There are so many ways to celebrate our pets! In every month of the year, there are observances to help us take care of and appreciate our furry, feathered, and scaly friends. Choose your favorite events and celebrate with your pet!
Walk Your Pet Month: Bond with your pet on a leisurely stroll through your favorite park or neighborhood. If you live in colder climates, don't forget to bundle up both you and your pet.
Adopt a Rescued Bird Month: Maybe you've adopted a dog or a cat from a shelter, but have you ever considered a bird? These feathery friends need our love, too!
National Train Your Dog Month: Anyone who has ever folded a dog into the family knows how difficult it can be in the beginning to teach them the rules of the house. Start the year right by setting your dog up for obedience success.
Unchain a Dog Month: Don't leave your dog chained outside in the cold!
- Jan. 2: Happy Mew Year for Cats Day: It's a New Year's celebration just for cats! Spoil yours today or welcome an abandoned cat into your home.
- Jan. 2: National Pet Safety Travel Day: Are you traveling for family or friend reunions at this time of year? Be sure to keep your pet safe on car rides and plane flights.
- Jan. 5: National Bird Day: Help raise awareness for birds stolen from their natural habitats and locked in captivity.
- Jan. 6: National Cuddle Up Day: On cold January days, what could be better than cuddling with your pet on the couch?
- Jan. 14: National Seeing Eye Dog Day: Every day, Seeing Eye dogs help the visually impaired live their lives. Let's show them our appreciation for their service.
- Jan. 14: National Dress Up Your Pet Day: The name says it all! When choosing a costume for your pet, make sure that your pet is comfortable in it and it doesn't restrict their movement.
- Jan. 21: Squirrel Appreciation Day: Yes, this is a real holiday. Believe it or not, squirrels play an important role in the environment. Plus, they provide recreation for your squirrel-chasing pooch.
- Jan. 24: Change a Pet's Life Day: Every year, more than 6 million companion animals enter shelters in the United States, and usually, only half of them are adopted. Let's change that statistic so that more precious animals find forever families.
Pet Dental Health Month: Your pet's dental health is as important as yours. Make an appointment to bring your companion to the vet for a cleaning!
Dog Training Education Month: Every day, teach your dog a new activity.
National Cat Health Month: Schedule an animal veterinary appointment for your kitty.
Responsible Pet Owners Month: Brush up on what you know about training, feeding, cleaning, exercising, and traveling with your pet.
National Prevent a Litter Month: By spaying and neutering dogs and cats, we reduce the number of puppies and kittens that have no homes and that shelters may eventually euthanize because of excess supply.
Spay/Neuter Awareness Month: This ties in with National Prevent a Litter Month. Book a spay/neuter surgery for your pet this month.
Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month: Rabbits make for perfect, sweet pets for owners who are allergic to dog and cat fur, live in the city, or want a good listener and snuggler.
Second Week of February: Have a Heart for Chained Dogs Week: Help the Dogs Deserve Better organization stop the practice of chaining dogs by sending valentines educating people owners about the dangers of leaving their pets chained outside and advantages of bringing them inside.
- Feb. 2: Groundhog Day: Will we have six more weeks of winter, or will spring begin? Let's cross our fingers that Punxsutawney Phil doesn't see his shadow!
- Feb. 14: Pet Theft Awareness Day: Annually, about two million pets are stolen in America. Equip your pet with the right identification, either microchipping or tattooing, to prevent this from happening.
- Feb. 20: National Love Your Pet Day: This is a Valentine's Day designed just for pets! Buy them a special treat or new toy or play their favorite games.
- Feb. 22: Walk Your Dog Day: What dog doesn't like going on walks? Take your dog down their favorite trail for some quality owner/pet bonding time. It might be chilly, so plan accordingly.
- Feb. 23: International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day: Whether given for training, rewards, or dental hygiene, a biscuit is a much-beloved treat for dogs. Buy your dog's favorite brand, or maybe try baking some of your own.
Poison Prevention Awareness Month: You may not know it, but your home and your yard may very well be rife with substances that are poisonous to your animals, including chocolate, certain vitamins and minerals, cold and flu medication, grapes, and even lilies.
Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig Month: Who can resist the round furriness and tiny face of a guinea pig? Shelters overflow with guinea pigs in need of families. Will you be one?
First Full Week: Professional Pet-Sitters Week: More than half of pet owners have used a professional pet-sitting service in the past year. Let's take a day to thank these animal-loving blessings.
- March 1: National Peanut Butter Lover's Day: Humans love peanut butter, and so do dogs! Share some with your pooch today. Just be sure that your jar of creamy goodness doesn't have xylitol, which is deadly for dogs.
