We all love holidays. Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter are my favorites but did you know there are holidays for pets too? (And they’re not Dog Day Afternoons either!)
Not Only Days But Entire Months
January is “Adopt-a-Rescued-Bird Month,” so you have an entire month to find that rescue bird and adopt him or her. In February you have “Responsible Pet Owners Month,” so I hope you’re a responsible pet owner! March is “Dolphin Awareness Month,” April is “National Frog Month.” And the list goes on for the months but let us begin with organization at the beginning of the year with the month of…
Take note, these dates may vary from year to year, but January’s not only “Adopt a Rescued Bird Month” but also “National Walk Your Pet Month.” So get out and walk your pet (that is, if you’re in a warmer climate.) On January 2nd you also have “National Pet Travel Safety Day” (check it out at: www.pettravelsafetyday.com).
On the 14th is “National Dress Up Your Pet Day!” (Dressupyourpetday.com) so get out all of those dressy outfits and take your pet out on the town! But watch out for all those nuts on January 21st because, yes folks, it’s “Squirrel Appreciation Day.” If you own a cat you better brush up on your cat’s concerns as “National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day” is on the 22nd! January 29th is an important day for the Guide Dog – The “Seeing Eye Guide Dog Birthday!”
For the entire month of February we have “Responsible Pet Owners Month” as well as “National Prevent a Litter Month” (Humane Society) and “Pet Dental Health Month.” For the entire week of Valentine’s we mark a time to care for of those mistreated canines chained to our hearts by observing “Have a Heart for Chained Dogs” week.
The 1st of the month slithers in with not only “Serpent’s Day” but also races in with “Champion Crab Races Day!” The 14th of the month is “Pet Theft Awareness Day” while on the 20th we’ll observe “Love your pet day” and I’m sure we all do! “Walking the Dog Day” heels on the 22nd and on the 23rd your dog will sit up for “National Dog Biscuit Day.” But you may hear a cry on that same day which marks “Spay Day USA!”
The 1st of the month observes “National Pig Day” and “National Horse Protection Day” (www.horseprotectionday.org) so slop around with those pigs then take sugar cubes to your equestrian friends. The entire 1st week of March is “Professional Pet Sitter’s Week” (so this goes out to my friend, “Sue,” who loves her pet sitting stints)!
March 13th is “If Pets Had Thumbs Day” and all the monkey owners, zoo keepers, and caretakers know what that means! On this same day we honor the brave dogs who serve because it’s “K9 Veterans Day!” We all give a special thanks to all K9 vets!
Let’s flutter fly with all of the butterflies on the 14th because it’s “Learn About Butterflies Day!”
There’s even a day for the buzzard on the 15th because it’s “Buzzard’s Day.” “Pet Poison Prevention Week” is the 3rd week in March and the 18th marks “Sparky the Fire Dog’s Birthday” – happy birthday Sparky!
Everyone is or will be in love with the 23rd of March – it’s “National Puppy Day!” (www.nationalpuppyday.org)
This Awareness Month hosts the “Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month,” “National Pet First Aid Awareness Month,” “National Heartworm Awareness Month,” and “National Pet Month.”
I know many people will be squeamish the first week of April (1 to the 7th) because it’s “Be Kind to Spiders Week.” The first week also marks where the dog leaves it’s mark for its
“International Pooper Scooper Week” so scoop up that poop as your dog’s paw (poop) print can affect the environment!
“National Animal Control Appreciation Week” is the 2nd week of April and on the 10th is “ASPCA Day” – The Humane Society’s Birthday!
“Every Day Is Tag Day” is on April 1st. April 2nd is “National Ferret Day.” The 11th marks “National Pet Day” while the 3rd week in April is “National Pet ID Week.”
Ribbit…ribbit…”Save the Frogs Day” and don’t let them croak hops in on April 16th and two days later, on the 18th, is “Pet Owners Independence Day.”
“National Animal Cracker Day” is on the 19th while, ahem, clear your throat for “National Hairball Awareness Day” on April 25th. The day following is “National Kids & Pets Day!” The last Saturday in April closes the month with “World Veterinary Day.” April was a long pet month, wasn’t it?!
“National Disabled Pets Day” is May 3rd and the 1st week of May is “National Pet Week,” “Be Kind to Animals Week,” plus “Puppy Mill Action Week!”
