How to Celebrate National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day


Created to raise awareness for the many pets awaiting adoption from shelters, National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day is a great excuse to celebrate shelter pet adoption and make the day a little brighter while observing this meaningful holiday.

National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day occurs at the very end of April on the 30th, which means there is plenty of time to celebrate and help shelter pets in need.

Consider making this holiday an excuse to get a group of friends or coworkers together. A love of animals is a great way to bond with people. It is something you have in common that can lead to shared stories, exchanges and stronger friendships.

Group volunteering at a shelter is an option for friends and/or coworkers to celebrate this holiday. Make sure to set this up with your local shelter in advance.

Most shelters need support in the form of donations. If you get approval at a workplace, school or place of worship, you can put out some large donation boxes for food, blankets, cat litter, toys, paper towels and bath towels. A smaller box can collect monetary donations.

Since shelters need help all year, this team-building group activity can easily be repeated and is not limited to once a year. Doing good feels good and working together to help animals can solidify existing friendships and build new ones.

Parties with a Pet Theme

Once the donations are collected and/or volunteering takes place, you can have a cute party to celebrate everyone’s generosity. You could decorate the party with printed pics of the animals that need homes, cut-outs of animal shapes draped over the table and cups, plates and napkins with cute pet prints and fresh flowers.

Even if you don’t put together a volunteering event or collect donations at a workplace, you can still have a party with a pet theme in celebration of National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. Send out cute cat and dog invitations with real pets that need homes and ask guests to bring donations for the shelter.

Seeing photos of real animals often puts things into perspective for people and will likely encourage people to donate, and some may even consider adoption.

If you have a projector or television, you could put together and play a montage of pics and videos of the shelter animals during your party. Serve kitty cakes and pup cakes along with easy appetizers or finger foods.

Festive for Felines

The abundance of cat videos on the Internet has made cats famous, even with non-cat people. If you have a special fondness for felines, you can design your party to benefit shelter pets with a theme devoted entirely to cats.

Just like previously mentioned ideas, you can send out cat invitations with requests for donations to your local shelter. You can even add some info about cats for anyone who may be interested in a feline family member.

There is no shortage of ideas for parties with a cat theme, so feel free to get creative with cat decorations, party favors and décor. You can hand out cat ears and cat eye-shaped glasses as party favors at the door, and there are tons of plastic plates, cups and napkins with cats. You can wow your guests with cat-shaped sandwiches and a cat-shaped cake.

If you have a cat, you might be tempted to invite other cats to the party, but this is probably not a good idea. Cats can be territorial, and you don’t want your cat party to benefit the shelter marred by a catfight.

Partying for Pups

If you want to have a doggone good time, a pup party is a fun and furry way to celebrate National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. Since dogs are quite social, you can have a party with pups. Dogs must already be socialized and closely supervised.

If your dog has puppy pals at the dog park, consider inviting some furry friends over for your party. Hand out cute invitations. Instead of asking people to bring a beverage or dish, ask them to bring something they can donate to benefit shelter pets.

There are affordable backdrops available that can create awesome photos of the pet partygoers for social media. Posting party photos can also raise awareness and get people motivated to have their own parties to benefit shelter pets.

You can order pet treats like pup cakes with flavors of bacon and blueberry. There are also recipes to make your own treats. Don’t forget to furnish some snacks and beverages for your human guests. You can also make things like pretzels and sandwiches shaped like dog bones, pupcakes and various bite-sized snacks you can serve in dog bowls.

Depending on how much space you have for your puppy party, you can even order plastic balls to fill up a kiddie pool for playtime. If you are outdoors, you can use a kiddie pool as a dog pool, but make sure you have plenty of towels and an area set aside for cleaning up after playtime.

For Those Who Have Adopted a Shelter Pet

If parties or volunteering are too much for your schedule to accommodate, you can still celebrate National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day with flower delivery. Think of someone you know who has adopted a shelter pet. Send them a nice surprise. You can donate to an animal shelter in the pet’s name and send him or her a pretty bouquet and some cute toys for the adopted pet.

Not only will this gesture remind them that you pay attention and notice what is important to them, it will also let them know that you care and want to remind them of the life-changing good deed that occurred because they adopted a pet in need.

For Those Who Have Lost an Adopted Pet

For many, the sadness that coincides with the loss of a pet can be difficult to overcome. A person who has lost a beloved pet may feel lost and alone and may not know that you care.

Even if the loss was not recent, this holiday is a good way to let the person know that you understand how deeply the loss was felt. Consider donating to an animal shelter in memory of the person’s pet.

You could print the donation and include it in a card with a heartfelt message letting the person know that you care. It can be sent with a gift basket or a bouquet.

Whether you know someone who has adopted a shelter pet or you know someone who has lost an adopted pet, sending a cute gift and donation to a shelter on their behalf is a sweet gesture that will be appreciated.

For gifts you can send as a surprise in celebration of National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day, consider asking our florists at Flower Island in Chula Vista, CA, to create a personal bouquet specific to the circumstances.

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