Hosting a party just for your dog or cat can be fun if you plan ahead. Here are our tips to make your pet-friendly party a success.Manvi Drona-Hidalgo, Mochatini
Like any party, the right venue is essential for event success. Depending on the climate zone, outdoor venues such as dog parks, backyards and rooftop terraces are ideal. In colder areas, indoor venues like basements or rooms without carpeting can be easily adapted for pet-friendly gatherings.
As most pet-parents would know, it is preferable to not invite cats to a doggy party or dogs to a kitty party. Plan to only invite one or the other.
A dog party is not the ideal time to bring a new dog into the social mix, and it's definitely not a good place for an aggressive dog or any dog you're unsure about.
Like people, dogs love to be treated to homemade goodies. But dogs can't eat many ingredients that people enjoy, like cheese, chocolate, onion, macadamia nuts, walnuts, raisins, grapes or artificial flavorings. Generally, use good-quality ingredients and avoid excessive amounts of sugar and salt. As you would with human parties, ask pet-parents well in advance of any special dietary requirements or allergies.
There are so many gourmet options available at most pet stores, but why not mix it up by making some of your own? Not only are homemade treats fresher, healthier options, they also allow to limit qty of sugar and salt intake. Here are some recipes to try:
-Dog-Friendly Strawberry Shortcakes
-Dog Biscuits With Cream Cheese Frosting
-Peanut Butter Biscuits With Carob Frosting
-More Homemade Pet Foods
Have plenty of fresh cool water available in several bowls around the space.
Clear away any breakable or fragile items from the space. When decorating for a dog-focused event, opt for shatterproof materials and simple ornaments.
For a simple centerpiece, plant a rosemary "tree" in a steel bucket and add pebbles to keep it secure in the center of the table. Place non-edible decorations well above the reach of your tallest guests.
Don’t forget to include activities to keep pets busy during the party. Pick up a few rope toys for a quality game of tug of war. Have several balls available so there are at least one ball per guest and play free-for-all fetch. Hide treats around the space and declare the dog who finds most the winner.
No party is complete without party favors! Purchase or create doggy bags for your guests to take home a share of custom treats. These black-and-white-striped bags were made using wrapping paper and double-sided tape. A strip of craft paper brushed with gold glitter lets you personalize each bag.
Don't forget wearable favors, too, like clip-on bow-ties or personalized collars.