At A Pup Above, we're not just passionate about creating the tastiest, most nutritious meals for your dogs — we also love to celebrate the joy and companionship they bring into our lives. 

National Dog Day is a highlight on our calendar, a day to shower our dogs with extra love and reflect on the incredible bond we share with them. It's a day for wagging tails, big sloppy kisses, and, yes, maybe a special treat or two from our kitchen to theirs. 

Let's dive into what makes National Dog Day special and how you can celebrate it in style.

What Is National Dog Day?

National Dog Day, celebrated on August 26th each year, is much more than a day to spoil your pup with extra cuddles and treats. Founded by pet and family lifestyle expert Colleen Paige, this day is a heartfelt tribute to all dogs, from loyal family companions to hardworking service dogs. 

Colleen's vision was to acknowledge the unconditional love dogs bring into our lives, promote adoption from animal shelters, and raise awareness about the importance of providing a loving, abuse-free life for every dog out there.

It's a day where we celebrate the diverse roles dogs play: from guide dogs that provide independence to law enforcement dogs that keep us safe and every loving sheltie and labrador retriever in between. National Dog Day isn't just about recognizing the joy dogs bring to our personal lives — it's a day to acknowledge their societal contributions, advocate for ethical treatment, and encourage adoption from local shelters over supporting puppy mills. 

10 Celebration Ideas for National Dog Day

National Dog Day is the perfect excuse to go above and beyond for our pups. Here are 10 ideas to make this day unforgettable for you and your dog.

1. Host a Gourmet Dinner Party

Let's kick things off with a feast fit for a king. Whip up a special meal using our human-grade meals, such as the savory Chicka Chicka Bow Wow or the hearty Texas Beef Stew. These meals are not only drool-worthy but packed with nutrition, setting the stage for a celebration that’s as delicious as it is nutritious.

2. Adopt a Friend From a Local Shelter

There's no better way to celebrate National Dog Day than by giving a rescue dog a forever home. Visit your local animal shelter and open your heart to a new dog. Remember, adopting a dog is a lifelong commitment that's as rewarding for you as life-changing for them.

3. Pamper Your Pup With a Spa Day

Everyone loves a day of pampering, including our dogs. Book a session at your local pet spa or set up a spa at home. A warm bath, a gentle brush-out, and maybe even a new hairstyle can make your dog feel like the belle of the ball.

4. Organize a Playdate Picnic

Gather your dog-loving friends and their pups for a picnic at a dog-friendly park. Bring along some pet-approved snacks for the dogs and watch as they play and make new friends. It's a fantastic way for both dogs and dog parents to socialize.

5. Take a Scenic Hike

Explore the great outdoors with your dog. Whether it's a local hiking trail or a visit to a national park (check pet policies first), the fresh air and exercise are great for both of you. Pack plenty of water and some doggy treats, and don't forget to keep your pooch on a leash where required.

6. Capture the Moment

Hire a professional pet photographer or take your own photos of your dog. Create lasting memories by capturing their quirky expressions, playful moments, or serene portraits. Share your favorites on social media using hashtags like #NationalDogDay to join the global celebration.

7. Donate to a Dog Charity

In the spirit of National Dog Day, consider donating to a dog charity or volunteering at your local animal shelter. Your contribution can help provide medical care, food, and shelter for dogs waiting for their forever homes. It's a way to give back and make a significant impact on the lives of many dogs.

8. Teach Your Dog a New Trick

Spend quality time with your dog by teaching them a new trick. Not only is it a fun activity, but it also helps keep their mind sharp and strengthens the bond between you. Reward their hard work with tasty treats and belly rubs, making learning an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

9. Create a DIY Dog Toy

Get creative and make a new toy for your dog. Whether it's a tug rope made from old t-shirts or a puzzle toy to challenge their mind, homemade toys are a great way to add some excitement to your dog’s day. Plus, it's a fun project for you!

10. Host a Dog Movie Night

Wind down the celebrations with a movie night featuring your dog's favorite films. Think "Homeward Bound," "Lassie," or "101 Dalmatians." Settle in with some popcorn for you and some dog-friendly snacks for your pup, and enjoy a cozy night in.

Are There More Days for Dog Enthusiasts To Celebrate?

Absolutely! While National Dog Day is a highlight, the calendar is packed with special days that honor our dogs and the joy they bring into our lives. 

Here's a quick rundown of dates every dog lover should circle, ensuring our beloved canines get the recognition they deserve all year round:

  • National Puppy Day (March 23rd): A day to shower extra love on the littlest pups in our lives. It’s the perfect occasion to reflect on the joy and boundless energy puppies bring into our homes, making them our first dog in many cases and forever our best friend.
  • National Mutt Day (July 31st & December 2nd): Twice the fun with a day dedicated to celebrating the charm and uniqueness of mixed-breed pups. It’s a shout-out to the incredible diversity and personality these dogs bring to our families, emphasizing that every dog, regardless of pedigree, deserves love and a happy home.
  • National Dog Mom Day (Second Sunday in May):A special nod to all the dog moms out there, balancing pet store runs and vet visits, all while providing endless love and cuddles. This day acknowledges the dedication and love dog moms have for their dogs, making them a cherished part of the family dogs category.
  • Hug Your Hound Day (Second Sunday in September): This day encourages us to show affection for our canine companions, recognizing them as an integral part of our lives and true best friends. It's about appreciating the bond we share with our dogs.
  • National Make a Dog’s Day (October 22nd): A relatively new but rapidly growing observance, this day is about doing something special for dogs, especially those waiting for homes in shelters. Whether it’s a special treat, a longer walk, or the gift of adoption, it’s about making a dog's day brighter.
  • National Wildlife Day (September 4th): While primarily focusing on wild animals, this day also reminds us of our dogs' ancestral connections to the wild. It’s an opportunity to appreciate all animals and the importance of conservation efforts worldwide.

Each of these days provides a unique opportunity to celebrate our canine companions, from the puppies who first enter our lives with tiny paws and big hearts to the senior dogs who have been our steadfast friends through thick and thin. They remind us that dog ownership is a journey filled with joy, challenges, and unconditional love.

A Final Word

At A Pup Above, every wag, woof, and slobbery kiss fuels our passion for crafting nourishing, delightful meals and celebrating the incredible bond we share with our dogs. National Dog Day presents a precious opportunity to honor these connections. It's a chance to reflect, celebrate, and commit anew to ensuring our dogs know just how much they're loved today and every day. 

So, let's embrace these moments, making each day a testament to the joy, companionship, and unconditional love our dogs bring to our lives. After all, they're not just pets — they're part of the family.


About National Dog Day | National Dog Day

National Dog Day: Celebrating all the ways that dogs make life better | Earth

Sharing is Caring: Foods You Can Safely Share with Your Pet | ASPCA

NATIONAL DOG MOM'S DAY | Second Saturday in May | National Day Calendar