Puppy Dog Themed Birthday Party

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I’m going to have to throw out a major MOM FAIL flag. Sam’s birthday was in November, and I have never posted about it. With his birthday being between Thanksgiving when we’re traveling and Christmas, more travel, it is always a challenge. I royally messed it up this time when I went over to decorate the park for his puppy dog themed party and was shocked to see people already there an hour early. Turns out they were not early. I was off an entire hour! I was scrambling to get everything out of the car and thus didn’t have any time to photograph. What I was able to snap was limited to my phone at the very end. I even thought about not sharing at all because the photos I do have are horrible. But here’s the deal, it’s not perfect and that’s OK (this is mostly me trying to tell myself that). Sam had a great time celebrating with his friends, and that really is all that matters.

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puppy dog birthday party theme

For his 6th Birthday, Sam requested a puppy themed party at the park. This little guy LOVES dogs. He sleeps with what we call his Puppy Pack of no less than 10 stuffed dogs in his bed every night. Sam helped come up with all of the party details and was so excited about all of it.


dog themed birthday party invitation

This year’s invitations were put together by myself using Picmonkey. It’s a great free tool for photo editing, but it’s also amazing for creating your own invitations. I used the graphics they have included on the site so it was really simple. I also created an envelope liner which is a fun way to dress up homemade invitations.

Party Decor

cardboard dog house, dog themed birthday party decor, blue and green balloons

Decorating for a party that’s outdoors can sometimes be tricky. I knew that this area in our park is like a wind tunnel so streamers or banners were out. For decor, I made a dog house out of cardboard and attached some balloons for a fun photo op. These balloons came premixed so I didn’t have to buy a bunch of colors separately. To keep the cardboard dog house from blowing into the lake, I taped it to the deck. Despite my attempts, it still blew over several times, but it didn’t get too far! And then to dress up the park picnic tables, I added my favorite $12 black and white tablecloths. They make everything look better.


dog themed cupcakes, dog paper plates

Sam’s favorite part of the party were these adorable plates. They were the first thing I ordered when he decided on a theme. They are just so darling!

When you have a lot of excited young kids around, I think it’s easier to pass out cupcakes than it is to cut a cake. For these cupcakes I used store bought vanilla cupcakes with plain vanilla frosting. I blended up Oreos and dipped the cupcakes in the crumbs to look like dirt. A bone shaped cracker was added to the top. Quick and easy!

Party Games

Dog Bone Piñata – You can never go wrong with a piñata. Sam always requests one for his birthdays. This year I made him a bone piñata. It’s so cheap to make them yourself! I use a cardboard box, packing tape, party streamers, and glue. You can check out a glimpse of how I make them here.

Balance a Dog Treat – We used these bone shaped graham crackers and had all of the kids stand in a line with a bone balanced on their nose. Whoever lasts the longest wins!

Cat Chase – Hide some stuffed cat animals around and have the “dogs” run around to find them.

Party Favors

puppy dog themed birthday party favors, adopt a puppy, stuffed puppy dogs
dog themed birthday party favors, done bone shaped crackers

Each guest got to adopt a puppy of their choosing and take home a bag of dog treats. You can find the stuffed animals online here. The dog treats are more of these graham crackers. I’m telling ya, those graham crackers were so handy for this party!

Donations in Lieu of Gifts

Does the thought of more toys and stuff entering your home feel overwhelming? Yep. Same here. Birthday parties are an amazing opportunity to teach your children the joy of helping others! This year we talked with Sam about how he and his friends can help kids at our local children’s hospital. The key is to talk about this with your child before hand so they’re on board with the idea and aren’t confused when they don’t get to keep the gifts that show up. Let guests know that you will be accepting donations in lieu of gifts early on, and give them a list of suggestions or guidelines that the organization you will be donating to requires. In our case, I included a print-off from the hospital’s donation website in the invitations. Sam loved it, we loved it, and the guests loved it. A win all around!

Birthday Interview

Every year I have the kids do a birthday interview. It is so fun to look back on how their answers change or stay the same over the years.

  1. Favorite color? Green
  2. Favorite toy? Trains
  3. Favorite fruit? Apples
  4. Favorite TV show? Teen Titans Go, Izzy’s Train Time, and Izzy’s Game Time. He didn’t mention it, but he watched A LOT of Blippi on Youtube
  5. Favorite breakfast? Sandy Eggo’s
  6. Favorite lunch? Chocolate (Nutella) sandwich
  7. Favorite outfit? t-shirt and shorts
  8. Favorite game? Minecraft
  9. Favorite snack? Goldfish crackers
  10. Favorite animal? Dogs
  11. Favorite song? We No Speak Italiano
  12. Favorite book? The Polar Express
  13. Favorite cereal? Cinnamon Toast Crunch
  14. Favorite thing to do outside? Ride my bike and Jeep
  15. Favorite drink? Apple juice
  16. Favorite holiday? Christmas and 4th of July
  17. Favorite thing to take to bed? Snuggle Puppy
  18. Who is your best friend? Elise
  19. What do you want to eat for your birthday dinner? Wendy’s chicken nuggets
  20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Train engineer

Party Sources:

Invitations made by me on Picmonkey

Balloon bundle

Puppy paper plates

Black and white tablecloth

Stuffed puppy dogs

Graham cracker bones

Shop the Party:

More Birthday Inspiration

Click each past party for more birthday inspiration!


  1. Pamela Jones Avatar
    Pamela Jones

    This doggie party was so cute. Simple is the best part. Sam looked like he had an awesome time as usual. Pulled it off pretty well for 0 setup time. 🐶

    1. Shelley Avatar

      He had such a great time! I still can’t believe I had the party time wrong!!

  2. cassie bustamante Avatar

    you win at parties! this is all so adorable!

    1. Shelley Avatar

      He has a couple of more years of parties, but once he passes 10 I’m tossing in the towel 😀

Meet Shelley

Hi, I’m Shelley! My belief is that with a little creativity and elbow grease, you can make your home look like a million bucks without spending it.

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