bit too hectic. For this reason, it might be best to hold the party in your own home.
If you do elect to hire a more professional venue, first off, we would suggest that you only do this for dogs as cats won’t respond the same way. Secondly, make sure that it’s pet-friendly, you don’t want to go to all this trouble only to find out that your pets aren’t allowed in!
It’s important to ensure that there’s plenty of space to run around, especially if you’re throwing a party for a dog. One idea might be to host the party in a local park, somewhere that your pet is familiar enough with but still affords them plenty of opportunities for playing and exploring.
Once all the fun and games are complete, and your pet has had a truly fantastic birthday party, make sure you give them time to calm down and relax. Birthday parties can be incredibly stimulating for some animals so it’s important to help them cool off afterwards.
Some pets may just want to sleep it off and find a nice comfy spot to unwind, others might need some attention from you and to be reassured that everything is okay. In either case, it’s important to respect your pet’s wishes and help them come down gradually from their wave of excitement.
Following these steps, you should be able to give your pet a super birthday, where they can safely celebrate turning another year older.
Do you have any tips for throwing a birthday party for your pet? Let us know in the comments below.