- March 3: International Ear Care Day: Schedule an appointment to have your pet's ears checked. Be on the lookout for ear infections. Symptoms include scratching, foul odors, and head shaking.
- March 3: If Pets Had Thumbs Day: Imagine all of the trouble pets could find if they had opposable thumbs!
- March 13: K-9 Veterans Day: Veterans include both humans and animals. Through the years military dogs have helped soldiers on the front lines.
- March 23: National Puppy Day: Visit a local shelter or pound and love on these four-footed friends.
- March 28: Respect Your Cat Day: Your cat is descended from the mighty lion, the king of the jungle! Why not treat them like royalty?
- March 30: Take a Walk in the Park Day: Bring your pet along! Animals like being outside as much as people.
National Pet Month: We all love our pets. Let's take time to celebrate how much they enrich our lives.
National Heartworm Awareness Month: Heartworm in pets comes from mosquito bites. Once your pet has this disease, it's expensive and difficult to cure. Take action this month to immunize your pets.
National Pet First Aid Awareness Month: How should you care for your pet in an emergency? April is just the month to learn about pet first aid, from treating injuries to caring for your pet if he or she something poisonous.
National Greyhound Adoption Month: As greyhound racing tracks close and racers retire, thousands of greyhounds have entered shelters in need of families. Why not adopt one of these graceful, gentle sweeties?
Prevent Lyme Disease in Dogs Month: Dogs love to spend time outdoors, frolicking through grass and leaves. As fun as this is to watch, this innocuous play puts them in greater contact with ticks, which spread Lyme disease. Apply topical preventatives or schedule your dog to receive a vaccine to avoid this.
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month: Could you ever imagine anyone hurting your sweet animals? Be the voice for the animals who can't protect themselves against human abuse.
April 1-7: International Pooper-Scooper Week: Support your community and remember to clean up after your dog.
Second Full Week: National Animal Control Appreciation Week: Animal care and control agencies are at the forefront in combating animal abuse and making the community safe for us and our pets. Extend a thank you this week.
Third Full Week: National Pet ID Week: Take steps now so that you can find your pet if they run away. Always make sure your dog or cat is wearing an ID tag.
Third Full Week: Animal Cruelty/Human Violence Awareness Week: Nobody has the right to mistreat anyone, animal or human. Fight against animal cruelty and human violence!
- First Saturday of April: Every Day Is Tag Day: Make sure your pets are wearing tags so that shelters can reunite you with them in the event that they are ever lost.
- First Wednesday of April: National Walking Day: Commit to walking 30 minutes with your dog every day.
- April 2: National Ferret Day: Ferrets are lively, intelligent animals that are sadly misunderstood. Take a day to learn more about these wonderful pets.
- April 6: National Siamese Cat Day: One of the most popular, and arguably one of the most elegant, cat breeds, Siamese deserve a day in the limelight.
- April 11: National Pet Day: It's National Pet Month, so it makes sense that there is a focused National Pet Day in it.
- April 11: Dog Therapy Appreciation Day: Therapy dogs help put smiles on the faces of hurting people. Find a therapy dog near you and put a smile on their face!
- April 21: Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day: Contrary to common opinion, bulldogs, with their wrinkly, slobbery faces, are beautiful! Let's pamper them today.
- April 23: National Lost Dog Awareness Day: You probably know or can imagine the devastation of losing a dog. Help raise awareness about lost dogs and take preventative measures to protect yours and others.
- April 30: National Tabby Day: Did you know that more than 80% of domesticated cats are tabbies? No wonder they have their own day!
- April 30 National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day: If you look, you're sure to find a pet that belongs in your family.
- Last Wednesday of April: International Guide Dog Day: Guide dogs are dedicated and loyal to the people they take care of. Show them the same love.
- Last Saturday of April: World Veterinary Day: Let's not forget the veterinarians who keep our pets healthy!
- Last Sunday of April: National Pet Parents Day: What pet owner doesn't know the special connection between human and animal?
Chip Your Pets Month: Microchipping your pet is a quick and easy way to locate them for when they inevitably wander a little too far from home.
Lyme Disease Prevention Month: In case you missed April, take action now in May to prevent Lyme disease in your pets.
National Service Dog Eye Examination Month: Free eye examinations are available from the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists for our hardworking, faithful service dogs.
First Full Week: National Pet Week: Join other pet owners as we work to ensure the health, happiness, and safety of our best (nonhuman!) friends.
First Full Week: Be Kind to Animals Week: We should be kind to animals all year long, but it doesn't hurt to have a special reminder.
Monday Before Mother's Day: Puppy Mill Action Week: We can be the voice for the thousands of dogs forced to have puppies over and over to fill the demands of pet stores and online pet suppliers.
