Valentine’s Day is traditionally celebrated by romantic couples, but we say it’s time to claim the day for the true loves of our lives: our dogs. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up nine doggy date ideas to help you celebrate the bond between you and your four-legged best friend.
Take a romantic walk
First of all, long walks on the beach are classic date fodder. If you don’t have a beach handy, why not a hike, or a simple stroll around the neighborhood? You can amp up the Valentine’s Day vibe with your favorite sentimental dog t-shirt.
Dine al fresco (or al auto)
This February 14th, take your dog out for a night on the town at your favorite dog-friendly restaurant patio. If you live in a wintry climate, hit the local dog-friendly drive-through to get a value meal for yourself and a dog treat for your dog. You can even sneak her a french fry or two—we won’t tell.
Coffee and a treat
Treat your four-legged valentine to a sweet treat at your local dog bakery, or pack up some homemade snacks, and hit a coffee shop patio. You can sip a latte while your beloved gnaws a bully stick, and simply enjoy each other’s company.
Netflix and snuggle
Get out your softest blanket, prepare some dog-friendly snacks, and cuddle up on the couch with one of these classic films about the human-dog bond:
- 101 Dalmatians
- Best in Show
- Marley & Me
- My Dog Skip
- Turner & Hooch
Note: some of these movies are tearjerkers, so proceed with caution! You can always marathon your favorite TV show instead. The important thing is to have your pup by your side.
Valentine’s Day shopping spree
Take your dog on a shopping spree and treat them to a super-comfy bed, special dog toy, or gourmet treats. You can also pick up something for yourself: many outdoor shopping centers are animal-friendly, and some indoor malls allow dogs, too. Even if it’s just to your usual pet supply store, you can let your Valentine pick their own present.
Doga date (that’s yoga + dogs)
Do a web search for “dog yoga + [your town],” and you’ll probably come up with a class you can take! Doga typically combines traditional yoga poses for humans, and gentle stretches for your dog. According to yogini Madhavi Bhatia, interviewed in Bark Magazine, doga “create(s) a harmony and synchronization of energy flow between the owner and dog.” Seems like a perfect Valentine’s Day vibe to us!
Lavish your dog with gifts
Jewelry is a classic Valentine’s Day gift, so if you have the money and inclination, treat your dog to a sparkly gift. For example, this rhinestone collar ($8.99-$10.99) really brings the bling.
For more budget-friendly gifts, consider a homemade toy or treat. Because your dog doesn’t know the difference between a diamond-encrusted collar and a handmade bandanna, you can save money and infuse your handmade gifts with love.
Train them to say “I love you”
Perhaps it’s better to give than to receive, but let’s be honest: sometimes, we wish our dogs could say “I love you” back. This tutorial offers advice on how to help your dog vocalize on command. But if your dog doesn’t manage to say words, don’t worry: they do love you, they just show it in dog language.
K.I.S.S. (Keep it simple, silly!)
It’s cheesy but true: every day is Valentine’s Day with the one you love. You don’t have to break the bank to show your dog you love them. Whether you take the morning off to go for a long walk, spend the evening cuddling on the couch, or prepare a special meal, the most important thing on Valentine’s Day is to spend quality time with the one you love. And maybe let them lick you on the face just this once.
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