How To Host An Amazing ‘Adopt a Pet’ Party!
We chose an ‘Adopt a Pet’ party theme for Ada’s 4th birthday! The idea is that the children each get to pick a cuddly toy pet to adopt and do a number of themed activities at the party: decorating the house/kennel, making a collar and giving the pet a checkup at the vet hospital. At the end of the party the children get to take their pet home instead of a party bag.
The theme and activities went down really well at Ada’s party, and we had lots of nice feedback from the parents. I can see Ada wanting this theme again! You will find everything you need to know to host an ‘Adopt a Pet’ party below!
There are various digital sets of Adopt a Pet Party signage which you can purchase from Etsy and print at home. I purchased one of these last minute but I did find the image sizing and language used was American so I had to pay to have that amended and it did cost me around £20 all together which is quite expensive. I have since designed my own set which I have put up on an Etsy Shop for anyone interested for £5+VAT! Please feel free to message if you like these but want something changed.
Activities for an Adopt a Pet Party
Adopt a pet
The pets we chose were a selection of puppies and kittens, but you could do this with other animals or mythical creatures! We purchased 8″ Aurora Mini Flopsies from Angel Wholesale. We picked this brand as they are really nice quality and are a good size for the kennel boxes we chose. You can pick any cuddly toys, just make sure they fit in the kennels.
We were worried that there could be arguments over who got which pet so we purchased some spare cuddly toys from Amazon a few days before. Thankfully they were not needed and I was able to return them. Amazon AFF links: Collie dog, Grey cat, Beagle dog, Ginger cat, Golden retriever Also love this unicorn!
Decorate a house for your pet
You will need a cardboard box as the kennel or house for the pet. Ours were purchased from Pretty Little Party Shop. These did the job nicely. I cut a hole in the front of the box myself with a pair of scissors. Bear in mind you want to pick boxes that are robust enough to be decorated without collapsing. You can pick whatever decorating materials you fancy. We used felt tips and paw print, alphabet and gem stickers. We had a different table for each activity station.
Design a collar
We used pastel pipecleaners, pastel beads and black and white alphabet beads from Baker Ross for the collars. (Amazon AFF links) The pipe cleaners are really easy to work with, threading the beads is great for fine motor skills and the alphabet beads were great for learning to spell their pets name with help from parents. The kids really concentrated on this!
Give your pet a checkup
A family member helpfully got the Melissa and Doug Pet Vet Play Set as a birthday present for Ada, and we used this to create a pet hospital table where you can give your pets a check up! We topped up an extra few bits from a doctors kit so we had multiple stethoscopes! I also bought real pet bandages and plasters (love these ones) which they loved putting on the pets!
- Cuddly toys 1 per person, plus some spares (we purchased then returned the spares via Amazon)
- Boxes for kennels/pet house 1 per child, plus some spares
- Crafts for decorating kennel e.g. felt tips, stickers
- Collar crafts: pipe cleaners, beads colourful and alphabet
- 2x bowls for beads, a jar for the pipe cleaners, other bowls for house decorating crafts. You could use cheap plastic pet bowls from the Range/B&M type shops.
- Signage for adopt a pet activity. Find ours or others on Etsy!
- Photo frames to display signage – we had an A4 for the main sign and 4 frames which were 8X8 which we bought here (AFF link)
- Mini clipboards: 1 or 2 for pet certificates to fill in when you select your pet, and 1 or 2 for pet checkup printable at the pet hospital table. Have a couple of pens for both.
- Table cloths for 4 tables: 1 to display pets and kennels, 1 for kennel decoration, 1 for collar decoration and 1 for pet hospital. You will need tables to sit down at for the crafts.
Other party details
We hired a hall (Ashton Vale Community Centre) with a garden, and had a white bouncy castle. I made my own balloon arch and we made our own invitations. We had bubble play and a parachute in the garden. Our food was in lunchboxes which I think worked really well as you can prep everything ahead of time and it does not take as much set up as a buffet.
If we were doing it again I would 100% hire Bunny & Blooms who bring real pets to your party! It is a new Bath based business and would pair SO well with this theme.
We had a joint birthday party with a friend who’s little boy has the same friendship groups as Ada and it worked really well, especially splitting costs!
See the Instagram Reel of the party here which shows the activities in action.
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