Willy, a hairy golden retriever, is a former Victorian who now lives on a farm in Cobble Hill where he has discovered the joys of deer and rabbits. (Christine van Reeuwyk)

A good day for pets

April 11th celebrates pets and the joy they bring to our lives while promoting animal adoption

National Pet Day has been celebrated on April 11th for the past 14 years and was founded by pet and family lifestyle expert and animal welfare advocate Colleen Paige.

The international day intends to raise awareness of animals in need of adoption/rescue, and also, to put animals on a pedestal (as if us pet owners don’t already) in recognition of the joy they bring to us; their beauty, innocence, and offerings of unconditional love.

READ MORE:Happy National Pet Day: Here’s a look at the six richest pets of all time

Paige offers these suggestions for “Ways to Celebrate National Pet Day”:

“1. Adopt a pet from your local shelter or pure breed rescue organization.

2. Volunteer at your local shelter and offer to care for the animals.

3. Donate blankets, food and toys to a favorite animal welfare organization.

4. Organize a peaceful demonstration in front of your community pet store that sells pets from puppy or kitten mills.

5. Have a National Pet Day party and celebrate all your pets!

6. Spend the day taking photos of your pets and then post them on our Facebook page!

7. Assist an ill, elderly or a financially struggling neighbor or friend by purchasing pet food, hay or needed items for their pets.

8. Purchase a National Pet Day Tee Shirt (or other gift item) here, to express your devotion to all animals.

9. Buy your pet a fun new toy….or two…or five.

10. Post photos of your pets on social media using the hashtag #NationalPetDay”

READ MORE: B.C. needs to update laws to protect pets from dying in snare traps: Animal activists

From snakes and geckos to puppies and kittens…we love our best friends.

In some ways they are the dependable friends and maybe even family we’ve got.

Turns out, here at Black Press Media’s Greater Victoria Hub, we are largely cat lovers…with a couple of exceptions.

Be sure to toss your pets an extra cookie, spread some cat nip, and offer up extra snuggles on this National Pet Day!

Learn more about #NationalPetDay at www.nationalpetday.co.

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Gracie Michelle is a seal point siamese/tabby mix. She was rescued, by reporter Nina Grossman, as a senior cat after spending nine months at the Calgary Humane Society. Gracie is a food-motivated, snuggle-pusher who enjoys spending her mornings watching the birds and squirrels of cook street village and evenings walking around the neighbourhood in her pink harness. (Nina Grossman)

Ella is one of reporter, Nicole Crescenzi’s two Bengal cats from Ottawa. They’re extremely affectionate and love to play fetch. Ella is the wiser of the two, and a better wrestler. @bengal_cuties (Nicole Crescenzi)

Albus is one of reporter, Nicole Crescenzi’s two Bengal cats from Ottawa. They’re extremely affectionate and love to play fetch. Albus loves to host parties so he can sit on guests and demand pets from everyone who enters his territory. @bengal_cuties (Nicole Crescenzi)

Albus loves to host parties so he can sit on guests and demand pets from everyone who enters his territory. @bengal_cuties (Nicole Crescenzi)

Ella is the wiser of the two Bengals, and a better wrestler. @bengal_cuties (Nicole Crescenzi)

Editor-in-chief, Katie Engqvist’s feline friend, Murray, turns 3 on Monday! He’s a rescue that a local group brought over to free up shelter space during the Fort McMurray wildfire. He likes to sit on your face at 3 a.m. until you cuddle him. (Katie Engqvist)

Eddie and Themba. (Kendra Crighton)

Eddie enjoys running around at all hours of the night, making copious amounts of noise and sleeping all day. (Kendra Crighton)

Themba was found wandering the streets of Calgary and soon after found reporter, Kendra Crighton. Themba is known for making disapproving faces and sitting at the dinner table. (Kendra Crighton)

Reporter, Kendra Crighton’s cat, Themba.

Kalo is a 9 year-old beastly Lynx Point Siamese with a nub-tail. Kalo found social media coordinator, Matteus O’Connor, on a front porch just two weeks after he moved to the city. (Matteus O’Connor)

Dan Ebenal’s dog Marley is harassed by his cat Jackson.

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