Americans observe National Pet Month in May. It’s a wonderful time and a great excuse to celebrate and enjoy making fun memories with your pets. With an estimated 70% of American families living with pets¹, you’re sure to find many ways to enjoy this month with your own families and other pet owners.
History of National Pet Month
The first National Pet Month was organized in 2006. It was a campaign spearheaded by the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters¹ (NAPPS). The initial purpose of observing National Pet Month was to recognize the bond between humans and animals and promote responsible pet ownership.
Over the years, National Pet Month celebrations have evolved and grown in diverse ways. Many pet product companies will partake in festivities with product promotions. You can also find local businesses offering discounts or holding charity events, such as fundraisers and adoption drives.
How To Celebrate National Pet Month
There’s something for everyone during National Pet Month, and there isn’t just one way to celebrate or observe this month. Here are some ways you can participate in National Pet Month.
Attend Educational Workshops
National Pet Month kicks off its celebration with National Pet Week, which takes place in the first full week of May. Many animal health experts and advocates promote and observe National Pet Week by offering educational classes and workshops that help pet owners learn more about pet care and how to be responsible owners.
If you’re interested in educational workshops, you can always ask your veterinarian for any information or check the American Veterinary Medical Association’s (AVMA) website¹ for events.
Participate in Charity Events
Many non-profits and animal advocacy groups will host charity events during National Pet Month. Examples of events are food drives, fundraisers, and adoption events. You can check with your local animal shelter to see if any events are being hosted near you.
If you don’t see any events taking place, you can always host your own pet supply drive. Many animal rescues and shelters will receive unopened pet food, blankets, collars, leads, and new toys. You can always check beforehand to see what supplies are in high demand.
Plan a Party
If you have friends with pets, you can always host a pet party. Just make sure that all the pets get along so that no one gets stuck in an unsafe situation.
Some things you can do at a pet party are set up a kiddie pool or make treats with your friends. Another fun activity is to create matching bandanas for pets and their owners. All you need are some plain bandanas and fabric markers or fabric paint.
You can also set up a photo station with props. It can be a challenge to take photos with a pet, but you can end up with some pretty funny and endearing results.
Plan a Playdate with Your Pet
Reserve a day that’s dedicated to your pet. Fill it with activities that your pet enjoys, such as hiking or swimming. Even napping together can be a nice, shared activity.
If you have a small pet that lives in an enclosure, you can add new decorations or hiding spaces to its home or feed it some of its favorite snacks and treats.
Make a Homemade Snack
A significant part of National Pet Month is promoting responsible pet ownership. One way that you can promote this is by making a homemade snack. Making your pet’s snack from scratch gives you more control in selecting nutritious and healthy ingredients. It’s also a great way to educate yourself on the nutritional benefits of new foods.
In alliance with responsible ownership, we don’t recommend creating a full meal from scratch. We want to make sure that pets get the daily nutrition that they need, which means sticking with their usual pet food. However, a small, nutritious snack is something that pets can safely enjoy.
Have a Spa Day
If you really want to pamper your cat or dog, book an appointment for them at a pet spa. Pet spas are rising in popularity, so there’s a chance that there’s one near you. Pet spas have different treatment packages that your pet is sure to enjoy, and they’ll appreciate a moment of relaxation and getting the attention and admiration they deserve.
There are many benefits to living with a pet¹, and National Pet Month is a great way to show your pets your appreciation. It’s also a great excuse to have a lot of fun with your pets. There are so many ways to celebrate this month, so let your creativity take the lead and make lasting memories for you and your pet.
Featured Image Credit: atyana Vyc, Shutterstock