Well-Heeled: So Fetch!

There’s nothing quite like the unconditional love of a dog. And when you love furry friends as much as Lisa Shover Kackley, a puppy party is sure to be a tail-wagging great time.

Shover Kackley and her 3-year-old black German Shepard, Dassher, are huge supporters of our animal community. Shover Kackley is a trustee of the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust, which supports animals and nature as part of its mission, and she and Dassher recently chaired Arizona Science Center’s Galaxy Gala to support the new exhibit, Dogs! A Science Tail. 

So, when Shover Kackley asked Traci Chandler, the owner of Oh, Sugar! Events + Paperie, to help her create a party for her four-legged friend, Chandler unleashed her creativity and designed something to howl about.

Get a Tail Count 

Creating an invitation gets guests excited to come, sit, stay and play. Not only do paper invites prepare two- and four-legged friends for a fun romp in the grass, they also offer you a chance to design a party theme, which eases the planning process. Create something that reflects your style, whether it’s whimsical, traditional or paw-sitively pretty. And have fun with it! It’s a pet party, after all.

Tail-Wagging Fun 

When setting the table for dogs, the rules don’t apply. This is your chance to get wild and waggy. Chandler featured a child-height table so the dogs could walk up to the table for a nibble. She found travel pet feeders, set them on placemats made of artificial grass, filled each bowl with kibble, and set a freshly baked dog bone at each place setting. And make sure to have water on hand! 

Chandler also created custom place cards for each furry friend and placed them on individual blue pots planted with fresh ranunculus. She recommends using flowers because once the party is over, you can plant them in your garden for a vivid memory of a great day.

Celebrate Your Pup In Style

Chandler finds design inspiration in color schemes from invitation suites she creates for events. Dassher’s invitation featured bright primary colors, so the blooms that brought life to the party needed to pop. For a lively element, she adorned each vase with a puppy chew toy and brightly colored tennis balls.

Tails Down, Bottoms Up 

We love all things dog-related, and that includes a dog-themed cocktail bar. A trip to the  grocery store proved the perfect solution. Chandler curated several wines and beers that featured canine branding for a festive look at the bar. A signature cocktail is always a hit, and the ever-popular “Salty Dog” was the perfect fresh cocktail for Dassher’s soiree.

Catering to All Creatures Great and Small

We know pooches have giant appetites, but our two-legged friends do too. Chandler created a pup-inspired charcuterie board featuring cheese cut into canine shapes, carrots carved like dog bones and other tasty nibbles. She also served hot dogs and paw-tato chips in bags printed to match the party invitation. Dog bone pupp-eroni dippers were also a  hit — phyllo dough stuffed with mozzarella and pepperoni formed in the shape of dog bones and served with marinara. Sweet treats included shortbread cookies dipped and decorated like dog bones, bone-inspired rice crispy treats and sweet-and-salty puppy chow.

Belly Rubs and Tail Wags

A doggie treat bar takes the doggie bag to the next level. You can easily create a jolly guest experience by compiling some of your dog’s favorite treats to share with their furry friends. Chandler used pretty glass canisters to stash dog treats and fresh-baked dog cookies. Each guest got to create a to-go bag full of treats and toys for their precious pooch. Chandler also found pre-packaged puppy kits with essentials for traveling with pups. Tying a cute ribbon on the box that coordinated with the rest of the décor added an extra surprise for each guest to take home.

To learn more, visit ohsugarevents.com.

About Karen Werner

Karen Werner is the editor of Frontdoors Media. She is a writer, editor and media consultant. She has interned at The New Yorker, worked at Parents Magazine, edited five books and founded several local magazines. Her work has appeared in Sunset, Mental Floss and the Saturday Evening Post.
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