Happy birthday to all shelter pets during DOGust

Posted by Dr. Kim Smyth on Jul 28 2011

August 1st is cause for great celebration, as it is the universal birthday of all shelter and rescue pets with unknown birthdays! When animals enter a shelter or rescue organization, most of the time their actual birthday is unknown. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t deserve a party! August 1st (also known as DOGust 1st) was designated by the North Shore Animal League America as the day to recognize our four legged friend’s birthday.

When humans have birthdays, we know how to celebrate. But how do we celebrate our pets’ birthdays when they don’t even know what a birthday is? I just try to focus on making it the very best day of the year for them.

Here’s a couple of ideas to make your rescued pets DOGust birthday great:

  • Obviously, new toys are in order. Pets can’t unwrap presents, but consider a gift bag. It seems to raise the excitement level in my house if my dog gets to peek into a bag to try to remove her new toy. Of course, the cats would like their gifts delivered on a silver platter.

  • Take your dog for an extra walk. It doesn’t seem like much, but most dogs LIVE for walks!

  • Host a DOGust birthday party. Invite your dog’s closest doggy friends over, and let them have a great time just playing with each other. For an added bonus, fill a kiddie pool with water and watch the fun begin!

  • Find out if there’s a specialty store that sells dog and cat birthday cakes or other baked goods. Each year, my dog gets a cupcake especially for dogs, and she loves it!
  • Consider a new leash or collar. Over time, these items can get grungy. Make sure your pet looks her best on her birthday!
  • If your pet doesn’t have a microchip, consider this the BEST birthday gift you will ever give. Microchips make happy reunions so much easier should your pet become lost.
  • Make a donation to your local shelter in honor of your pet’s birthday. Think about how much joy your shelter pet has brought to your life. Your donation could allow someone else’s life to be touched in the same way.

Happy DOGust 1st, and happy birthday to all of the rescued pets out there!

Photo: Shelter dogs photographed by Amanda Jones at North Shore Animal League America.