- First Sunday of May: Mayday for Mutts: Down with canine discrimination! Mutts have just as much value as purebreds; let's take a day to celebrate them.
- May 1: National Purebred Dog Day: We've had a couple of days for mutts. Now, the purebreds deserve a day.
- May 3: National Specially-abled Pets Day: For pets with physical disabilities, life can be a little harder. Today is the day to learn more about these special and specially-abled animals.
- May 3: Hug Your Cat Day: Give Mittens a loving squeeze!
- May 5: National Ferret Day: Hooray, another Ferret Day!
- May 8: National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day: Disasters are a part of life. Do you know how to care for your pet in these times?
- May 14: International Chihuahua Appreciation Day: Whether deer-head or apple-head, you can't deny that Chihuahuas are irresistibly adorable.
- May 30: International Hug Your Cat Day: Wait, didn't I just hug my cat on the third? Yes, but this time, it's international.
Adopt-a-Cat Month: For the height of kitten season, consider raising your own feline companion.
Adopt-a-Shelter-Cat-Month: Shelter cats need homes, too! Visit a nearby animal shelter and you might find yourself a new family member.
National Pet Preparedness Month: Pet owners have a month-long reminder to prepare their animal companions for emergencies.
National Microchipping Month: Microchipping better ensures the quick and safe return of your pet should it ever be lost.
Social Petworking Month: Your home may not be the right place for an animal, but you can still help an animal find a forever home online. Take to social media and spread the word!
First week: Pet Appreciation Week: No matter what kind of animal they are, all pets are valued members of the family. Take this week to really appreciate how much richer your life is with them in it!
Week After Father's Day: Take Your Pet to Work Week: If your boss allows, show your pet around the place where you earn the money to bring home the kibble.
- Second Tuesday of June: World Pet Memorial Day: A special thanks goes out to pets past and the wonderful memories they gave us.
- Third Friday of June: Ugliest Dog Day: They might not look like show winners on the outside, but we know they're beautiful on the inside.
- June 4: National Hug Your Cat Day: You may or may not be pushing your luck, but go ahead and show your kitty some more love!
- June 6: National Running Day: Lace up those sneakers and go on a run with your dog!
- June 19: National Garfield Day: For all of the lazy cats, this day's for you.
- June 21: National Dog Party Day: Arrange a play date with your dog's canine neighbors.
Dog House Repair Month: Congratulations: You've survived the snow of winter and the rains of spring! Now might be a good time to assess your dog's outdoor home.
National Lost Pet Prevention Month: Losing a pet is devastating. Take steps now to prevent this tragedy.
- July 4: Independence Day: If your pet is sensitive to fireworks, take the necessary steps to reduce their anxiety.
- July 11: All-American Pet Photo Day: Follow your pets around armed with nothing but a camera and an eye for cuteness.
- July 15: National Pet Fire Safety Day: Don't forget your pets when you're making a family fire evacuation plan.
- July 21: National Craft for Your Local Shelters Day: Brighten your local animal shelter with DIY treats and toys.
- July 21: No Pet Store Puppies Day: Many, if not most, pet store puppies comes from puppy mills. Raise awareness and stop the cruelty.
- July 31: National Mutt Day: Purebreds might be nice, but let's not forget the amazingness of mixed-breeds, too.
Month of "DOGust": August belongs to the dogs.
- First Sunday of August: International Assistance Dog Week: To the dogs who work tirelessly so that we can live well, we salute you.
- Third Saturday of Aug: International Homeless Animals Day: Is there anything sadder in the pet realm than an animal without a home?
- Aug. 1: DOGust Universal Birthday for Shelter Dogs: On August 1, all shelter dogs celebrate another year. Throw a party to advocate for shelter dog adoption.
- Aug. 8: International Cat Day: According to one psychologist, "Time spent with cats is never wasted."
- Aug. 10: Spoil Your Dog Day: If we needed an excuse to show our dogs how much we love and appreciate them, here's a good one.
- Aug. 15: National Check the Chip Day: Are your dog's chips and registration information up to date?
- Aug. 17: National Black Cat Appreciation Day: Harbingers of misfortune though they may be, black cats are just as amazing as any other kind.
- Aug. 22: National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day: Even if Mittens doesn't want to go, cats need their checkups.
- Aug. 26: National Dog Day: Beyond raining love on your dog and the hardworking dogs in your community, you can give your time today to help bring rescued dogs home.
- Aug. 30: National Holistic Pet Day: Like humans, pets need both physical, emotional, and mental needs met for optimal health.
Happy Healthy Cat Month: Keep up with the health and wellness of your feline friend.
National Guide Dogs Month: A special thanks goes out in September to the schools that give us the guide dogs that help the blind see.
National Pet Insurance Month: Do your have insurance that will cover your pet in the event of injury or illness?
