International Cat Day

Honestly, isn’t this every day at my house? Officially, International Cat Day was created in 2002 by the International Fund for Animal Welfare and other animal rights groups. So you have an official 24 hours to venerate your Fur Person of the feline persuasion as they likely demand.

You may now pay your respects by kissing the paw. This one only.

Garrus and Charlie are most particular about their regular sunbath treatments and lounging areas.

“All right, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up.” Photo courtesy of Pexels

DOGust and Universal Birthday for Shelter Dogs

Happy DOGust everyone! And, whew, it is HOT. So obviously it’s time for indoor parties. Do you throw birthday parties for your pets? I have friends who celebrate their dogs’ birthdays. However, if you don’t always know your dog’s birthdate. Thanks to the efforts of the North Shore Animal League and the ASPCA, the month of DOGust and the Universal Birthday for Shelter and Rescue Dogs came into being!

Photo courtesy of Pexels

At a loss at how to throw a DOGust-worthy “pawty”? Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  1. If you’re going to have any outdoor activities, do it early in the morning and in the shade. Dogs can get overheated and sun- or heatstroke.
  2. Offer lots of water to human and canine guests to keep them cool and comfortable.
  3. Don’t forget refreshments. Peanut butter treats would be a good idea, or, for the ambitious, a bone-shaped puppy cake.
  4. Provide splash time in a kiddie pool and lots of toys so everyone can play. If some want to play inside, that’s okay too.
  5. In lieu of presents for your pup, request that guests make a donation to a local shelter or rescue group. This can be cash, supplies, time, or skills!
  6. For party favors, all the canine attendees could get bandanas.
  7. Remember to take plenty of snazzy photos!
  8. Have fun!

Photo courtesy of The Dodo

Pet Photo Day

Clearly we need such a holiday! I couldn’t find the creator of this lighthearted pet holiday but still appreciate the sentiment. Onwards to pet photos!

Garrus really enjoys snoozing on the ottoman. In the afternoon he sunbathes here. This is also one of his favorite visiting spots. I’ve been able to occasionally put him on my lap and give him scritches.

Charlie found himself a sunny spot. This is an excellent dual birdwatching and meditation perch.

Mau chills out on the chair, patiently waiting for a human lap to appear.

Feel free to share your pet photos in the comments!

National Best Friends Day

Happy National Best Friends Day!

Take some time today to let your best friend and all your friends know how much they mean to you and that you appreciate and cherish their friendship! While you’re at it, pass along such warm regards to your pet friends too!

Ten months ago, Aaron and I fostered Garrus and Charlie. They had been introduced to one another at the shelter and immediately hit it off. We did not want to split them up and adopted them both. I might be biased but they really do have the cutest bromance under the sun. If one of them is at the vet or in another room, the other will search for his buddy (Charlie squeaks as he does this). They play games of chase, hide and seek, pounce, and batting toys around the house. Frequently we find them grooming or snuggling together, and it’s always adorable.

You can see why I bought them a dog bed. They need the extra room!

Hug Your Cat Day

Last night a storm blew through our area, filling the night with lots of lightning, thunder, and heavy rain. It knocked the power out for a few hours too. The storm’s noise and emergency weather alerts woke us up. Aaron went into the living room to get his phone and found Garrus lounging unperturbed on the ottoman. Charlie, however, was ill at ease and sought us out. It was a pleasant surprise to find, while partly asleep, Charlie eagerly searching for my hands and purring loudly when I started petting him. I sleepily hugged Charlie and he settled in my arms for about a minute, kneading, before leaving to investigate what rubs Aaron had to offer.

This morning I had an ottoman visit with Garrus. I was able to place him on my lap and give him neck and chest scritches, which he loves, as well as stroking his back and kissing his head. Cue the warm fuzzies when I heard him purring.

Hug Your Cat Day is a fun excuse to give your feline companion a little extra love. If your cat is not a cuddler or into being held, respect that. Instead try a play session, tasty treats, back strokes, and/or quality bonding time together.

Pet Appreciation Week

The first full week in June–Sunday, June 3rd through Saturday, June 9th–is Pet Appreciation Week! Summer is the time for family vacations and fun, so make sure you take the time to acknowledge and truly treasure all the benefits that your pets have brought to your life. My cats bring me joy, laughter, and warm fuzzies, and have taught me about love, family, true friendship, and compassion.

I managed to snap a photo with Charlie looking directly at the camera while Garrus enjoys his buddy’s company.

What do you appreciate most about your pets? What lessons have they taught you? Share in the comments!

Be Kind to Animals Week

The first full week of May is Be Kind to Animals Week. Did you know that Be Kind to Animals Week is the oldest commemorative week in US history and the nation’s longest-running human education campaign? Neat, isn’t it?

Photo courtesy of Pexels

Be Kind to Animals Week is an annual celebration that spotlights the crucial importance of kindness and compassion to all animals, pets and non-pets alike.

Photo courtesy of Pexels

Here are a few ways you can participate in this altruistic week year-round:

  1. Volunteer and/or donate to an animal shelter or rescue group. Walk dogs. Socialize cats. Hold rabbits. Bottle-feed kittens or puppies and give the shelter employees a well-deserved break.
  2. Foster a shelter animal. You can also pet-sit for a friend so said pet does not have to be boarded.
  3. Use cruelty-free products.
  4. Help out feral cats. You can do this by providing food, water, and even a shelter. You can also donate to a catch-spay/neuter-release program in your area.
  5. Protect the environment. Recycle, reduce, reuse. Don’t litter because (a) it’s gross and (b) animals can get sick, injured, or die from eating or getting tangled in plastic or other materials. Recycle and dispose of toxins safely. Use safe dish detergents and paper instead of Styrofoam. Be mindful that a lot of our waste ends up in the sea.
  6. Run a 5K or participate in a fundraiser that benefits animals. Ask your animal shelter or humane society for ways you get can get involved.
  7. Leave wild animals in their natural homes. While it’s tempting to bring home a snail, lizard, snake, or baby bird for the sake of scientific curiosity, instead practice kindness and naturalistic observation (a la Sir David Attenborough).
  8. Plant a garden. More specifically, plant a butterfly garden or other vegetation that attracts bees, hummingbirds, and other wildlife. Bonus: pretty colors.

“No act of kindness, not matter how small, is ever wasted.” ~Aesop

Photo courtesy of Pexels