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Staying Healthy

How to Celebrate Your Pet’s Birthday with Health in Mind

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For pet owners, there are few events in life as exciting as the birthday of your beloved furry companion. Since they do so much for you every day with their cuddles, games, and front door greetings, it is a nice idea to stop once per year to celebrate their birthday and thank them for all the wonderful moments.


However, some preparation and caution must be made when designing a pet’s birthday so they remain their healthy selves while also avoiding potential dangers. If you are thinking about your pet’s next celebration, heed some of these tips and tricks for an exciting and safe day for pets and owners alike.

Food Considerations

When it comes to pet birthdays, there will likely be many tasty treats, but remember that it is also about what they shouldn’t eat. For instance, it is a smart idea to avoid excessive balloons, streamers, and confetti as they can be dangerous for your pets if eaten, and your dog or cat won’t understand what they are looking at anyway. Instead, you can get dog-themed plates, cups, and dog bowls so your decorations are safe and functional at the same time.

Everyone deserves a cake on their birthday and that goes for your furry friends as well. There are many cake recipes online that are dog friendly, including a tasty carrot and carob cake and a banana and ginger cake that offers healthy fruit along with cinnamon and ginger paste. Of course, certain toxic ingredients should never be in a dog cake, including sugar and chocolate, so substitute applesauce and peanut butter to provide the same consistency.

In addition to the cake, you can also get your pooch some healthy snacks to celebrate the occasion. Try some snacks that your pet doesn’t eat regularly like salmon treats or organic pumpkin oven treats. Of course, you can never go wrong with getting them a nice big bone, which provides a good source of nutrients and minerals while also stimulating saliva to prevent the plaque that can lead to gum disease. What a thoughtful gift.

Fun and Practical Gifts

While they are nice every once in a while, buying your dog an endless amount of snacks isn’t always the best option for their health. Instead, you can buy gifts that are fun for the pet and useful for the owner. For instance, consider a colorful portable pet water bottle that you can bring with you on walks and to the park, which is convenient for the owner and thirst-quenching for the dog. There is also a smart bone toy that moves about with an owner-controlled phone app, creating a fun experience for the dog and allowing the owner to sit, relax, and enjoy the show.

A really cool gift idea for pets is a personalized item that is all their own and you can keep for years to come. Customized dog tags and bandanas are fun to wear on their special day. A personalized fleece blanket gives them something soft to lay on or under on those brisk winter nights. They even have customizable clean-up bag dispensers for your pet’s special messes.

Another great idea for pets that will keep them clean and help them relax is a trip to the doggy day spa. Many of these locations offer personal grooming sessions, bathing systems that clean and massage the dog, and blow-drying services to provide that smooth and shiny coat. Consider hiring a mobile groomer and your dog can get the same services in the comfort of their own home.

Healthy Activities

While material gifts and pampering can be nice, there is nothing more exciting for a pet than an action-packed day outside. This could include a day at the dog park as you let the pooch play to their heart’s content or a long hike up an exciting mountain path. Any activity that has your pup running and jumping all day will help them stay strong and lean, and this type of activity is also great for their mental health as it has been shown to reduce anxiety and depression.

For less traditional activities, consider a trip to the beach or set up an agility course in the yard where your pet can jump through hoops and bound around sports cones. If you are feeling really adventurous, you can pack up the car and enjoy a road trip to a new city, then take a walking tour of the area as you take in the sights.

Owners who stay active alongside their pets will also reap healthy rewards. For instance, many activities like biking and jogging are good for stamina and vein health. By jogging alongside your pet, you are burning calories while strengthening your bones and muscles. Just remember to be safe when you’re outdoors for long periods of time. Be sure to wear UV-blocking glasses or contact lenses to deter the sun’s harmful rays. If your pet is prone to burns while outside, be sure to apply sunscreen to keep them protected.

As you can see, there are many fun and healthy activities that you can do with your dog on their upcoming birthday. By utilizing these tips, you can let loose and have fun with your best furry friend.


Jori Hamilton is a writer from the pacific northwest. You can follow her on Twitter @HamiltonJori and see more of her work at writerjorihamilton.contently.com.

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