Animal Pain Awareness Month: Because they can't speak, our pets show us through body language and behavior that they are in pain. Be on the lookout for signs.
National Pet Memorial Month: We are so grateful for the joy that the pets now gone from us brought. They were more than animals; they were family.
Third Full Week of September: National Farm Animals Awareness Week: Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O. And on his farm, he had some amazing animals!
Last Full Week of September: National Dog Week: Need we say more? Here's a week to celebrate dogs in all shapes and sizes and all that they do for us.
Last Full Week of September: Deaf Pet Awareness Week: If you open your home to a deaf pet, you will be more than compensated by the love they will give you in return.
Last Full Week of September: Adopt a Less Adoptable Pet Week: This includes older pets, disabled pets, "bad reputation" breeds, and pets with traumatic histories.
- Second Sunday of September: National Hug Your Hound Day: We're sure your pup will welcome the attention!
- Second Sunday of September: National Pet Memorial Day: This ties in with the whole National Pet Memorial Month.
- Sept. 1: Ginger Cat Appreciation Day: They add a little spice to your lives.
- Sept. 4: National Wildlife Day: Advocate for the ancestors of your pets.
- Sept. 28: World Rabies Day: Vaccinate your pet to stop transmission. Frothing at the mouth is attractive on no one.
- Third Saturday of September: Puppy Mill Awareness Day: Help animal advocacy groups shut down puppy mills.
- Third Saturday of September: Responsible Dog Ownership Day: Dogs deserve the best care we can give them.
National Pitbull Awareness Month: Pitbulls can be such loving dogs. The time to reverse their negative image is now.
Adopt a Dog Month: If you aren't in a position to adopt a dog now, you can help others adopt by connecting them to pets in need of homes or volunteering at your local shelter.
Adopt a Shelter Dog Month: Adopt, fundraise, or give: Anything helps to bring these dogs to loving homes.
National Animal Safety and Protection Month: As we come into the busy holiday season, it can be easy to let some matters slide. Don't let your animal's safety be one of them!
First Full Week of October: Animal Welfare Week: Work together to ensure the health and happiness of animals around the world.
First Full Week of October: National Walk Your Dog Week: Go enjoy beautiful autumn weather with Fido.
Third Full Week of October: National Veterinary Technician Week: Thank your veterinary technician for caring for your pet's health through the years.
- Second Wednesday of October: National Pet Obesity Awareness Day: A little love, combined with diet and exercise, can help your pet lose weight.
- Oct. 1: National Fire Pup Day: These brave dogs work beside firefighters every day in search-and-rescue efforts.
- Oct. 1: National Black Dog Day: Have you heard of "black dog syndrome"? Lighter-furred dogs are adopted more often than dark-furred dogs, even though the latter have just as much love to give.
- Oct. 4: World Animal Day: Animal-lovers gather to improve conditions for animals around the world, from abused pets to endangered animals.
- Oct. 16: Global Cat Day: In ancient times, they were treated as royalty!
- Oct. 28: National Pit Bull Awareness Day: Combat myths, promote the truth, and save lives of pit bulls.
- Oct. 30: National Black Cat Day: If anything, these cats are good and happy luck.
Pet Cancer Awareness Month: Watching a pet with cancer is devastating; you can't explain to them what's happening. Learn preventative measures you can take to reduce your pet's chance of developing this disease.
Adopt a Senior Pet Month: Give a home to an older animal who still needs the love of a family.
Pet Diabetes Month: Like in humans, several factors put animals at risk for Type II diabetes. Learn the symptoms and treatments.
First Week of November: National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week: From loving on abandoned animals to connecting you with your new best friend, animal shelters do so much that deserves our recognition.
- Nov. 1: National Cook for Your Pets Day: Enough of leftovers! Make some time to cook your pet a meal just for them.
- Nov. 7: National Canine Lymphoma Awareness Day: Know the signs so that you can act as soon as possible to fight your pet's lymphoma, also called lymphatic cancer.
- Nov. 17: National Take a Hike Day: Bring your pet, of course! Also bring plenty of hydration and sustenance for you and your companion.
Cat-Lovers Month: Cats rule; dogs drool!
- Dec. 2: National Mutt Day: It's a second round of appreciation for our mixed-breed friends.
- Dec. 5: International Volunteer Day: Animal shelters need all of the help they can get. Spread a little holiday cheer at a local shelter.
- Dec. 25: Christmas: Maybe make a little stocking of fun toys and treats for your pet to open with you on Christmas morning.
- Dec. 31: New Year's Eve: A worthwhile resolution: Spending more time with your lovely animals.
Have fun celebrating with your pets this year!
Pet Health and Safety Resources
Written By Ava Rose.