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Dog 'pawty': 3 pet owners share why they spend hundreds of dollars on their pets' birthday parties

Pet owners are shelling out the cash for their beloved animals' birthday parties — why? Fox News Digital spoke with pet owners who threw "pawties" for their pet.

Happy birthday! 

Americans across the country celebrate birthdays every day — and sometimes even for their beloved pets. 

Approximately 66% of U.S. households own a pet in 2023, with roughly 65.1 million of those households specifically owning a dog, according to the American Pet Products Association. 

Pet owners share why they've chosen to throw birthday parties for their pets and to what extent they go to celebrate a four-legged member of their family.

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Sandra Macedo is the proud owner of a one-year-old long-haired Dalmatian named Ryder.

Ryder recently had his first birthday party in Atlanta, Georgia, including invitations, a cake, piñata, decorations and gifts. 

The content creator told Fox News Digital that the birthday party probably cost her about $100 and she'll definitely be hosting one every year for her precious pup.

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"Whether you got your dog as a puppy or [at] a few years old, they're here for only a few years, if we are lucky, so I think they absolutely deserve a birthday celebration dedicated to them," she said. 

Macedo said Ryder is her "soul dog" — noting she's always wanted a dog like him. 

"I’ve always wanted a Dalmatian, so he holds an extra special place in my heart, and I want to celebrate him every single day," she said. 

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Another dog owner, this one based in California, talked to Fox News Digital about her special pet.

She said her dog has more friends than she does — and given that, a birthday party was clearly warranted this year. 

Erika Ekman is the proud mom of a four-and-a-half-year-old Golden Retriever named Lady. 

The Orange County, California, content creator said she celebrates her dog just as she would a friend of hers. 

"She is a VERY important family member. We want to make it special for her," she said. 

Jokingly, Ekman said she spent more money on Lady’s most recent birthday party than she would comfortably do for her husband. 

"We usually invite six dogs and 12 people — most dogs are Lady’s best friends … She’s been friends with [them] for a long time," she said.

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Ekman also agreed that she'll continue to throw Lady birthday parties for years to come. 

Another dog mom, however, threw her Golden Retriever a first birthday party — and invited each of his eight siblings.

Ally Diaz is a bridal makeup artist from Palm Springs, California, who recently threw an extravagant first birthday party for her dog named Sunny. 

She told Fox News Digital about the day to remember.

Diaz said that Sunny’s party was a unique one, as all eight of his siblings attended the occasion. 

"For the dogs' first birthday, we wanted to reunite them all with their pet siblings and their pet parents," she said.

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Diaz said her dad owns the mother of the pups, while a family friend owns the pups' dad — meaning all nine dogs from the litter are in close proximity, with most belonging to family members. 

This was the first reunion for the dogs since they were taken home as puppies.

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"To prepare for the event, we made favor boxes for the dogs filled with toys and treats and made them cute attire to wear for the party," she said.

The dog owner said she went all out for their first birthday with favor bags, photo drops, balloons, a piñata, dog popsicles, cupcakes and more. 

In total, Diaz said she spent about $300 on the backyard event, with 25 humans also in attendance — something she said was absolutely worth it.

"Dog events are a great opportunity for the dogs to socialize and interact with each other in a controlled and safe environment," she said about the choice to hold a birthday party for the dogs. 

Since the Golden Retrievers live in the desert, Diaz said the pool party theme was a must. 

"We had so much fun with the first event that we can’t wait for the next one," she said. 

Diaz said the group of dog owners will continue to celebrate the dogs each year.

She said it's a great way to connect with other animal lovers while sharing beloved stories of their four-legged family members.

For more Lifestyle articles, visit www.foxnews.com/lifestyle.

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