Cats

A Full List of Pet Holidays Throughout the Year


Pet holidays remind us of how much our pets mean to us. Photo: Stewart Black

Some holidays are easy to remember.

Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas, for example, are holidays that we have no trouble remembering.

But there’s a whole slew of holidays that pass quietly every year, save a social media post or two. These holidays are special because they allow us to celebrate our furry, scaly or feathery best friends.

In fact, there are so many holidays that it’s impossible to keep track of them all — until now.

We’ve put together the ultimate list of all annual pet-related holidays, fully updated for 2021.

Take a look at the dates below and see what you’ve been missing!

January 2021 Pet Holidays

January has a mixture of the serious and the fun for holidays. This is when we’re reminded to unchain and train our dogs, keep our pets safe when traveling and, most important, answer our cats’ burning questions.

All Month Long:

  • Adopt a Rescued Bird Month
  • National Train Your Dog Month
  • Unchain a Dog Month
  • Walk Your Pet Month

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Jan. 1: New Year’s Day
  • Jan. 2: National Pet Travel Safety Day
  • Jan. 2: Happy Mew Year for Cats Day
  • Jan. 5: National Bird Day
  • Jan. 14: National Dress Up Your Pet Day
  • Jan. 18: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Jan. 20: Penguin Awareness Day
  • Jan. 21: Squirrel Appreciation Day
  • Jan. 22: National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day
  • Jan. 24: Change a Pet’s Life Day
  • Jan. 25: National Fun At Work Day
  • Jan. 29: Seeing-Eye Guide Dog Anniversary
Black cats in particular enjoy several holidays throughout the year. Photo: Mark Richards

February 2021 Pet Holidays

February focuses on responsible pet care, pet health and the all-important task of spaying/neutering our pets. This month also includes Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day, which, as a dog walker, I will certainly be celebrating.

All Month Long:

  • Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month
  • Dog Training Education Month
  • International Hoof Care Month
  • National Cat Health Month
  • National Prevent a Litter Month
  • Responsible Pet Owners Month
  • Pet Dental Health Month
  • Spay/Neuter Awareness Month (“Beat the Heat” month)

Weeklong Events:

  • Feb. 7–14: Have a Heart for Chained Dogs Week
  • Feb. 15–16: Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
  • Feb. 21–28: National Justice for Animals Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Feb. 2: Groundhog Day; Hedgehog Day
  • Feb. 3: National Golden Retriever Day
  • Feb. 3: Annual Doggy Date Night
  • Feb. 7: Super Bowl
  • Feb. 14: Valentine’s Day
  • Feb. 14: Pet Theft Awareness Day
  • Feb. 15: Presidents Day
  • Feb. 16: Mardi Gras
  • Feb. 19: International Tug-of-War Day
  • Feb. 20: Love Your Pet Day
  • Feb. 22: National Walk Your Dog Day
  • Feb. 23: International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day
  • Feb. 23: World Spay Day
  • Feb. 27: Polar Bear Day

March 2021 Pet Holidays

March includes holidays that recognize a couple of nontraditional pets, salute our K-9 military veterans, and acknowledge a group of people who make life better for both pets and their people — pet sitters.

All Month Long:

  • Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig Month
  • Poison Prevention Awareness Month

Weeklong Events:

  • March 7–13: Professional Pet Sitters Week
  • March 21–27: National Poison Prevention Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • March 1: National Pig Day
  • March 1: National Horse Protection Day
  • March 3: If Pets Had Thumbs Day
  • March 6: Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Begins
  • March 8: International Women’s Day
  • March 13: K-9 Veterans Day
  • March 14: Daylight Saving Time Begins
  • March 14: Learn About Butterflies Day
  • March 14: National Save a Spider Day
  • March 17: St. Patrick’s Day
  • March 17: St. Gertrude of Nivelles Day (“The Cat Lady of the Catholic Church”)
  • March 20: World Sparrow Day
  • March 23: National Puppy Day
  • March 23: Cuddly Kitten Day
  • March 27: Passover Begins
  • March 28: Respect Your Cat Day
  • March 30: Take a Walk in the Park Day

April 2021 Pet Holidays

April focuses on some important aspects of pet care: heartworm prevention, pet first aid, Lyme disease and preventing cruelty. In this month, we also have a shoutout to Greyhounds, frogs and the pooper scooper.

