A Full List of Pet Holidays Throughout the Year

You can celebrate your pets — and those who work with pets — from January to December. This list of pet holidays is fully updated for 2020.

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 2020.

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

January 2020 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.

  • Walk Your Pet Month
  • Unchain a Dog Month
  • National Train Your Dog Month
  • Adopt a Rescued Bird Month
  • Jan. 2: National Pet Travel Safety Day; Happy Mew Year for Cats Day
  • Jan. 5: National Bird Day
  • Jan. 14: National Dress Up Your Pet Day
  • Jan. 21: Squirrel Appreciation Day
  • Jan. 22: National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day
  • Jan. 24: Change a Pet’s Life Day
  • Jan. 29: Seeing-Eye Guide Dog Birthday
Black cats in particular enjoy several holidays throughout the year. Photo: Mark Richards

February 2020 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.

  • Pet Dental Health Month
  • Dog Training Education Month
  • National Cat Health Month
  • Responsible Pet Owners Month
  • National Prevent a Litter Month
  • Spay/Neuter Awareness Month (“Beat the Heat” month)
  • Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month
  • Feb. 2: Hedgehog Day (and Groundhog Day)
  • Feb. 7–14: Have a Heart for Chained Dogs Week
  • Feb. 11–12: Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
  • Feb. 14: Pet Theft Awareness Day
  • Feb. 20: Love Your Pet Day
  • Feb. 22: National Walk Your Dog Day
  • Feb. 23: International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day
  • Feb. 23–29: National Justice for Animals Week
  • Feb. 25: Spay Day USA/World Spay Day

March 2020 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.

  • Poison Prevention Awareness Month
  • Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig Month
  • March 1: National Pig Day
  • March 3: If Pets Had Thumbs Day
  • March 5–8: Crufts Dog Show
  • March 9–13: Professional Pet Sitters Week
  • March 13: K-9 Veterans Day
  • March 14: National Spider Day
  • March 16–22: National Poison Prevention Week
  • March 23: National Puppy Day; Cuddly Kitten Day
  • March 28: Respect Your Cat Day
  • March 30: Take a Walk in the Park Day

April 2020 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.

  • Heartworm Awareness Month
  • National Adopt a Greyhound Month
  • National Pet First Aid Awareness Month
  • Prevent Lyme Disease in Dogs Month
  • Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month
  • National Frog Month
  • National Pet Month (UK)
  • April 1–7: International Pooper Scooper Week; National Raw Feeding Week
  • April 2: Ferret Day
  • April 4: Every Day Is Tag Day
  • April 6: National Siamese Cat Day
  • April 6–10: National Animal Control Officer Appreciation Week; National Dog Bite Prevention Week
  • April 8: National Dog Fighting Awareness Day
  • April 10: National Hug Your Dog Day
  • April 11: National Pet Day; Dog Therapy Appreciation Day
  • April 17–23: National Pet ID Week; Animal Cruelty/Human Violence Awareness Week
  • April 18: Pet Owners Independence Day
  • April 21: Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day
  • April 22: Earth Day
  • April 23: National Lost Dog Awareness Day
  • April 25: International Guide Dog Day
  • April 26: National Kids and Pets Day; Hairball Awareness Day
  • April 27: World Veterinary Day
  • April 28: National Pet Parents Day
  • April 30: National Tabby Day; Adopt a Shelter Pet Day; National Therapy Animal Day
Keep your pets safe and secure on July Fourth. Photo: Don Graham

May 2020 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.

  • Chip Your Pet Month
  • Pet Cancer Awareness Month (AKC)
  • National Pet Month (U.S.)
  • Responsible Animal Guardian Month
  • National Service Dog Eye Examination Month
  • Responsible Animal Guardian Month
  • Lyme Disease Prevention Month
  • May 1: National Purebred Dog Day
  • May 3: Mayday for Mutts
  • May 3: National Specially-abled Pets Day
  • May 3–9: National Pet Week; Be Kind to Animals Week
  • May 4–10: Puppy Mill Action Week
  • May 10: National Hamster Day
  • May 11: National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day
  • May 14: International Chihuahua Appreciation Day
  • May 23: World Turtle Day
  • May 30: International Hug Your Cat Day

June 2020 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.

