Birthday FAQ

What is the celebration agenda?

  • 20 minutes, Critter Craft (enrichment* for shelter animals) as guests arrive
  • 30 minutes, interactive Humane Education lesson
  • 30 minutes, behind-the-scenes tour
  • 10 minutes, animal interactions*
  • 15 minutes, party favor “adoptions”
  • 15 minutes, Critter Craft (to take home)
  • 30 minutes, designated for socializing/refreshments

*Enrichment: It is important that the animals in our care are exposed to a variety of activities throughout the day in order to keep them both mentally and physically healthy. We have also found that our party guests enjoy doing something for the animals (e.g. making cat toys). The enrichment activity will be chosen by the Humane Education Coordinator as the day of the party nears, based upon the needs of the facility.

*Animal interactions: For everyone’s safety, access to the kennels in Doggy Drive is restricted for those under 16. However, a dog from our Canine Comfort program may be available upon request. If any attending children have an aversion to dogs, we will instead spend extra time in Kitty City with the adoptable felines.

When are birthday celebrations offered?
Parties are booked on Saturdays after 1 pm and run 2-1/2 hours, with the last 30 minutes of the party designated for socializing and any refreshments you may provide.

What is the cost?
Fee is $275  for up to 10 children, ages 6 and up. Additional children may be added for $10 each, with a cap of 16 children per celebration. Siblings age 5 and older are welcome as registered guests, however, we ask that other arrangements be made for younger siblings. A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required within one week of your date confirmation.

The following is included in the birthday program fee:

  • Rental of the classroom facilities for 2.5 hours
  • Printable invitation template
  • Dedicated Humane Educator to facilitate the program
  • Animal-themed party décor, tablecloths, and banners
  • Eco-friendly partyware
  • Behind-the-scenes tour
  • Animal interactions
  • Two Critter Crafts
  • Party favors for each guest
    • plush dog or cat with collar and tag in cardboard carrier, adoption contract
  • Special gift for the birthday child

Where are the celebrations offered?
Birthdays are hosted on-site in our VHS Classroom at 3670 Nevada Street Pleasanton, CA 94566. You are welcome to stop by to see the space any time that the adoption center is open (Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10am – 4pm). We do not offer at-home or off-site birthdays.

How long is the party?
The birthday program is 2-1/2 hours; our staff will facilitate the party for two hours of that time. Guests are welcome to spend the last half hour socializing and having any light refreshments you may provide. Please be prepared to wrap up promptly.

What ages are the parties geared towards?
Our parties are for children turning 6-11. We will adapt the program to your child’s age; however, please keep in mind that the program is similar for all ages. For ages 12-16, we host Paws for a Cause celebrations, with service project crafts and team-building activities for your teen and guests. Please contact us for more information.

How many guests may we have?
There is a maximum guest limit of 16 children. The 16 guests include the birthday child, siblings and any other child who attends and participates or wishes to receive a favor. Adults do not count as guests. However, if you have more than 10 guests, many of their parents will need to drop off/pick up without attending, as we can only accommodate 20 – 24 total attendees (depending on the ages of the children). We ask that adults present during the party assist with children as needed and help the Educator with simple tasks such as holding doors and keeping all party guests together.

May we bring in food?
You are welcome to bring in cake, beverages, or other light refreshments. Please let us know if you are bringing refreshments and what kind. We provide eco-friendly partyware (napkins, cups, utensils, plates, bowls) and assist with food serving if necessary. We do not provide any food or candles. There is a refrigerator/freezer and a small microwave available if you need to store or warm food during the party. We cannot accommodate pizza deliveries. Please keep in mind that the celebration program only allows 30 minutes for refreshments.

May we decorate the room?
Decorations are provided. You may of course bring additional décor, but if you wish to hang anything on the wall, you will need to bring blue painter’s tape. Scotch tape, masking tape, duct tape, etc. are not allowed. Piñatas, confetti, or balloons of any kind are not allowed.

In lieu of gifts for the birthday child, may we ask for donations for Valley Humane Society?
Yes, of course! We have many birthday guests who want to give back to the community by asking their friends for donations or to bring in items for the animals. Please see our wish list of needed items. Anyone may make a donation in honor of the birthday child at our front desk or by calling (925) 426-8656 and specifying “Humane Education, Birthday Donation,” and they will receive a thank-you letter from us. If guests do bring presents for the birthday child, we won’t have time to open them during the celebration.

May we bring our dog/cat to the celebration?
No, for the safety of your pet and our guests, please leave your animals at home.