How to Host a Dog Birthday Party

by Amanda Flores

Hosting a birthday party for your dog can be lots of fun. Here, we’ve rounded up everything you need to think of before the big day.

Celebrating your beloved pup on their birthday by going all out is a wonderful experience for everyone. That’s why dog birthday parties are becoming more and more popular—and we’re all for it. 

That special day can be on their actual birthday if you know when it is, or if you don’t—as is the case with many rescue pups—you can celebrate Dogust! What’s Dogust you ask? It’s what many dog parents call August since it’s National Dog Month, and August 1st has been designated the universal birthday for shelter dogs. It’s a great way to honor pups we’ve adopted or rescued—or who, let’s face it, rescued us. 

Rescue dog with dog Dad

Rescue pup Luna with her dog dad, Ian, on her 3rd birthday

Hosting a birthday party for your dog can be lots of fun, and can be as grand or as simple as you want. Here, we’ve rounded up everything you need to think of before the big day.

Dog Party Supply Must-Haves

From decorations to wipes, you’ll want to have everything on hand to make the day go as smoothly as possible. That way, on the day of the party you’ll be free to enjoy the celebration!

First, the fun stuff. Bring on the festivities by making your pup and their friends look party-ready. Some things you may want to pick up for make yourself are:

- A birthday crown or hat for your pup

- Birthday bandanas

- Party hats for guests with an elastic or tie string

- Dog goody bags for all the good boys and girls

And arm yourself with everything you’ll need to keep everyone happy, safe, and tidy. Your fellow dog parents will thank you.

- Healthy treats

- Cleaning supplies, because dogs

- Doggy first aid kit

Belle on her first birthday

Fun Activities and Games to Do at Your Dog’s Birthday Party

Dogs are a lot like children. They’re pretty good at playing and entertaining themselves, but it doesn’t hurt to have some activities planned. Remember to consider the sizes and ages of the dogs attending the party when thinking of the day’s events. 

Birthday parade: Take your pups on a walk around the neighborhood (or even just your backyard!) for the most adorable pawrade ever.

Photo Booth: Set up an area where parents can snap photos of their dogs—and don’t forget to create a hashtag so you can follow along. 

Toy Bin: Pick out some new ones or just bring used options, as they’ll be new to your doggie guests.

Backyard Agility Course: This is especially great for the younger dogs who need an outlet for all that energy.

Water activities: Dog pools or sprinklers are great hot weather activities for your party pups.

Donation corner: Collect gently used toys or dog supplies from guests in lieu of gifts to donate to your local shelter.

And remember. You can always keep it simple. “We took Cora on a walk to the dog park and then had dog friendly peanut butter and jelly ice cream treats,” says Shannon Gilhooly, mom to black lab and birthday girl Cora.