Valentine’s Day with Pets
Giving and receiving chocolate, flowers and cards may be the traditional acts of love that come to mind when thinking about ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day. These gifts are thought to be shared between two people in love. But Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be just for people.
Sharing Valentine’s Day with pets can create a special memory. It’s also a good excuse to spoil your best friends with what they love most–generally spending time with you!
Life can be crazy busy. Sometimes we have the best intentions, but life gets in the way and we don’t get to spend as much quality time together with our pets as we and our pets would like. Plan time on Valentine’s Day just for you and your beloved pets.
Whether your family includes furry, feathered or scaled loved ones, there are activities you can do together to celebrate Valentine’s Day with love.
Set Aside Time for Just You and Your Pet
Play chase with your ferret. Take your dog for a walk on her favorite trail. Give your cat a nice ear scratch. Cuddle with your bunny or play your bird’s favorite music. No matter what you do on Valentine’s Day, the most important part is just being with your beloved pet friends.
Valentine’s Day is all about celebrating love. No one loves you more unconditionally than your pets. Tap into your creative side and find ways to show your pets just how much you love them this Valentine’s Day.
5 Ways to Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Pets
#1 Commission a Professional Portrait
This doesn’t have to cost as much as you may think. There are many students and freelancers that are just getting started or are looking for clients that are willing to provide their talents for a reasonable fee. Each artist has his or her preferred medium or specialty. Prices may vary depending on the medium, size and complexity of the portrait. Also, live sittings are typically much more expensive than portraits from photos.
Other things to consider are composition. Do you want a portrait of you and your ferret with a garden background? Or your bird hanging upside down in his cage? Or do you just want a portrait of your bunny with a plain background? These differences can substantially change the commission you will be charged.
I commissioned a portrait of my three ferrets from a local artist a few years ago. I had it done from photos in pastel with a plain background. It was 16″ x 20″ and cost less than $150 (unframed). But that was a few years ago!
#2 Have a “Professional” Photo Shoot
This doesn’t have to be done by a professional. It can be fun to just set it up with a friend or family member. You can even do it with your phone’s camera. You can be creative with poses, settings and backdrops. You can use costumes too, but this is just for your benefit, not your pets.
You can try to get all your pets together with you for a few shots, try a few with you and one pet, and each of your pets alone.
If your pet will stay still and pose for the camera, great! If not, you may need a bit of patience and some trial and error to get some good shots.
I had a toy poodle, Truffles, who would always pose for the camera. He was very photogenic. I now have a Foxhuaua (fox terrier-chihuahua), who will generally stay relatively still but always has her ears back and a worried look on her face for photos! That’s part of her charm, so I go with it.
#3 Make Valentine’s Day Treats
I’m sure your pets have favorite treats. Your cat may love tuna, your turtle may love fruit, your dog may love peanut butter and your ferret may love chicken. Instead of making Valentine’s Day cupcakes for your office, how about treating your pets?
My ferrets love when I make them these kinds of treats. One of my ferrets, Panda, couldn’t wait for her treat and would try to crawl up my pant leg while I was preparing it.
#4 Have an Adventure
Does your pet like to explore? Many dogs love to have adventures on far-off trails. But it may not be practical to go outdoors with your pet. Not to worry, you can still have an adventure inside.
Would your iguana like to explore a new “jungle”? You could make one for him in a large box with live or artificial plants. Would your hamster enjoy burrowing in a new environment? You could get a few small boxes, cut doorways in them, shred some newspaper and put the boxes and newspaper all in a larger box to make a new place to explore.
#5 Find a New Game
Most pets love toys and games. You could get a typical red squeaky heart or a pink catnip mouse for your pet. But wouldn’t it be more fun to get a more interactive toy or create a game that you and your pet can enjoy together?
What about teaching your dog to catch a frisbee? Or teaching your bird to solve a block puzzle?
How about getting a peek-a-boo tunnel mat for your cat or ferret and have fun making up different configurations?
What you do with your beloved pets is not as important as the simple fact that you spend quality time together.
Relax. Have Fun.
How do you plan to spend Valentine’s Day with your pets?