Whoops, I guess the cat is out of the bag– my party guests now know that the soirée they attended was only $15. My bad. Luckily, they are some of the best people on Planet Earth and so I know they will understand and maybe even be impressed rather than disappointed.
If you feel that you should spend hundreds of dollars on your pet’s birthday party because they are a part of the family (which they ARE, I was not being sarcastic) and even go to the extent of hiring a party planner, be my guest. It actually sounds like a lot of fun and I hope to be invited to one someday. But for those of us that are trying to save every extra cent towards our financial goals, and we are honest enough with ourselves to know that our pet probably won’t appreciate it as much as the humans do… we’re going to keep the budget low. WAY low, in fact. But that doesn’t mean that we will be low on fun and adorable-ness.
Here are the key ideas I used to make the party an affordable blast. (Note: this party was a few months ago, because I wanted to dedicate the blog posts since then to more Halloween related things. Thanks for your patience!)
- Fresh Breath Kisses (If you already have coconut oil line I did it is under $5, but if you must buy that as well it is about $10)
- Cat Birthday Cake ($4)
- Paw Print Cake for Humans ($6)
Party Favors – Fresh Breath Kisses (for dogs)
Source: DIY Dog Mom (USE SNIP.LY)
- Coconut Oil ($5)
- Fresh mint leaves ($2)
- Fresh parsley ($2)
Now I’ll be honest, in my hurry to get this party on the road I didn’t take the time to try to find a mold for these treats. Therefore, they did not turn out as adorable little paw prints that look almost appetizing enough for a human to nibble on as the DIY Dog Mom made them. I thought that I could mix the ingredients up, put it in a ziplock and cut the tip off, squeeze them into adorable little kiss shapes on a plate and put them in the fridge. While I’m not completely wrong, they don’t always squeeze out as adorable little dollops onto the plate because the chunks of mint leaves clog the hole of the bag. Instead of a smooth pour, it will stop altogether and then squirt and entire glop. (How do you like those describing words, eh?) the good news is you can still cut the giant flop into the perfect bite-size pieces after they harden in the fridge, they just may not look picture-perfect.
However, I still recommend them as a favor at a pet party or even just as a gift to your dog (and a gift to everyone that receives stinky breath kisses from your dog) to give them after a smelly meal. The recipe is downright easy, and as far as I have seen, dogs like them.
Plus, it’s all natural- just coconut oil, parsley and mint leaves freshly chopped, and turmeric (which reduces inflammation in the body for humans and fur babies alike!)
Even if they didn’t turn out perfect, my guests loved that they got cute little party favor bags filled with treats for their puppies. You can’t let guests leave empty handed, even if the treats aren’t for human consumption.
**Looking for the recipe? Head over to DIY Dog Mom‘s for more.**
Cat Birthday Cake with Shrimp Topping
- Canned tuna ($1)
- Cheese of choice ($1.50)
- Flour (free, you likely have it on hand!)
- Egg (you likely have some or one to borrow, but a crate of eggs is about $3)
- Shrimp (mini in a can is only $1.50)
I had a lot of fun making this little cake. I also had a ton of fun with these pictures of us as a family blowing out the candle on the cake! And I’ll admit it was pretty fun singing Happy Birthday to a cat. But Prim? She didn’t really have as much fun as we did, unfortunately. It’s okay, 99% of the time she does what she wants when she wants. It’s only fair that she gives her Mommy and Daddy this little party once a year, right?
Kitty (Prim’s very original nickname) wasn’t really into this cake. I’m really not sure why. I think all of the commotion turned her off to the idea of eating it that night, and then the next day it wasn’t fresh enough for her anymore. Whatever the reason, I have a feeling that if I were to try again and make it fresh while she was in the comfort of her quiet tiny home, she would gobble it up. You better believe I will be doing this experiment again.
The recipe isn’t too complicated and it took me less than 10 minutes to prepare, and then it just needs about 15 minutes in the oven. It’s all things that are completely healthy, unlike some of the cat cake recipes I came across (such as sprinkles- adorable to look at, but I’m not so sure that is for more than just humans) including tuna, egg white, a little cheese, flour, and then a shrimp (or a bunch of tiny shrimp like I did) on top as a garnish. It looked perfect to me, but our VIP was too stressed to enjoy it. Ah well, you win some you lose some.
If you try or have tried it with your cat, let me know in the comments!
Paw Human Cake
Again guys, I hope you’re seeing that I am completely truthful about my reviews of ideas and recipes I find or make up on my own. I wouldn’t steer you wrong. I won’t say a project or recipe is easy when it absolutely is not- because I can’t stand when that happens to me. And boy, was this a TOUGH cake to bake!
Let me clarify- tough probably isn’t the right word. It just takes an extremely long time to make it. Although some of the reason for that is the fact that I made it in a small toaster oven because our RV ovens are a little harder to use and we didn’t want to heat the place up. (This was in the midst of a summer heat wave of 107!) So I had to go back and forth over and again from inside to outside where this toaster oven is to bake all 5 cakes. Now that’s commitment!
Each cake itself is super duper easy. You simply follow the instructions on the box (they were not made from scratch, no) and find the right sized baking pan for each piece. Also, you can make the cakes custom like I did so that your guests have a gluten and gluten free options. Let me walk you through it. You’ll need:
- 1 box chocolate cake mix ($1.50)
- 1 box gluten-free yellow cake ($2)
- 1 can strawberry frosting ($2)
- 1 can cherry frosting ($2)
- Rainbow sprinkles ($1)
- 6 candles ($1)
- Red Icing for Writing ($1.50)
- Peppermint hard candies ($1)
1) The Base of the Paw Print
This part was done in a normal round cake pan 9 inches wide. I purchased normal chocolate cake mix from a box, costing about $1.50 at Walmart. I mixed it according to the directions with egg, water and oil. A slight change is that I did not have vegetable oil, so I used Avacado oil instead. (I think this may have been what made it taste so heavenly!! But I don’t know for sure, since it was just so delicious and moist all the way around.)
Then I baked it for about 25 as the directions said (cause I’m a rule follower!) and waited until it cooled. Then I cut to of the corners off of the cake so that it was more of a triangle shape as real paws tend to be shaped. Another option to make it even more realistic is to cut the bottom of this triangle into a curving shape as well for more accuracy and recognizability. Next, I frosted this chocolate cake with cherry frosting, which went along with Prim’s one-year-old Princess party set covered in pink and ALSO was a delicious combo!! Sweet, rich and tangy, yummmm….
Lastly on this piece, I sprinkled the rainbow sprinkles and wrote “Happy Adoption Day, Prim” with the red icing as a little joke because we did it on the day we found her instead of her real day of birth. That was the day that all of our new lives started, together, when our friends rescued that adorable little creature from inside of a bush while a dog barked and threatened it. We saw that little face on a facetime call from them and we knew, she had to be ours. This day will be celebrated every year from now on, because it’s so important to us!
2) Each “Toe” of the Paw
This part was a little bit more unconventional. I have a small crockpot that is about 6 inches wide and very deep. I took the metal pot out from inside the crockpot packaging and used it as a little baking pot, because it was the right size when compared to the large base of my paw. Try to find something that could be about the same width and can be baked in the oven. Or if you simply can’t find anything of the right size, use muffin tins for the toes but use a smaller cake pan for the base of the paw (or cut the base out of a normal sized cake exactly the size and shape that you want it) to make the ratios look correct.
Now, it’s time for the baking. You will have to keep checking each of these 6″ cakes with a toothpick to make sure that they are thoroughly cooked but not too dry. This is because there is no perfectly proven recipe for this size of cake, and if you are going to do a normal cake mix in addition to or instead of gluten free, each different type will need a different baking time. I started with 10 minutes and kept checking the cakes every 5 minutes or so. If memory serves, it needed about 20 minutes, but again you will need to experiment a little because you are using an unusual size of “cake pan.” If you are making the toes cupcakes or muffin sized, follow the directions for that size on the cake mix box.
Just as you did with the large cake, the next step is to decorate. I frosted each toe with strawberry frosting because I wanted my guests to have a couple of different cake choices. One of the toes I frosted with cherry however, to give three different combo options to the guests: Chocolate cake with cherry frosting, gluten-free yellow cake with strawberry frosting and gluten-free yellow cake with cherry frosting. It all looked pretty cohesive and cute together, but was very practical for a group with so many gluten free people. Also, did you know that all frosting says gluten free on the jar? For some reason it is in tiny little writing near the ingredients instead of advertised clearly, but it’s true! You learn something new every day.
Lastly, all of the toes need rainbow sprinkles as well. Then add the final touch, the nails on the toes! I used peppermint hard candies because they went with my pink and red theme, but you could also use almond slices as they would be the perfect shape for this purpose. They looked adorable and went well with the aesthetic of the round toes. The grand finale is a candle on each toe. Hold your kitty and blow out the candles for her/him! It may not be a favorite activity for cats, but it’s adorable to the humans in the room!
All in all, we had a great time gathering together in the tiny home to celebrate the day Prim came into our lives. We wouldn’t want to do life without her, and I’m willing to bet if you’re looking for Pet Party ideas, you feel the same way about your furbaby. Gather the friends together and celebrate the occasion, without breaking the bank. Plus, you may get some adorable cat-themed presents out of it! (If you will be a guest at a cat birthday party, the great news for you is the presents don’t have to be more than a dollar or two. I promise you, all of the cats I have owned have liked FREE string, paper or rubber bands more than store-bought toys. There is no one less expensive to shop for!)
Your turn! Have you ever thrown a party for your dog or cat? Have you included them in some kind of party? Have you ever fed your cat a home-made cake? What did they think of it? Let me know in the comments!
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