Showing your love this Valentine’s Day

Every day is a special day, but there’s one day in particular that is recognised as the day to declare our love, and that’s 14th February… Valentine’s Day! Have you noticed an increase in the adverts on TV promoting Valentine’s Day? When doing your weekly supermarket shop, usual products have mysteriously moved, and in their place are all manner of red heart-shaped items?

So, does the thought of Valentine’s Day light your fire or put it out?

Not everyone will buy into the notion of presenting their loved one with over-priced red roses or expensive handmade chocolates. However, for the romantics among us, Valentine’s Day will always be special and gives us a reason to show how much we care. The good news is that showing your love this Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be expensive. After all it’s not how much money you spend, but the time and love that goes into choosing, or indeed making, a gift.

Not everyone has a human significant-other in their life, you may have a loved one with four legs and a tail, so here are some great cost-saving ideas to surprise your pet and make their day.

How to make sustainable toys and home-baked treats

Tickle their tummy

Cats love to play with paper-based items; perfect for shredding with their claws and inflicting their instinctive ‘bunny kicks’. Why not make them an interactive toy which will keep them amused for hours. Push the boat out and add a few feathers for a more realistic feel. The RSPCA have created a short video and ideas of how to make DIY pet toys from loo rolls, for pets from small furries to large ones. Click here to watch!

Tickle their tastebuds

Nothing lifts the heart more than a wiggling bottom and wagging tail. A sure-fire way of getting this reaction is through biscuits. It’s said, ‘The way to someone’s heart is through their stomach’… it seems pets are no different!

Pets come in all shapes and sizes, and all deserve to be spoilt. Here are some great recipes from the RSPCA of how to make delicious, healthy treats for a variety of pets, large and small, such as:

  • Sushi for guinea pigs
  • Cookies for horses
  • Fishcake treats for cats
  • No-bake biscuits for dogs

As we all know, dogs love biscuits and the Dog’s Trust has a superb recipe for Banana flax biscuits. These maybe bone-shaped but for that extra love in your life, why not use a heart-shaped cutter to add that extra something? Click here for the recipe!

Always check treats are suitable for your pets and ask your vet if you need advice.

Demonstrating our love for our pets is often through giving them something tasty to eat. It’s important to remember that treats can be high in calories, so should be given in moderation, ‘as a treat’. Always check the calorific value on the packet, or if baked by yourself, take note of the quantity of the ingredients, and work out each treat’s calorific value. If giving as a gift, be sure to list the ingredients used, as other pets may have allergies or medical conditions that you don’t know about.

Book a Doggy Date

If baking is not your thing but your fur-baby has a best friend who would appreciate a bit of Valentine’s TLC, why not invite them out on a special doggy-date? There are many Dog Cafés that cater for every doggy’s dream, serving delicious cakes and biscuits designed specifically for dogs using dog-friendly ingredients. These cafés are great fun and perfect for canine socialising, where pet-parents can take a comfy back seat with a flat white in-hand, out of the cold! There are even event companies that have breed-specific pop-up cafés, so you can truly meet like-minded people with the same passion for dogs! Check out these venues hosting events in March ’23.

Cat Cafes

If you are a cat lover but can’t have one of your own, or you just fancy a cat-fix, there are some great Cat Cafés where you can plug in your laptop and enjoy some tea and cake whilst a cat sits on your lap! Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium is extremely popular; it opened in 2013 as London’s first Cat Café but there are many others dotted in locations around the UK.

Final thoughts

Valentine’s Day, love it or hate it, reminds us that love is a powerful emotion, best served in huge quantities to all those special people and fur-balls in our lives. We hope you enjoy showing your love this Valentine’s Day, whether it’s for your significant other, your four-legged friend or for yourself!

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