All Month Long:

  • Canine Fitness Month (Active Dog Month)
  • National Adopt a Greyhound Month
  • National Frog Month
  • National Heartworm Awareness Month
  • National Pet First Aid Awareness Month
  • National Pet Month (UK)
  • Prevent Lyme Disease in Dogs Month
  • Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month

Weeklong Events:

  • April 1–7: International Pooper Scooper Week
  • April 1–7: National Raw Feeding Week
  • April 11–17: National Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week
  • April 11–17: National Dog Bite Prevention Week
  • April 17–24: National Pet ID Week
  • April 18–24: Animal Cruelty/Human Violence Awareness Week
  • April 23–29: National Scoop the Poop Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • April 1: April Fool’s Day
  • April 2: National Ferret Day
  • April 3: Every Day Is Tag Day
  • April 4: Easter
  • April 4: World Rat Day
  • April 6: National Siamese Cat Day
  • April 8: National Dog Fighting Awareness Day
  • April 10: National Hug Your Dog Day
  • April 10: National Siblings Day
  • April 11: National Pet Day
  • April 11: Celebrate Shelter Pets Day
  • April 11: Dog Therapy Appreciation Day
  • April 12: World Hamster Day
  • April 15: Tax Day
  • April 18: Pet Owners Independence Day
  • April 19: National Cat Lady Day
  • April 21: Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day
  • April 22: Earth Day
  • April 23: National Lost Dog Awareness Day
  • April 24: World Veterinary Day
  • April 25: National Pet Parents Day
  • April 25: World Penguin Day
  • April 26: National Kids and Pets Day
  • April 27: National Little Pampered Dog Day
  • April 28: International Guide Dog Day
  • April 30: National Tabby Day
  • April 30: Adopt a Shelter Pet Day
  • April 30: National Therapy Animal Day
  • April 30: Hairball Awareness Day
Keep your pets safe and secure on July Fourth. Photo: Don Graham

May 2021 Pet Holidays

May brings us the reminder to microchip our pets, as well as days to celebrate both mixed-breed and purebred dogs, a celebration of the specially abled pets and a nod to Chihuahuas — who absolutely deserve their own day.

All Month Long:

  • Chip Your Pet Month
  • Lyme Disease Prevention Month
  • National Foster Care Month
  • National Pet Month
  • National Service Dog Eye Examination Month
  • Pet Cancer Awareness Month
  • Pet Sitter Safety Month
  • Responsible Animal Guardian Month

Weeklong Events:

  • May 2–8: Be Kind to Animals Week
  • May 2–8: Dog Anxiety Awareness Week
  • May 2–8: National Pet Week
  • May 3–9: Puppy Mill Action Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • May 1: National Purebred Dog Day
  • May 2: Mayday for Mutts
  • May 3: National Specially-abled Pets Day
  • May 5: Cinco de Mayo (or perhaps Cinco de Meowo?)
  • May 8: Vet Nurse Day
  • May 8: National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day
  • May 8: National Dog Mom’s Day
  • May 9: Mother’s Day
  • May 14: International Chihuahua Appreciation Day
  • May 20: National Rescue Dog Day
  • May 23: World Turtle Day
  • May 31: Memorial Day

June 2021 Pet Holidays

In June, we see a real focus on cat adoption because this is the time of year that shelters get lots of newborn kittens. June also reminds us to have a plan in place for our pets should a disaster strike, and that cats may indeed one day take over the world.

