As a member of the Etsy affiliate program and an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

I’m a big believer in celebrating dog birthdays.

I’m a big believer in celebrating everything, to be honest. I’m a holiday junkie. I love a theme party. And given the chance to celebrate my dogs, my answer is always a resounding, Yes, Please! So dog birthday parties are TOTES a thing at Casa de Kolchak.

There’s a good reason for this. Becoming a dog mom changed my life.

Gone was the carefree, slightly wild, flaky and nomadic girl I was and slowly, a more dependable, responsible and solid person took her place. Before dogs, I didn’t really know what I wanted from life. I tried on too many jobs, wedding planning, marketing, cooking, food service, theatre, film, music, wearing each like a costume that never quite fit right.

Post-Dogs, I settled into a dependable job that let me come home to him at a decent hour which has grown into a career I love. I wanted to party less and explore more. And my dogs led me here to this blog; to what has been unquestioningly the most fulfilling passion project of my life. The fact that it’s grown to become part of how I earn my living is still mind-boggling.

None of that even compares the fact that Kolchak has the most irrepressible spirit and personality I’ve ever encountered – human or canine. He isn’t afraid to ask for what he wants and when he goes after something, he does it with a single-minded determination that I so admire (and often curse). He wears his emotions on his snout, never afraid to be authentically himself. He represents so much of the person I wish to be and I am grateful every single day that the Universe chose me to be his Mom.

This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. We use this money to buy baking and craft supplies and to satisfy Kol’s insatiable appetite for bully sticks and snuggly blankets. We so appreciate your support!

None of the art used in the creation of these free printables is my own. Clip art was purchased from both Pretty Grafik Designs and JessicaSawyerlol  on Etsy. All art is used within the terms of their limited license and remains the property of the respective artist. 

And so, my dog’s birthday is a reason to celebrate.

That’s why this year, we went all out for Kolchak’s birthday. A fancy homemade carob chip cake with a peanut butter icing, a dog birthday hat, a puppy birthday banner and a trip to the park to celebrate with friends. (You’ve never gotten side eye until you’ve gotten “singing happy birthday to your dog while he waits to eat a homemade cake nicer than the one they got their kid at DQ” side eye.)

I might be biased, but this birthday hat for dogs is possibly one of my favourite things in the entire world.

Oh man, lookit Kol. LOOKIT HIS FACE. I want to make him a hat for every single day of the year.  It’s also SUPER easy to make using my free DIY Dog Birthday hat printable, a little hot glue, string and craft pom poms.

Yield: 1 Hat

How to Make a Dog Birthday Hat

Celebrate your dog’s birthday and take the most adorable dog birthday photo with this free printable birthday hat.

Prep Time15 minutes Total Time15 minutes DifficultyEasy


  • White Card Stock
  • 24 – 1/2″ Craft Pom Poms
  • 1 – 3/4″ Craft Pom Pom
  • String to tie hat on


  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Colour Printer
  • Scissors or a Gyrocut


  1. Download the printable dog birthday hat & bow tie or gotcha day hat & bow tie file. Click here to download the free printable file.
  2. Cut out the hat template using scissors or a Gyrocut.
  3. Fold along the dotted line.
  4. Run a thin bead of hot glue down the printed side of the tab and wrap card so the tab overlaps the other end of the hat, fastening it into a cone shape. (Do not worry about the slight hole at the top of the hat. This is intentional to allow the top pom pom to be securely glued in place.)
  5. Starting that the back seam, hot glue on 1/4″ craft pom poms in any colour you like. Repeat until pom poms are all around the rim of the hat. (I placed the hat on a cut to keep it up off the table, otherwise, I probably would have glued it TO the table.)
  6. Turn hat upside down and put a generous amount of hot glue in the tip of the hat. Allow to set for 10 -15 seconds until no longer “drippy”. (Or not, is it really a craft if you don’t burn yourself with hot glue? I don’t think so.)
  7. Turn hat right side up, place a generous dab of glue on the top of the hat and glue on the larger pom pom.
  8. Place one end of the string on the base of the hat and glue in place. Imagine the hat diameter is a clock. If the dog and greeting is at 12 o’clock, glue the string at 3 and 9 o’clock.
  9. Allow glue to completely cool.


All craft pom pom measurements are approximate because craft pom poms are so hard to measure, yo.

If you don’t have a colour printer, you’re cool. You can print these at Staples, Office Depot or any office store.

© Jodi ChickCategory: Paper Projects for Dog Lovers

And, you don’t HAVE TO use this for the dog. The Happy Birthday printable hat is perfect for kids who love dogs and want to have a dog-themed birthday party.

Once your hat is made and drying, you need to start the bowtie. (It’s CUTE RIGHT?) I’m a huge fan of fabric bowties and my friend Rochelle from Brooklyn Bowtied (and also, the Broke Dog) makes like, the cutest dog bow ties around, but let’s face it. I’m IRRESPONSIBLE and having a bow tie ready for Kol’s birthday would have meant selecting and purchasing a bow tie like a month ago, so you know, paper it is.

9. Cut out the bow tie using scissors or a Gyrcocut. I left the tabs a little longer than drawn to ensure I had plenty of space for it to slip on and off Kol’s collar. Wrap tabs around your dog’s collar to ensure they fit, remove collar and glue tabs only in place.

10. Flip bowtie over and glue a large pom pom onto the center.

BOOM! You’ve done it! A custom made, DIY dog birthday hat & bow tie combo. Or you know, little girl dogs could even wear it like a hair bow!

Next up on my craft list was an adorable birthday banner. I know you can pick these up at a party store and they’re cute enough, but I have this thing for matching party kits, so I really wanted the hat & bow tie to match the birthday banner. That meant creating free printables for those too.

I love making custom birthday banners.

They aren’t that much harder than the ones you buy at the store and there’s something about them that just makes me SUPER happy.

Yield: 1 Banner

Printable Birthday Banner for Dog Lovers

Say Happy Birthday with this free printable birthday banner covered in adorable dogs

Prep Time5 minutes Total Time5 minutes DifficultyEasy


  • White Card Stock
  • Paper Fasteners


  • Scissors
  • Hole Punch


  1. Print the free banner. Click here to download the file.
  2. Cut out each piece of the banner
  3. Use a hole punch to put a hole in the top two corners of each banner
  4. Connect the banner pieces together using paper fasteners.
© Jodi ChickCategory: Paper Projects for Dog Lovers

Last, but not least, every party needs an invitation- and these puppy birthday party invitations are as cute as they come!

You can download the free printable birthday party invitations here.

As if all that spoiling wasn’t enough? I also made that yahoo a special dog birthday cake with his favourite flavours: carob and peanut butter.

Is there any dog in the whole world that wouldn’t die for that cake? He loved it.

Do you have a rescue dog and you’re not sure when their birthday is? Click here to download the hat and banner that says GOTCHA DAY instead of Birthday 🙂

How do you celebrate dog birthdays? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to share photos!

Do you want more dog-friendly Birthday content?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *