QUESTION: I just read an article that told about couples getting new pets and having “starter baby shower” parties for their pets, rather than for a baby. They signed up for a registry and asked friends for chew toys and treats for their dogs and cats. I think that is too much registering. I hate it! Whatever happened to being thankful that someone took the time to be thoughtful on their own? I thought we had gone too far with children's registries for birthday parties, despite the practicality. What do you think?
CALLIE'S ANSWER: That is just crazy. What more does a dog need then a couple of toys, a bed, food and water? While I love my dog, I can't imagine registering gifts for her. This registering thing definitely has gone too far. It is taking the fun out of giving!
LILLIE-BETH'S ANSWER: Celebrate your pets, but don't register for them. Registries are turning into a request for things instead of a celebration of a friendship, and this seems to be a case of going too far. Gift-giving should take into account the friendship and thoughtfulness of both the giver and a gracious receiver. A good friend might ask what you or your pet needs and then try to get it for you. Registries are handy, especially bridal ones, for letting people know colors and patterns going into homes. But I don't think pets have the ability to distinguish between the red or brown chew-toy and have a preference.
HELEN'S ANSWER: New pets are fun! If you decide to throw a party for your friends to meet the animal, then have fun doing that.
It seems to me that registering for pet presents is too much. If your guests want to bring a box of treats from the pet store, then they don't need help deciding that. Registries take the creativity from the gift giver.
Don't send out registry information on your invitation. That implies you are expecting a gift.
What did happen to being appreciative for whatever someone brings you and not dictating what they should bring?
GUEST'S ANSWER: Christina Nihira, journalist and community volunteer: The idea does seem a bit absurd given people's busy lives. However, couples are waiting longer to have children so maybe this is just a creative way to have some fun. I see this as more of an inspiration towards a silly “theme” party of sorts.
If a paw-print invite lands in your mailbox, rejoice that someone wants to spend time together and social with their new pet. Be happy that you get to cuddle a tiny sweet pup, kitty or some other furry animal. Grab a box of treats!
Callie Gordon is twenty-something, Lillie-Beth Brinkman is in her 40s, and social columnist Helen Ford Wallace is 60-plus. To ask an etiquette question, email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more 20-40-60 etiquette, go to blog.newsok.com/partiesextra.