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How To Throw A GREAT Dog Party

If you're planning a dog party there are loads of quick and easy ways to make it a howling success.

Throwing a party for your pooch is a lot like throwing one for your child.... noise, excitement, party games, food, cake, the occasional squabble or temper tantrum and, of course, a pile of gifts!

To help you make sure your pup's big day is a big success, I've put together a whole host of ideas, tips, recipes, games and more to get the party started.

Just scroll down to find all the tips, advice and help you need - all in one place, the fun starts here!

Four Yorkshire Terriers wearing party hats

Where's The Dog Party?

Where you decide to hold your dog's party depends on several different things including:

  • Time of year
  • How many guests there will be
  • Size of your home
  • Whether you have a safely fenced yard
  • Your budget

If you're inviting every fur-friend little Fido has ever met and your apartment is only big enough for the two of you it's a good idea to consider an outdoor party or one held in a public place such as a park or doggie daycare facility.

Pup wearing bandanna at the park

Other possibilities are dog-friendly beaches, dog-only parks and obedience/training schools.

If you choose an outdoor venue make sure there's plenty of shade and water available. If you're going to be indoors check that there's easy access to an outdoor space for the inevitable 'potty trips'.

What Are You Celebrating?

There are lots of reasons for throwing a dog party. Pick one of these or make up your own!

  • A Birthday Party
  • A Costume/Theme Party
  • A Halloween Party
  • A Christmas or New Year Party
  • A St. Patrick's Day bash
  • A Valentine's Day Party
  • A Puppy Class/Obedience School Graduation celebration
French Bulldog wearing pink party hat

If you're thinking of a costume or theme party be creative - there's an ever growing range of dog birthday party supplies these days!

A Hawaiian theme allows lots of scope for costumes and decorations, or be up-to-the-minute and hold a Pirates-of-the-Caribbean party.

It's easy to find tons of decorations and ideas for that right now.

Or how about a surf party if you're going to the beach? The ideas are endless, see what you can come up with!

Who's Invited To Your Dog's Party?

Although it may be tempting to invite every 4-legged friend little Fido has, take a minute to think about your guest list before you mail those cute invitations.

It's best to invite dogs and puppies that Fido knows and likes - you don't want the dog party atmosphere ruined by two quarreling canines.

Try to get a fairly even balance of male to female pups as dogs of opposite sexes tend to get along better. Although if they're young puppies this isn't generally too much of an issue.

Remember that Fido's doggie pals come with human puppy-parents so take that into consideration. It helps if the 2-legged party-goers get along with other too!

If you need help thinking of guests, how about -

  • Pups that live in your neighborhood and rub noses with Fido on his daily walks
  • Dogs that you meet and greet regularly at the park
  • Pups that attend Puppy Class/Obedience School/Agility class with Fido
  • The furbabies belonging to family members or close friends
  • Fido's litter mates or mom and dad (if you've kept in touch)

You can make your own dog party invitations quickly and easily at home - and it's fun too. Or just buy some ready-made invites and customize them to suit.

In addition to all the usual info. on the invitation, make sure you make a note of any special requirements you may have.

For example, a B.Y.O.B. stipulation (no...not beer, it's Bring Your Own Ball!) or a request for all puppy parents to bring their pup's leash should be clearly indicated.

Dog Party Food & Games

No party is complete without lots of yummy food, and fun games will keep your pup and his friends happy and out of mischief.

Make sure that all the food is safe for dogs to eat (see this page for info. on every day foodstuffs and household products that are poisonous to dogs), and choose a dog-appropriate birthday cake or recipe.

Dog eating birthday cupcake and wearing party hat

There are tons of fun games your dog and his friends can play, and they're fun for the human party-goers as well.

If you want to add some extra flair and make your dog party that little bit different why not consider inviting a 'dog professional' to come along and give a demonstration of some sort.

Here's a few ideas to get you thinking

  • Professional Photos
    You could have a photographer come and take portrait or candid shots of the party host and guests (the furry ones that is!). Guests could choose from the proofs at a later date.

  • Dog Training
    Invite a dog trainer to give a short lesson in basic obedience or manners

  • Grooming Demo
    Ask a professional dog groomer to give a demonstration and perhaps one of the guests could volunteer to be groomed

Keeping Your Party Animals Safe!

Whenever you've got a bunch of puppies or dogs together, in an excited atmosphere there's the potential for trouble.

You're going to want to make sure you puppy proof your home or yard and do your best to eliminate any possible hazards or reasons for conflict, well ahead of time.

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