All Month Long:

Weeklong Events:

  • June 6–12: Pet Appreciation Week
  • June 13–19: Animal Rights Awareness Week
  • June 21–25: Take Your Pet to Work Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • June 4: Hug Your Cat Day
  • June 8: Best Friends Day
  • June 8: World Pet Memorial Day
  • June 14: Flag Day
  • June 15: National Lobster Day
  • June 19: Juneteenth
  • June 19: National Garfield the Cat Day
  • June 20: Father’s Day
  • June 21: National Dog Party Day
  • June 21: Take Your Cat to Work Day
  • June 24: Cat World Domination Day
  • June 25: Take Your Dog to Work Day

July 2021 Pet Holidays

In July, we look at ways to keep our pets cool by repairing dog houses and outdoor shelters, keeping our pets properly hydrated and preparing for the barrage of fireworks accompanying Independence Day.

All Month Long:

  • Dog House Repair Month
  • National Lost Pet Prevention Month
  • National Pet Hydration Awareness Month

Weeklong Events:

  • July 15–18: Crufts Dog Show (UK)

Special Days/Holidays:

  • July 1: ID Your Pet Day
  • July 4: Independence Day
  • July 5: Pet Remembrance Day
  • July 6: International Kissing Day
  • July 9: Cow Appreciation Day
  • July 11: All-American Pet Photo Day
  • July 15: I Love Horses Day
  • July 15: National Pet Fire Safety Day
  • July 16: World Snake Day
  • July 16: Guinea Pig Appreciation Day
  • July 21: National Craft for Your Local Shelters Day
  • July 21: No Pet Store Puppies Day
  • July 25: National Parents Day
  • July 26: National Dog Photography Day
  • July 30: International Friendship Day
  • July 31: National Mutt Day

For helpful tips on keeping your pets happy and healthy during the year-end holidays, watch this:

August 2021 Pet Holidays

August brings us the dog days of summer with — what else? — National Dog Day. We also see a reminder to check and update our pets’ microchipping information as well as an appreciation for the neglected black cats of the world and a day to remember those pets who have left our sides forever.

All Month Long:

  • National Immunization Awareness Month
  • National Wellness Month
  • Rawgust (celebrating raw feeding for pets)

Weeklong Events:

  • Aug. 2–8: International Assistance Dog Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Aug. 1: DOGust Universal Birthday for Shelter Dogs
  • Aug. 4: Assistance Dog Day
  • Aug. 5: Work Like a Dog Day
  • Aug. 6: Fresh Breath Day
  • Aug. 8: International Cat Day
  • Aug. 10: National Lazy Day
  • Aug. 10: Spoil Your Dog Day
  • Aug. 14: World Lizard Day
  • Aug. 15: National Check the Chip Day
  • Aug. 16: St. Roch’s Day (a patron saint of dogs)
  • Aug. 17: National Black Cat Appreciation Day*
  • Aug. 21: International Homeless Animals Day
  • Aug. 22: National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day
  • Aug. 26: National Dog Day
  • Aug. 28: Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day
  • Aug. 30: National Holistic Pet Day

September 2021 Pet Holidays

In September, we see some less-considered topics, such as birth defects and chronic pain in pets. We also have the opportunity to celebrate all the presidential pets with Checkers Day and are reminded that pet insurance is well worth the cost.

All Month Long:

  • Animal Pain Awareness Month
  • Happy Cat Month
  • National Disaster Preparedness Month
  • National Pet Insurance Month
  • National Service Dog Month
  • Pet Sitter Education Month
  • Responsible Dog Ownership Month

Weeklong Events:

  • Sept. 12–18: Adopt a Less-Adoptable Pet Week
  • Sept. 19–25: National Dog Week
  • Sept. 19–25: Deaf Pet Awareness Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Sept. 1: Ginger Cat Appreciation Day
  • Sept. 6: Labor Day
  • Sept. 6: Rosh Hashanah Begins
  • Sept. 8: National Dog Walker Appreciation Day
  • Sept. 11: Patriot Day
  • Sept. 11: National Iguana Awareness Day
  • Sept. 12: National Pet Memorial Day
  • Sept. 12: National Hug Your Hound Day
  • Sept. 12: Grandparent’s Day
  • Sept. 13: Pet Birth Defect Awareness Day
  • Sept. 15: Yom Kippur Begins
  • Sept. 17: National Pet Bird Day
  • Sept. 18: Puppy Mill Awareness Day
  • Sept. 18: AKC Responsible Dog Ownership Day
  • Sept. 19: National Meow Like a Pirate Day
  • Sept. 23: Dogs in Politics Day (Checkers Day)
  • Sept. 25: International Rabbit Day
  • Sept. 25: World’s Largest Pet Walk
  • Sept. 23: Remember Me Thursday
  • Sept. 28: World Rabies Day

