It seems like every day is dedicated to something new, whether it is National Donut Day or National Cheeseburger Day. Dogs are so special and loved that they do not have one day, but an entire week dedicated to them! National Dog Week is that time of year where dog lovers and owners celebrate everything there is to love about our canine companions.
For one week in September, people focus their energy on raising awareness and spreading information about dog care. Do not worry if you have not heard of national dog week; this guide has you covered! Dig in deeper to learn about this amazing week for dogs, the history behind it, and ways to celebrate!
What is National Dog Week?
National Dog Week is an annual event where dog fanciers celebrate dogs’ roles in people’s lives. They dedicate time to provide the community with dog care information and adoption resources. It is a great opportunity for dog owners to take the time to recognize their time and efforts in helping their pets live healthy and happy lives.
During this celebratory week for dogs, different organizations and groups can host adoption events for sheltered dogs or rescue organizations. Dog admirers and companies in the pet industry host charitable events to help raise funds for non-profit shelters and rescue groups that dedicate their time to help dogs.
Some schools use National Dog Week to teach children about different dog groups and how to properly handle a dog. Animal hospitals also host fundraisers to raise money for research for different diseases prevalent in dogs. Dogs can be celebrated and helped any day of the year, but they get the extra spotlight for one week.
When is National Dog Week?
National Dog Week occurs annually on the last full week of September. Aside from a whole seven days, dogs get an extra day to be the center of celebration on August 26th, also known as International Dog Day.
There are also themes or slogans associated with National Dog week. Some themes have included “Man’s Best Friend” and “A Dog is the Only True Love Money can Buy.”
This week of celebration has been held for almost one hundred years!
National Dog Week History
Dogs have been around for thousands of years. Ancient civilizations depicted dogs in their artwork and literature. Although some ancient dog breeds are no longer around, their descendants provide companionship and assist in different roles.
People celebrate and spoil their dogs in their own way. About 100 years ago, a group of dog enthusiasts came together to start a campaign for National Dog Week.
National Dog Week was first held in 1928 and was kickstarted by Captain William Judy. Judy was a lawyer, scholar, ordained minister, writer, and, more importantly, a dog enthusiast! He used his acquired skills and available resources to raise awareness of the importance of all dog breeds and dog care.
Judy served in World War I, where he achieved the rank of captain and was awarded the Silver Star for his service. During his time there, Judy experienced firsthand the contributions that service dogs provided on the battlefield. There was not much information nor importance placed on dog care and appreciation at the time.
In 1923 when Judy returned, he purchased Dog World Magazine. He served as publisher, editor, and writer for this publication. He used his platform to publish writing on the importance of establishing dog breed standards, caring, and training dogs.
Judy was able to rally up different dog breed groups and organizations to develop the first National Dog Week in 1928. Although the launch was successful, the week-long celebration took more than a decade to gain popularity.
Celebrations Through the Years
The Great Depression began in the late 1920s and lasted throughout the 1930s. These difficult economic times made it tough for families to afford a dog to care for and feed.
Since most Americans did not have the means to invest in training and spoiling dogs, National Dog Week celebrations were stale during these times. Captain Judy continued to publish articles on dogs and never stopped using his platform to spread knowledge. Some of his most known books are The Dog Encyclopedia and Don’t Call a Man a Dog.
It wasn’t until after World War II that people across America began to invest more time and resources into celebrating National Dog Week. People went to dog shows, competitions, and adoption events.
National Dog Week in the Present
Nowadays, it is easy to share photos, videos, and information about our dogs on social media. People can learn about different events hosted by a local shelter or other groups in their area.
Captain William Judy envisioned a world where dogs received the care and recognition they deserved. Thanks to the efforts of Judy and National Dog Week, people are more informed about dogs.
How Do You Celebrate National Dog Week?
There is no wrong way to celebrate National Dog Week, but there are plenty of ways to demonstrate your love and appreciation for dogs. Dogs are not materialistic animals; a good deed of affection means a lot to them.
Here are some ways to celebrate National Dog Week.
Treat Your Dog to Dinner
Everyone enjoys a delicious home-cooked meal during the holidays, so why not make one for your four-legged furry friend? It is recommended to consult with a veterinarian to see which foods are appropriate for your dog based on its current health, age, and size. A professional dog nutritionist can also assist with coming up with balanced home-cooked meals that meet your dog’s nutritional needs.
Dogs can eat cooked meats like beef, poultry, and pork, as long as they are plain and not seasoned. They can also enjoy their protein with a side of vegetables like spinach or broccoli. For dessert, you can give it peanut butter, a handful of berries (raspberries, blackberries, cranberries), or one of the high-end treats from a pet store.
Purchase a New Toy or Dog Accessories
Pet stores are most likely to have sales on dog stuff during National Dog Week. Those sales are a great time to purchase your dog a fancy new toy or new household items.
Here are some popular household items and accessories you can purchase:
- Dog bed
- Ceramic feeding and drinking bowls
- New doghouse or crate
- Anxiety vest
- Dog travel accessories
- Fancy collar
It is a rewarding experience to see your dog get excited when they see a new toy. Make sure to use your dog’s new toy to play with them right away; you can even use it to incentivize learning a new trick!
Visit a Dog Park
You can take your dog on a fun walk or a trip to a dog park. If your dog is socialized and vaccinated, it can freely run around and meet other dogs.
Some organizations also host events at dog parks. If your dog is an athlete, you can also enroll them in dog sporting competitions. If you do not feel like going out, you can have a movie date and watch your favorite dog movies!
Provide Them CBD
Hemp-derived CBD is federally legal as long as it contains less than 0.3% THC. Most CBD dog treats do not contain any trace amounts of THC, so your dog will not feel any intoxicating effects.
Many brands offer these products, but the number one destination for CBD products for dogs is Holistapet. You can find dog treats infused with CBD or purchase CBD oil to add to their food or water.
Give Back to the Dog Community
Whether you are a dog owner or not, there are many ways to participate in National Dog Week by giving back to the dog community. There is an abundance of non-profit organizations, including shelters that rely on community donations. This can be in the form of money or supplies! Often, shelters will have public Amazon wish lists where people can purchase food, beds, blankets, and other essentials.
These groups use the donations to provide shelter dogs with food and care. You can also volunteer at adoption centers to help dogs find a forever home with a loving family. If you are limited you can’t donate your time, consider donating one of the ways mentioned earlier!
Final Thoughts – National Dog Week
National dog week is seven days dedicated to helping bring the spotlight on the affections dogs provide and to help other dogs get adopted into loving new homes. Besides holidays or dog birthdays, this is a great time to spoil your dog. It can be a fancy grooming appointment or brand new dog toys! You will want to mark your calendars so that you don’t forget this special week in September! It is a chance to plan playdates with your friends’ dogs and even give back to your local shelters!