dog bath

How to Host a Dog Pajama Party

dog bath
Dexter in his jammies

Looking for something fun, unique, and different to do with your dog-loving friends? Ever consider a dog pajama party? This can be a lot of fun, makes for a clever way to host a get together, and is a fun way to spend a summer afternoon. I am also asked how to host a creative fundraiser. A doggie daytime (or early evening) pajama party is a great way to fundraise and have fun doing so. Here is the scoop for sleepover success:

Decide if you are going to have a dog sleepover or an afternoon/evening of pajama party fun. If you are having a sleepover, allow dog parents to engage in some fun, too.
Dexter in his pj’s
BYOB: On the invite, tell guests “BYOB,”  as in bring your own bed. A dog is more apt to sleep when away from home if it has its own bed, blanket or cozy throw. A dog that prefers a kennel should be allowed to sleep in one. Familiarity breeds comfort.

dog sleeping

Social Skills: Sociability is key when bringing a group of dogs together for any reason. Dogs can be territorial, especially when it comes to their sleeping spots. Those that are unfamiliar with each other should be acclimated pre-party to prevent problems.
dog pajamas
Tulane’s Closet makes a cute outfit that also serves as an alternative to the dreaded cone of shame.
Have Rules: Not to be a party pooper, but there have to be basic canine rules in place in order to prevent accidents and keep peace amongst the dogs in attendance. Let sleeping dogs lie, but let the pack play before expecting any catnaps. Rules of a dog park should apply: practice voice control, take caution with toys, be aware of any treats being handed out, and ensure that any children invited are aware of how to approach and behave around guests (of human and dog variety).
dog party
Parties for dogs can be a lot of fun.
CGC: Being a good canine citizen, whether or not your dog has this title, is a good way to determine if your dog will function well in a group situation. Never make a dog do something he is totally unhappy or nervous doing. Here is how I trained my dog, Dexter, to pass the CGC (Canine Good Citizen) test at home.
cute dogs
Dex inviting his friends, Davinia and Indiana, to a pajama party

Pre-Party Fun: When sending invitations, ask dog parents to snap a photo of their own pajamas and bring them to the party. Put all photos on display. The guest who correctly matches the most pictures with their owners wins a prize for his or her dog.

Doggie Digs: When it comes to dog attire, never stress a dog by making it wear clothing if it’s not used to it. Pajamas are one option, but for bigger dogs or hard-to-find sizing, consider a bandana bone-anza: The most creative doggie bandana wins a pooch prize. You can check out a variety of stores online for dog pajamas. Here are a few where we shop:
dog clothes
Even casual cute summer clothes can substitute for pj’s, as Coco and Dex showcase here.
Potty Breaks: Easy access to grass is essential. Plan the pajama party for a room or section of the house where dogs can be taken out quickly and easily. Expect accidents and have a cleaning station, or at the very least, easy clean up supplies ready.
cute dogs
Bowser Boundaries: If you are having a sleepover, ensure there is plenty of space between dogs. Canines can be territorial, especially if disturbed when they are sleeping.
dogs sleep
sleeping dogs
Party Games
Here are some party games you can do indoors or out for some pj- inspired fun:
Dog Limbo
Using a standard agility hurdle, dogs get their Caribbean groove on with this variation of “How low can you go?” fun. Let the music play while dogs walk under the limbo stick, lowering the bar a notch each round. The last dog to successfully go under the limbo stick without knocking it off wins.


Magical Mutt
Have each dog line up for some slight of hand and treat. Place a treat into one closed fist, keeping the other fist empty. Ask each dog, “Which hand?” When your dog touches its nose to the fist that contains the treat, reveal the treat and reward your dog. For a competitive spin, time each dog. The quickest canine is dubbed the winner.Musical Mats
Set up a few mats on the floor, just as you would when playing the human counterpart version. Dogs must go to their mats and sit when the music stops. Before the music starts again, remove one mat. Owners may encourage their dogs, but no pushing or pulling is allowed. The last dog with a mat wins.
cute dog
Scooby Says
Remember the childhood game “Simon Says”? Dogs form a line in front of the “barker.” As commands are given, each dog reacts. Use fun, basic commands like “Sit,” “Down” and “Stay.” The last dog remaining is named the champ.
Dog parties can be a lot of fun.
Using these suggestions, you’ll have a fun, memorable pajama party event.
QUESTION: Have you ever hosted a creative doggie event for fun and/or fundraising? Let us know in the comments below, and even better: Share a dog party photo on our Fidose Facebook page!

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  1. These are such GREAT IDEAS!!! I love that these PJ parties can be used to fundraise for the person’s favorite rescue organization! Very informative article with plenty of great ideas and advise! Thanks Carol!

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