October 2021 Pet Holidays

There’s a lot to talk about in October, such as remembering our hardworking vet techs, recognizing the dangers of pet obesity and educating ourselves on pit bulls. Halloween also falls in October, so we need to be vigilant to keep chocolate out of our pets’ paws.

All Month Long:

Weeklong Events:

  • Oct. 1–7: National Walk Your Dog Week; Animal Welfare Week
  • Oct. 3–9: Animal Welfare Week
  • Oct. 17–23: National Veterinary Technician Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Oct. 1: National Fire Pup Day
  • Oct. 1: National Black Dog Day
  • Oct. 1: International Raccoon Appreciation Day
  • Oct. 4: World Animal Day
  • Oct. 4: World Pets Day
  • Oct. 11: Columbus Day/Indigenous Peoples’ Day
  • Oct. 13: Pet Obesity Awareness Day
  • Oct. 16: National Feral Cat Day
  • Oct. 17: National Fetch Day
  • Oct. 21: National Pets for Veterans Day
  • Oct. 21: Reptile Awareness Day
  • Oct. 27: National Black Cat Day (UK)*
  • Oct. 28: Plush Animal Lovers’ Day (perfect day to buy your pet a new squeaky toy)
  • Oct. 29: National Cat Day
  • Oct. 30: National Pit Bull Awareness Day
  • Oct. 31: Halloween
Year-end holidays are fun, but remember to keep your pets away from potential choking hazards like ribbon and wrapping paper. Photo: frankieleon

November 2021 Pet Holidays

In the United States, we celebrate Thanksgiving in November. We are also reminded that some of the best pets are seniors and that we need to show some love to animal shelter workers.

All Month Long:

  • Adopt a Senior Pet Month
  • National Pet Awareness Month
  • National Senior Pet Month
  • Pet Cancer Awareness Month (AVMA)
  • Pet Diabetes Month

Weeklong Events:

  • Nov. 7–13: National Animal Shelter and Rescue Appreciation Week

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Nov. 1: National Cook for Your Pets Day
  • Nov. 4: Chicken Lady Day
  • Nov. 7: National Canine Lymphoma Awareness Day
  • Nov. 7: Daylight Savings Time Ends
  • Nov. 11: Veterans Day
  • Nov. 12: Fancy Rat and Mouse Day
  • Nov. 17: Take a Hike Day
  • Nov. 17: National Black Cat Day*
  • Nov. 20: National Adoption Day
  • Nov. 25: Thanksgiving (U.S.)
  • Nov. 25: National Dog Show Broadcast (Kennel Club of Philadelphia)
  • Nov. 28: Hanukkah Begins
  • Nov. 30: Giving Tuesday

December 2021 Pet Holidays

There are many holidays in December for humans, but not so much for the pets. Of course, our pets are just as spoiled as we are when it comes to those Hanukkah or Christmas gifts.

All Month Long:

  • National Cat Lovers’ Month
  • Safe Toys and Gifts Month

Special Days/Holidays:

  • Dec. 2: National Mutt Day (again)
  • Dec. 5: International Volunteer Day
  • Dec. 9: International Day of Veterinary Medicine
  • Dec. 13: National Horse Day
  • Dec. 15: National Cat Herder’s Day
  • Dec. 15: Monkey Day
  • Dec. 17: Underdog Day
  • Dec. 24: Christmas Eve
  • Dec. 25: Christmas
  • Dec. 26: Kwanzaa Begins
  • Dec. 31: New Year’s Eve

*Black cats seem to be wildly celebrated, as variations of black cat holidays are listed on different calendars throughout the year. We think black cats are pretty awesome, so go ahead and celebrate them on whichever day you see fit — or all of them!





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