August 26th is National Dog Day, a holiday established by animal welfare advocate Colleen Paige. This special day is dedicated to raising awareness about the many dogs that are waiting to be adopted, as well as celebrating all the ways that dogs enrich our lives.
Keep reading to discover 10 fun ways to show your appreciation for your pup and celebrate your love of dogs on National Dog Day.
1. Go on a New Adventure with Your Dog
What better way to show your furry friend extra care and attention than by going on a new adventure? Depending on your dog, this may be a new hiking trail for them to explore, a new dog park you’ve never visited, or just a car ride to a new pet store.
This is a great way to explore new places in your neighborhood and give your dog new sights and smells to experience. They’ll also enjoy the extra one-on-one time with you!
2. Sign Up for a Dog Training Class
If you have a high-energy dog that loves learning or having a job to do, a new training class can be the perfect way to celebrate them. There are so many great classes and dog sports to try out, and the best class will depend on your pup’s personality.
Here are a few fun training classes to consider:
- Barn hunt
- Dock jumping
- Competitive obedience
3. Have a Puppy Playdate
A puppy playdate is a great way to celebrate not just your dog, but all of the dogs in your life. Get together with friends in your backyard or at a dog park to give your pups space to run and play.
You can even turn the playdate into a bigger celebration with food, dog treats, and pre-planned activities for the dogs to enjoy.
4. Make Sure Your Dog’s Microchip is Up to Date
One of the best ways to show your appreciation for your dog is to make sure they stay safe and secure at home. Take this day to double-check your dog’s microchip and make sure the information is up to date in the event that they ever get lost.
Dogs with a microchip are 2.4 times more likely to be returned to their owners, and the chance for cats is 21.4 times higher. You should also check your dog’s ID tags to make sure they’re current and still readable.
5. Make Your Dog’s Favorite Treats
There’s a good chance that food is your dog’s love language, and making delicious homemade treats is the perfect way to celebrate them. Make your pup’s favorite treats or try out a new healthy dog treat recipe for your four-legged friend to enjoy.
If baking isn’t your strong suit, you could visit a local pet store or dog bakery to pick up a fun new treat.
6. Book a Pet Photoshoot
A professional photoshoot is a great way to not only celebrate your dog on National Dog Day but to capture memories you can cherish every other day as well.
A professional pet photographer will know how to make your dog’s personality shine, as well as capture them in motion. While you may take many photos of your dog on your phone, professional photos will show them in a whole new light.
7. Give Your Dog Extra Attention
At its core, National Dog Day is about celebrating your dog and the impact they have on your life. While it’s fun to take your dog to new places or try new activities to celebrate, sometimes the best way to show your appreciation is with extra love and attention.
Take some extra time today to pet your dog, play their favorite game, or spend a little longer cuddling with your pup on the couch.
8. Let Your Dog Pick Out a New Toy
If your dog loves their toys, National Dog Day is the perfect excuse to get them a new one. So, why not take them to their favorite local pet store and give them the opportunity to pick out their own toy?
This also doubles as a great enrichment activity, introducing them to new sounds and smells. Plus, it’s an excellent training opportunity to practice some of their obedience skills. Once they’ve picked out their toy, dedicate time later in the day to play with your pup and take the new toy for a spin.
9. Donate to Your Local Shelter or Rescue Organization
National Dog Day is about celebrating all dogs, and there are many pups waiting in local animal shelters and rescue organizations to find their own loving families.
These organizations rely on donations to fund their operations and provide proper care to dogs and other animals in need. Shelter pets need to be spayed and neutered, up to date on their shots, and many may require even more extensive medical procedures.
Making a donation to one of these great organizations helps provide even more dogs with supplies, medical care, and the opportunity to become someone’s new best friend.
10. Adopt or Foster a Dog
Opening up your home to a new dog may be the best way to celebrate National Dog Day. Adopting a dog is a big step, but it’s also very rewarding, and can make a huge difference in a rescue dog’s life. With approximately 3.1 million dogs waiting to be adopted, there are so many wonderful pups to choose from.
If you’re not able to adopt a dog at the moment, fostering is also a great option. Many rescue organizations rely on their foster network to give animals a stable environment until they can be adopted. Fosters help these organizations reach even more dogs and provide them with the care they need.
How Will You Celebrate National Dog Day?
Dogs do so much for us, and National Dog Day is the perfect opportunity to celebrate our favorite pups and show them how much we love them.
Whether you bring a new dog into your home or take your current buddy on a new adventure, there are lots of ways to show your appreciation for dogs on this special day. So, why not try out some of these ideas and make the most of National Dog Day?
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