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Having a pet is one of the most memorable parts of being a child. If you had a dog or cat when you were small, you probably know this all too well. Days of running a field, being followed on your walk to school and returning home to see a familiar friend on the front porch awaiting your safe return. Remembering your fond memories can put child/pet camaraderie in perspective. We all know that having a pet sticks with us forever. But it can also be the door opener to memories that you too will make with your kids. So today we are going to talk about fun, imaginative ways to have fun with your pet. But most important of all, your kids!
Dress Up Day
It does not have to be Halloween for your family to enjoy a little whimsical dress uptime. Dig into the closet for do it yourself costumes for the whole bunch. A scarf can quickly become the headdress of a genie. A makeup bag can turn your husband into a clown or turn your daughter into a truncated version of dad with a few stubble marks of eyeliner. But the most fun part of this activity is creating the costume for your pet as a family. Make sure to take pictures so you can remember how silly you all looked!
Pet Appreciation Day
As if you needed an excuse to celebrate your favorite furry friend?
Decorate the room with bone-shaped cut-outs, paw prints, and pups. Party City carries a line of decorations and supplies that features adorable dogs in party hats. Of course, if you have a cat, you can theme it to match your fancy feline instead!
Have the kids draw pictures or make crafts as gifts. Bake bone-shaped cookies for the kids and get bone-shaped Milk Bones at the market for your pet. Decorate a cake in paw prints that are easy to create using coloring gel icing with simple circles. Buy a gift from each child at the Dollar Tree. It won’t set you back, but a few bucks and the kids will feel like they’ve done something super special.
Add some fun tunes to set the mood like Elvis’ “Hound Dog” and “Who Let the Dogs Out?” Don’t forget the goodie bags for the kids!
Invite the “pup-arzzi” to your next gathering for a Hollywood party that’s gone to the hounds! Invite friends and their pets or get to know the locals by inviting neighbors with pets or other families from the dog park. Roll out the red carpet with simple, inexpensive fabric from the craft store. Supply the party-goers with disposable cameras and take lots of pictures! Create a fun prop box filled with sunglasses, hats, boas and anything else that pets (or people!) might look silly in.
Finish the party with paw prints on the “walk of fame.” You can do this with nontoxic finger paint and pink or white paper. When you get the pictures developed, place each dog’s photo on their paw print paper and send it to the owners. The kids will love it!
Create a fundraiser to help pets in need. Make your family’s pet the poster pup. Offer cookies for 25 cents or pictures with Santa Paws with your pet dressed as Old Saint Nick. If you choose a Christmas fundraiser, your kids can dress up as elves! You can even offer “paw print autographs” if your pet is well trained. Some worthy charitable causes include service dog centers, humane societies, and also donating to family’s in the area who could use a little help feeding or caring for their pets.
Sure… Pets are a huge memory-making part of life in and of their selves. However, they can also be the cornerstone for creating memories with your children. Get creative and remember that nothing is too silly. Sometimes the things that seem most ridiculous of all are the ones that color our lives in ways that we will never forget.