Being alone doesn't mean you have to be lonely
If you're looking at the calendar, you'll notice that in a couple of days it's February 14th. For lots of people Valentine's Day is a day of romance and passion and an opportunity to show that special someone that you truly love them. A nice dinner, an expensive gift and some flowers are fairly common.
For those of us who are single, Valentine's Day can be a stupid holiday made up by the greeting card companies so that they can make money or you can choose to have a fun day with the help of your canine best friend.
Here's a few ideas to have fun with your dog on Valentine's Day.
Bake some cookies
Show your dog you love them by baking them some cookies. It's much easier than you think and you can even buy a little heart shaped cookie cutter to keep with the Valentine's Day theme. If you're looking for dog cookie recipes, there are and endless amount to choose from online.
Here's a great recipe for Nutty Bacon Dog Treats from Dog Hill Kitchen:
image from doghillkitchen.blogspot.ca
Nutty Bacon Dog Treats
Makes ~6 dozen 1" diameter treats
3 slices of bacon, diced
1/3 cup creamy natural peanut butter (or Sunbutter)
1 tablespoon maple syrup (bacon + maple seemed like a good idea)
3 tablespoons water
1/2 cup soy flour
1/2 whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
-Preheat oven to 300 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
-Fry the diced bacon until crispy. With a slotted spoon, remove the crispy bacon but save the fat. Allow the fat to cool slightly (2-5 minutes)
-Add the egg, peanut butter, maple syrup and water to the bacon fat and mix thoroughly.
-Add in the flours and wheat germ and mix until combined. Stir in the crispy bacon pieces.
-Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1/4" thick. Cut into desired shapes. I used three different 1" cookie cutters.
-Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes (for 1" diameter shapes) until lightly browned.
Watch a movie
Maybe you want to keep things a little more low-key on Valentine's Day. If your idea of a great afternoon is to snuggle up and watch a movie, there's lots of great choices for you and your pooch. Here's a list of 25 Great Dog Movies put together by screenrant.com.
image from screenrant.com
My personal favourites are Beethoven (seen above), Eight Below and of course Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey.
Dog movies are a great way to make you laugh, then cry and remind you what a dog dork you really are.
Go for a walk
Going for a walk can be a fun way to spend time with your dog on Valentine's Day. Not just any walk will do however, this is a special day after all. Look locally and find a great dog park, forest or hiking trail to take your dog for a nice, long walk. You'll both enjoy your time together and you'll be really happy you got outside and got some exercise.
Here's a list of my favourite dog parks around where I live, but if you ask around and do a bit of research yourself, you'll find you have lots of options close to where you are too.
image from baggybulldogs.wordpress.com
Pamper your pooch
Your dog works hard to sleep on the couch and love you unconditionally. They deserve a day to be pampered and loved, don't they?
There's lots of ways that you can pamper your dog on Valentine's Day. You can take them for a bath (if they like that), trim their nails or you can give them a massage.
image from dakpets.com
Modern Dog Magazine has made a great guide for various massage techniques. These techniques can obviously be used any time of year, but on the day of love it makes sense you'd show your dog a little bit of extra affection.
Get drunk and cry
Maybe you're after a more traditional Valentine's Day for singles. If you're in the mood to sit at home, drink a bottle of wine and cry about how lonely you are, your dog can join you too!
Let's be clear, your dog shouldn't drink alcohol as it's really bad for them. The idea might seem funny, but it could be deadly - and that's not funny at all. But if you're like me and like to indulge in the casual drink here and there, there are at least a couple of beers made especially for dogs.
image from hiconsumption.com
Snuffle Dog Beer and Bowser Beer are two dog beer brands that I found. Both are zero alcohol beers, so you don't worry about having a dog that's hungover the next day -- could you imagine? The flavours and ingredients are definitely dog friendly. I don't think I've ever craved a chicken or pork flavoured beer, but who knows? I may have been missing out on something really good.
Whether you're watching a movie, drinking together or just spending some quality time with the most loyal friend you'll ever have, Valentine's Day doesn't have to be just for couples. It can be a day full of fun for dog lovers too!
Happy Valentine's Day!