“Respect for Chickens Day” is on May 4th. (No chicken dinners are allowed on this day, Mr. Perdue!) “Frog Jumping Jubilee Day” is on May19th and May 23rd is “World Turtle Day.”
“Animal Disaster Preparedness Day” lands on the 2nd Saturday in May while the 3rd week lands “National Dog Bite Prevention Week.”
And check out when the “Slugs Return to Capistrano Day” on May 28th when slugs return to all our gardens and patios (walking barefoot is not advised)!
“Adopt a Shelter Cat Month” is all of June so get out and adopt a feline friend and don’t forget to hug your cat on June 4th which is “Hug Your Cat Day!” “Carpenter Ant Awareness Week” is from June 20th through the 26th (some people keep ants as pets!)
June 2nd is “Cobras in North America Day” and June 12th is “Pet Memorial Day.” “Take Your Dog to Work Day” closes June’s pet holidays on June 20th. For all of those Cuckoo Clock Owners, “Cuckoo Warning Day” is June 21st. And for all Disney lovers, “Donald Duck Day” is on June 9th.
July (The Moo Month)
“Cow Appreciation Day” is udderly fantastic on the 12th and July 15th marks “National Pet Fire Safety Day” while “Cow Appreciation Day” milks in on the 18th. “Mutt’s Day” closes July on the 31st.
“Pet Fashion Week” is the last week of August. The “Universal Birthday of Rescued Dogs” is celebrated on August 1st but the entire first full week of August celebrates “International Assistance Dog Week.”
We all “Work Like a Dog Day” on August 5th while on August 8th we celebrate “World Cat Day.” The 10th is “Spoil Your Dog Day” while on August 20th you can give a homeless animal a home on “National Homeless Animals Day.”
National Dog Day is August 26th (www.nationaldogday.org) and “National Holistic Pet Day” closes the month on the 30th.
September is “National Pet Insurance Month” and believe you me, I’m thinking about it after that last vet bill!
“National Pet Memorial Day” is the 2nd Sunday of September and “National Wildlife Day” is September 4th (www.nationalwildlifeday.org).
September 13th is “Pet Birth Defect Awareness Day.” “Dogs in Politics Day” on the 23rd recognizes the dogs of politicians and is also known as Checkers Day.
We have “World Rabies Day” on the 28th and “International Rabbit Day” hops in on the 4th Sunday of September.
September’s last week marks “National Dog Week.”
“Adopt a Shelter Dog Month”,” “National Animal Safety and Protection Month,” and “National Animal Pet Wellness Month” is throughout all of October.
We’re down on the farm as we celebrate “World Farm Animal Day” on the 2nd! “National Pet Obesity Awareness Day” is the 2nd Wednesday in October while all dogs love to tear apart those plush animals on October 28th, why? Because it’s “Plush Animal Lover’s Day,” that’s why!
“National Feral Cat Day” is October 16th and “National Cat Day” closes the month on October 29th (www.nationalcatday.org).
This entire month is devoted to all of those beloved senior pets as November is “Senior Pet Month.” This is also “Pet Cancer Awareness Month” and “Pet Diabetes Awareness Month.”
“National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week” is the 1st full week of November and the 17th marks “National Black Cat Day.”
“National Mutt’s Day” is on December 2nd and I just love my mutt (www.nationalmuttday.org)! Get your horse and herding dog ready for “Cat Herding Day” on December 15th. More information can be found at the Joy of Cat Herding Blog. December 4th is “World Wildlife Conservation Day.” “Visit the Zoo Day” closes the year of holidays on the 27th!
Get in on the Celebration!
While some of these Pet Awareness Days have been created just for fun, they also have been created to serve a purpose. That purpose is to promote health and animal welfare and to increase your animal awareness. If you’d like to get involved in the celebration of any of these pet holidays, seek out your local pet shelters, animal hospitals, and rescue groups who may host some pet holiday special events! Getting out there and enjoying these holidays is just the beginning – you never know, you may meet some new animal friends (and human friends, too!)
By Tom Matteo
About the Author
Tom Matteo has been a freelance writer since 1992. He has written hardware and software reviews for computers and gaming systems, and now writes about animal behavior and care. Tom resides in Bethlehem, PA with his wife, Tina, and their beloved cockapoo, Angel.