Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Dog Inspired Valentine's Day Crafts

By Tamara McRill

I'm a dog person who likes to make special things for every holiday. So of course I had to make some Valentine's Day crafts inspired by my canine loves! The three doggie Valentine’s Day crafts featured here offer a little something for everyone and are fairly easy to make. They even make excellent gifts for the dog lovers in your life.

Sweetheart Dog Book Page Art

Have you ever seen those framed book pages with an ink drawing or sketch of a dog on them and wished you could have one of your pet? I have and finally figured out just how simple it was to make. Especially after using some of the same techniques used in making a dog portrait pumpkin.

Supplies: Ruler, scissors, tape, pencil, black ink pen or fine point marker, red marker, book or newspaper page, frame, computer and photo of your dog.

1.  Measure the opening of your photo frame.

2.  Cut your book or newspaper page 1/2 inch wider than that measurement. (Bonus points if you can find a page about dogs.)

3.  Bring up your dog’s photograph on your computer screen. Blow it up just big enough to fit in the center of your book page.

4.  Tape your book page to your monitor and lightly trace the photograph. You don’t have to get too detailed, just get the general impression, but don’t forget to give the idea of your pet’s general markings.

5.  Untape your book page and go over what you have traced with a black pen or marker.

6.  Color the dog’s tongue and collar with red marker.

7.  Draw a red heart in the upper right or wherever you like best.

8.  Frame your book page art.

Of course, feel free to take any artistic license! Dusty was quite fascinated with his portrait.

Heart Paw Print Ornament 

What I love about this craft is that it’s adaptable, i.e., you can make many variations. I’m thinking it would make a great addition to my dog themed Christmas tree. One word of caution though: If your dog doesn’t like his paws messed with, please form the paw print with your thumbs.

Supplies: Exacto knife or heart cookie cutter, black permanent marker, food coloring, red crystal cookie sprinkles, cookie sheet, rolling pin, oven, bakable “clay” dough, toothpick, ribbon and your dog. (The bakable “clay” dough recipe is after the steps, and makes about four ornaments.)

1.  Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

2.  Roll out the clay dough until it is ¼ inch thick.

3.  Use the exacto knife or heart cookie cutter to cut out your hearts. Be sure these are big enough for your dog’s print to go in the center.

4.  Gently press your dog’s paw into the clay. If your dog has long hair between her pads, you may have to gently spread the paw to get a good print.

5.  Give your pet a CANIDAE dog treat for indulging your shenanigans.

6.  Use the toothpick to make a hole near the top of the disk above the print, big enough to thread your ribbon through.

7.  Use the toothpick or marker to write your pet’s name on the ornament.

8.  Place the dough on the cookie sheet. Add the red sprinkles where the paw print is.

9.  Place the cookie sheet in the oven and bake for approximately 10 minutes. Keep an eye on it so it doesn’t burn. The color of the dough will lighten as it bakes.

10. Let your ornaments cool and string with your ribbon.

As you can see from the picture, I tried to make a “love” sign with my dough, but the “V” was too puny when I assembled it.

Bakable “Clay” Dough:

1 cup flour
¼ cup salt
½ cup water
10-15 drops food coloring


1.   Mix the flour and salt together.

2.   With your hands, gradually mix in water until the dough becomes all the way moist, but doesn’t stick to your hands.

3.   Add food coloring and knead until you like the color.  Don’t forget the color will fade as the ornament bakes.

Valentine Dog Hand Puppet

This puppet craft makes a fun toy to play with your dog, as long as you make sure he doesn’t eat any of it. Or maybe he’ll just cuddle with it, like Cody did.

Supplies: Scissors, tape or glue, brown paper lunch sack, black marker and colored paper (enough for four hearts).

1.   Cut out four hearts from your colored paper: two for the ears, one for the nose and one for the tongue.

2.   The face of your dog puppet will be the bottom of the sack. With your tape or glue, fasten one ear each to each top corner, heart points facing outward.

3.   Draw the eyes on with the marker.

4.   With the heart point facing up, fasten on the nose.

5.   Taking the rounded edges of your last heart, fasten it underneath the folded flap of your bag. Make sure a portion sticks out for the tongue.

6.   Draw on a smile.

7.   Play!

Do you have any other ideas for pet-themed ornaments, or perhaps you’ve made some yourself? Feel free to share in the comments!

Photos by Tamara McRill 

Read more articles by Tamara McRill


  1. Thank you for the craft lesson, i will have to get my humans to make some of them.


  2. Those look like some fun crafts to do. We haven't ever done any stuff like that and what fun to do it for your dog or cat. Thanks for the directions.

  3. Like the sweetheart dog book art idea..and WHO wouldn't want one of my adorable little Max?! :)
    Max's Mom


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