Podcast Episode 59: Turning Your Dog’s Birthday Party Into a Business with Mandy Diaz of Pawty in a Box

Welcome to Podcast Episode 59: Turning Your Dog’s Birthday Party Into a Business with Mandy Diaz of Pawty in a Box. On this episode, I’m talking to a party planning entrepreneur who discovered an opportunity to create a product that she couldn’t find anywhere else. You’ll hear how she found inspiration, the risks she took to get it off the ground and how she found success by scaling back. You’ll also get some tips and ideas for planning your own puppy celebrations.

Birthday Party Decor Kit for Dogs

Mandy Diaz is the creator of Pawty in a Box, the first birthday party accessories decor kit for dogs in the US. It was created on February 14, 2014 when she celebrated her beloved Nouba’s Birthday Party but couldn’t find any themed party items made for dogs that were cool! This is where the idea for Pawty in a Box® came to life, she decided to create an exclusively designed dog party decor kit that took the stress out of decorating for pawrents on the go providing all of the decor items needed in 1 box.

Nouba passed in 2016 but you can catch a glimpse of him in her logo and with every purchase, his memory is kept alive by celebrating your dog! So go on, celebrate your Dogs Birthday or Gotcha Day, after all, they are only here to give us love.

P.S.  She rescued a delicious American Bulldog/Pit mix named Handsome and then they lived happily ever after….

(00:00) Intro
(00:55) Introducing Mandy Diaz, Pawty in a Box
(02:21) How Mandy started her business from her own personal shopping trip
(05:02) What the first pawty box was
(09:30) What goes inside these boxes
(12:17) Where Mandy keeps all the boxes and who helps her with shipping
(18:30) Advice on how to plan an awesome pawty for your pup
(19:57) How Mandy manages her time
(21:36) Mandy’s advice for dog moms starting their own business
(24:56) How Handsome, Mandy’s dog, came into her life
(26:02) Where to find Mandy Diaz


Creating a Dog Birthday Party Theme

Mandy: I design events for a living, but I’m not a master designer. I would use Photoshop and create Pinterest boards with ideas. I know when you put things out there and you’re really committed on what it is that you want to do, things will come to you. And it just so happened that a friend of a friend asked if I knew this woman who works on product design. I really didn’t put two and two together. So I had a conversation with her and she said, “this is exactly what I do. I can make your vision come to life.”

I started with 12 different dog birthday party themes. And we started working on all of the components inside of the box. It was a long process because I wanted to keep it a neutral color palette so that you could decorate with cookies or cakes or florals, whatever you want to add to your or to the overall table design.

Pawty in a Box New Designs

Mandy: I’m launching a new donut theme soon. When I started with designing, I created the boxes for a party of eight dogs. I wanted a full blown party because you know, I’m Latin! I realize that’s not everybody’s way of celebrating with that amount of dogs. So I created the mini pawty box, which is for a celebration of a four.

I’m also launching my first Bark Day box, which is for a party of one. A lot of my clients for their dog’s first birthday, they’ll celebrate at home with their family and just the one dog.

Balancing a career and side hustle pet business

Mandy: My mom gave me the best advice ever. She always told me there are 24 hours in a day so you have to segment the day into three sections of eight hours. You have eight, eight and eight. There’s eight for your career, eight for sleep, and then you have to use those other eight hours wisely.

It’s definitely about time management. If you know how to manage your time properly and schedule yourself accordingly, everything is possible. You can definitely make it happen and have time to nourish yourself and take care of yourself as well. Because if you don’t, you’ll get burnout out.

Advice for dog moms who want to pursue their dream in the pet industry

Mandy: I would say, “just do it.” Remember, I did not have any experience with product design and I’m still figuring out it out along the way. I think it’s a beautiful thing what’s happening with women right now. There’s this whole movement of supporting each other and I think it’s really important to see what that looks like. We’re in a new age to lift each other up.

When you find like-minded women that do the same for you and inspire you, you do the same in return. That’s the whole thing with entrepreneurship, right? It’s not a straight line all the way up to success. When going down the yellow brick road, you’re going to hit roadblocks, but that’s part of the beauty of it. Sometimes we get frustrated, but just know that’s part of the journey and it’s not 100% about winning all the time.

pawty in a box dog birthday




More Episodes to Inspire Your Dog Birthday Business:
Episode 49: Creating a Style Savvy Dog Bakery with Jen Mello of Spotted Dog Bakery
Episode 90: Swap Gifts with Instagram Furiends with Gift Spawt
Episode 97: Hosting Dog Birthday Parties at Fetch RI
Episode 79: Bow Wow Dog Bakery


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Tori Mistick is a blogger, podcaster and certified Canine Enrichment Specialist. You might call her a professional dog mom! Tori has a soft spot for senior dogs and loves the color pink. Based in Pittsburgh, PA.


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