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PARTY ON PUPS!

A staggering 3/4 of dog owners admit to celebrating their pooch’s birthday

– Study reveals dog owners are throwing fancy paw-ties for their pups and showering them with gifts
– Two thirds of Brits spend more than £10 treating their dog to an extra special day
– Over half treat their canine companion  to a special birthday feast

A new study by Lily’s Kitchen, Creators of proper food for pets/ or who make proper food for pets, found that over half of doting dog owners admits to throwing a birthday bash for their pup, and nearly 60% howl out the iconic ‘Happy Birthday’ musical number (58%) to their dogs on their special day. Pooch parents are happy to splash the cash when birthdays roll around, with almost two thirds (64%) of those surveyed spending more than £10 on gifts and decorations, making sure their hound has the celebration it deserves.

When it comes to the all-important birthday meal, more than half of owners (55%) prepare a special birthday feast for their canine companion, based on their own favourite meal. Meat loaf, fish cakes and chicken stew are just a few homemade doggy dinner favourites.

This increased humanisation of our four-legged friends has led to a growing demand for more occasion- based pet products, including celebratory dog meals and treats made with premium ingredients. Lily’s Kitchen has responded to pet parents wanting to celebrate their dog’s “adopted day” or birthday with the launch of ‘Birthday Surprise’; the first ever party-perfect meal for dogs made from three different fresh cuts of steak, potatoes, broccoli and herbs.

According to the study, spoiling our dogs on their birthday is all part of the deep “emotional connection ” we have with them; 41% of pet owners say they celebrate because “their dog is part of the family” and one in eight people feel that “their dog is like their child”.

Henrietta Morrison, Lily’s Kitchen Founder and CEO said: “Our dogs are family and they deserve to have the best day ever on their birthday. And steak dinners usually mark a special occasion for humans so what better way to celebrate than a nutritious doggy equivalent. The trend that sees us treat our dogs more like the rest of our family can sometimes end up in owners indulging their pets with harmful foods such as cake on their birthday, but we urge all owners to serve up proper food that’s safe and deliciously nourishing”.

Want to throw your pup a party? The new Birthday Surprise gift box RRP £9.95, is available to order from May 5th 2017 and will be sold on the Lily’s Kitchen website www.lilyskitchen.co.uk.

 

 

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Win a copy of Are We Nearly There Yet? By Ben Hatch

To celebrate the release of his new book, Are We Nearly There Yet? Ben Hatch has offered us some tips on travelling with children.

Tip for travelling with kids

1) Always carry treats. Travelling with children minus treats is like walking through a vampire-infested grave-yard after midnight without a wooden stake. You might survive, but why take the chance.

2) Enthuse your kids about where you’re going. Although never oversell the destination as we did visiting the Wensleydale Cheese Visitor Centre. On the strength of a Yorkshire Tourist Board leaflet featuring Wallace and Gromit sticking their thumbs up, we rashly promised life-size models of the cartoon characters wandering around. The only thing Wallace and Gromit related was a chalk outline of them on the café’s specials board. We’d driven two hours to a working cheese factory to show the kids the processes milling and tipping and for them to learn how Wensleydale cheese did in the last Nantwich International Cheese festival.

3)  Not to have a sat-nav today is a bit like being a sailor in the 14th century trying to round the Cape of Good Hope without a nautical chart. It’s insane. Put it this way, if I had a choice – my brakes or the sat-nav? – I’d gladly drill a hole in the driver’s footwell and start using my feet to slow down. Having a sat-nav means brain cells required to remember to turn right or left at particular junctions are more usefully re-directed towards establishing just who in the back was the first to slap the other one round the face with the Corfe Castle activity sheet.

4) Adapt well-known children’s stories into tales involving your children themselves. You can do this by replacing the main character’s name in a classic fairytale with your child’s name so that for us it became, for instance, Phoebe and the Three Bears (‘And then Phoebe tried the medium-sized bowl of porridge…..’) or Hansel and Phoebe (‘And the wicked witch told Phoebe, I will eat your brother be he fat or thin.’). The thrill of an ego-centric toddler hearing themselves thrust into unlikely adventures involving beanstalks, glass slippers and evil witches buys valuable time to continue the argument with your wife about where you went wrong on the A41.

5) In-car Dvd players are a must. They’re available for under £100 but don’t buy the cheapest. We did and it kept disconnecting from the cigarette lighter and returning the film to the beginning. Consequently despite watching Finding Nemo 10 times during our 8,000 mile trip round Britain, our kids are still unaware Nemo was eventually reunited with his father.

6) Colouring-in books and pens provide a welcome distraction. Although be careful – our daughter, protesting about an arduously long drive through the Pennies after a day out at Ostrich World, once employed the toddler equivalent of self-harming with razors. She gothically drew all over her face and arms in black felt tip.

7) Forget I-spy. It’s over in seconds as there’s nothing consistent to see from a speeding car window except the road, others cars and the sky. Instead play I-don’t-Spy, as in ‘I don’t spy with my little eye something beginning with P,’ where the p is then capable of being anything in the known universe unobservable from your car. Our kids once spend two hours guessing the word gnu.

8) Lie about how far it is. As a rule of thumb under 50 miles is “round the corner.” How far dad? “Round the corner.” Over 50 miles then divide how long it will take to get there by 4. Thus an hour becomes 15 minutes. You must divide by 4 again if this stills meets with disappointment. In fact, repeat this division by 4 until your child says, “It’s round the corner.”

9) Finally, if all else fails, and it will, we suggest turning Classic FM to maximum volume and kidding yourself you aren’t muffling the kids’ din with an even louder one, but that you’re actually educating them about Haydn.

10) Good luck.

To have a chance to win a copy of Ben’s book you can enter by emailing your name, address and telephone number to comps@kidaround.biz. Remember to put ‘Nearly Book’ in the subject line to enter into the correct draw.

Closing date Friday 13th April

Posted by Clare Kersey