  • Adopt-A-Cat Month (AH)
  • Adopt a Shelter Cat Month (ASPCA)
  • National Pet Preparedness Month
  • National Microchipping Month
  • June 1–7: Pet Appreciation Week
  • June 4: Hug Your Cat Day
  • June 8: National Best Friends Day
  • June 9: World Pet Memorial Day
  • June 17: Take Your Cat to Work Day
  • June 19: National Garfield the Cat Day
  • June 19–25: Animal Rights Awareness Week
  • June 21: Dog Party Day
  • June 22–28: Take Your Pet to Work Week
  • June 24: Cat World Domination Day
  • June 26: Take Your Dog to Work Day

July 2020 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.

  • Dog House Repair Month
  • National Lost Pet Prevention Month
  • National Pet Hydration Awareness Month
  • July 1: ID Your Pet Day
  • July 4: Independence Day
  • July 5: Pet Remembrance Day
  • July 11: All-American Pet Photo Day
  • July 15: National Pet Fire Safety Day
  • July 16: World Snake Day; Guinea Pig Appreciation Day
  • July 21: National Craft for Your Local Shelters Day; No Pet Store Puppies Day
  • July 31: National Mutt Day

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

August 2020 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.

  • National Immunization Awareness Month
  • Aug. 1: DOGust Universal Birthday for Shelter Dogs
  • Aug. 2–8: International Assistance Dog Week
  • Aug. 5: Work Like a Dog Day
  • Aug. 8: International Cat Day
  • Aug. 10: Spoil Your Dog Day
  • Aug. 15: National Check the Chip Day
  • Aug. 17: International Homeless Animals Day; National Black Cat Appreciation 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 2020 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.

  • Happy Healthy Cat Month
  • Guide/Service Dogs Month
  • National Pet Insurance Month
  • Animal Pain Awareness Month
  • Responsible Dog Ownership Month
  • Pet Sitter Education Month
  • Sept. 1: Ginger Cat Appreciation Day
  • Sept. 13: National Pet Memorial Day; National Hug Your Hound Day; Pet Birth Defect Awareness Day
  • Sept. 19: Puppy Mill Awareness Day; Responsible Dog Ownership Day
  • Sept. 20–26: National Dog Week; Deaf Pet Awareness Week
  • Sept. 21–27: Adopt a Less-Adoptable Pet Week
  • Sept. 23: Dogs in Politics Day (Checkers Day)
  • Sept. 24: Remember Me Thursday
  • Sept. 28: World Rabies Day; World’s Largest Pet Walk

October 2020 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.

  • National Animal Safety and Protection Month
  • Adopt a Dog Month (AH)
  • Adopt a Shelter Dog Month (ASPCA)
  • National Pet Wellness Month
  • National Pit Bull Awareness Month
  • Oct. 1: National Fire Pup Day; National Black Dog Day; International Raccoon Appreciation Day
  • Oct. 1–6: National Walk Your Dog Week; Animal Welfare Week
  • Oct. 4: World Animal Day; World Pets Day
  • Oct. 9: Pet Obesity Awareness Day
  • Oct. 16: National Feral Cat Day
  • Oct. 19–23: Veterinary Technician Week
  • Oct. 21: Reptile Awareness Day
  • Oct. 26: National Pit Bull Awareness Day
  • Oct. 27: National Black Cat Day (U.K.)*
  • Oct. 28: Plush Animal Lovers’ Day (perfect day to buy your pet a new squeaky toy)
  • Oct. 29: National Cat Day (U.S.)
  • 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 2020 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.

  • Pet Diabetes Month
  • National Senior Pet Month
  • Adopt a Senior Pet Month
  • Pet Cancer Awareness Month (AVMA)
  • Nov. 1: National Cook for Your Pets Day
  • Nov. 2–6: National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week
  • Nov. 7: National Canine Lymphoma Awareness Day
  • Nov. 12: Fancy Rat and Mouse Day
  • Nov. 17: National Take a Hike Day; National Black Cat Day*
  • Nov. 26: Thanksgiving (U.S.); National Dog Show Broadcast (Kennel Club of Philadelphia)

December 2020 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.

  • National Cat Lovers’ Month
  • Dec. 2: National Mutt Day (again)
  • Dec. 10–18: Hanukkah
  • Dec. 13: National Horse Day
  • Dec. 15: National Cat Herder’s Day
  • Dec. 25: Christmas
  • Dec. 26: Kwanzaa
  • 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!