We have National Dog Bite Prevention Week and National Take Your Pet to Work Day. Don’t forget Be Kind to Animals Month (it’s May). Such “holidays” with dogs in mind are taking hold.
So, is this smart marketing or just creative ways to celebrate our dogs — or perhaps a little of both? Do you celebrate any of these holidays? And when did this phenomenon of designated doggy days start? These questions keep me up at night, and here is what I discovered:
National Dog Day was created by the National Dog Day Foundation; pet-lifestyle expert and author Colleen Paige founded the day in 2004. President George W. Bush sent a letter to the foundation supporting the special 24 hours for Fido.
Every August 26, the world rejoices in the name of dog. According to its website, the day is designed to encourage dog ownership of both mixed and purebred canines, and for them to live a “happy, safe, and abuse-free life.” Around this household, every day is dog day, as my pooch is the king of the castle. No doubt, many Dogster readers can relate.
What about some of the more off-the-beaten path holidays? Did you know that April 24 to 30 is National Scoop the Poop Week? Neither did I, but cleaning up after Fido constitutes its own seven-day recognition. How about we make every day scoop-it-up day? It’s good for the environment and a courtesy to neighbors and passersby.
National Dress Your Pet Up Day is in January, so get all those Christmas sweaters and give them a second life. Dogs walk the catwalk, so is it any wonder they have their own couture day?
One of the more popular dog holidays is National Take Your Dog to Work Day, and perhaps you and your pooch have participated. Begun in 1999 by Pet Sitters International, it encourages dogs in the workplace in an effort to raise pet adoption awareness.
Beyond the fluffy and smartly marketed campaigns (i.e., Pet Owner’s Independence Day), several months dedicated to notions of Fido’s well-being can be lifesaving. February is Pet Dental Health Month. I recall taking my last Cocker Spaniel, Brandy, to Cornell for an orthopedic appointment.
In attempting to discern her age by looking at her teeth, the veterinarian guessed three to four, when she was actually nine at the time. I brushed her teeth every night, and do the same for my dog Dexter. It really does help, so thanks to the American Veterinary Medical Association’s reminder to pet parents to brush and keep teeth clean.
The folks at TheUltimateHolidaySite make note of a holiday that stopped me in my tracks. In fact, I might even give it a high five — or paw. March 3 is If Pets Had Thumbs Day.
Some of these holidays really do take special consideration of the plight of homeless and abused animals. November is Adopt a Senior Dog Month, and anyone who has ever brought a golden oldie into their hearts can celebrate.
Firefighter and nationally recognized fire safety expert Dayna Hilton, aka “Firefighter Dayna,” teaches fire safety year-round with the help of her trusted canine. When the time comes to change the batteries in the smoke alarms, Hilton and her pooch spread the message. National Fire Safety Week and Month take on a whole new meaning to the young set when Hilton teaches with a dog by her side.
Are these dogs days of, well, dogs, a marketing and PR ploy to garner more attention to a product or service? Sure, but they also serve the purpose of awareness.
I rasked some of my dog writer and blogger colleagues whether they celebrate any special dog days in their families. Other than birthdays and “gotcha days” (when a dog is adopted and the birthday is unknown), most did not celebrate any. They do, however, write about them to call attention to the plight of certain causes — and to have some fun, too.
So, no harm, no foul. If it’s all in good fun — and even helping to promote animal rights and needs in the process — why not? Besides, I am in the midst of a planning a dog wedding. Interestingly, National Dogs Get Married Day never showed up in any search engine results. Hmm …
What do you think of all these pet-themed holidays? Do you celebrate any special days in your dog’s life? Let us know in the comments!
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