By: | | Dogs, Cats

My family and I love board games almost as much as we love our pets! And we’re always on a lookout for ways to combine those two passions with pet-themed board games.

For this article, I’ve teamed up with my household’s resident board game expert, my 13-year-old son, Gavin, to bring you our favorite dog and cat-themed board games. All of these games are owned, played, and loved by our family, and we’re sure you’ll enjoy them too!

From strategy games where you collect different breeds of dogs to cooperative games where you work together to rescue cats, there’s something for everyone in the world of pet-themed board games. Whether you’re a cat person, a dog person, or just a board game enthusiast, there’s bound to be a game on this list that will have you wagging your tail or purring with delight.

Best Cat-Themed Board Games

Calico

1-4 Players | 30-45 Minutes | Ages 10+

a display of the board game, Calico

Calico is a charming and challenging board game that is sure to delight fans of strategy and puzzle games and cat-lovers alike. The game revolves around trying to create the coziest and most attractive quilt possible. Players “sew” their quilts by placing hexagonal quilt tiles on their boards. Earn points by making connected groups of patterns and colors and attracting cats to your quilt. The game is easy to learn but difficult to master, with each turn providing new opportunities for strategic thinking and creative problem-solving. The art and design of the game are also top-notch, with adorable cats and colorful fabrics that really bring the game to life.

The Isle of Cats

Standard Mode: 1-4 Players (up to 6 with Expansion) | 60 – 90 Minutes | Ages 12+
Family Mode: 2-4 Players (up to 6 with Expansion) | 30 – 60 Minutes | Ages 8+

a display of the board game, The Isle of Cats

The Isle of Cats is a fantastic board game that combines strategy, puzzle-solving, and adorable cats! The game is set on a mysterious island filled with precious treasures and, of course, feline friends. The art and design of the game are stunning, with beautifully illustrated cats and intricate game pieces that transport players to a whimsical world of adventure. To win, players must rescue as many cats as they can while also collecting valuable treasures in their boat. Each cat or treasure is a uniquely-shaped tile that you must find a way to fit together on your boat. The game includes both a standard mode and an easier to play family mode for children and less experienced gamers. There are also six expansions available for the game and an additional standalone game, The Isle of Cats: Explore & Draw which has similar gameplay to The Isle of Cats, but with players drawing their cats and treasures onto their boat instead of placing tiles.

Cat Rescue

1-5 Players | 15 Minutes | Ages 8+

a display of the card game, Cat Rescue

Cat Rescue is a cooperative card game about rescuing cats and finding them forever homes. In the game, players take on the role of animal rescuers, working to save as many stray cats as possible. Rescued cats are placed into a grid, “the shelter”, or in front of a player, their “foster home”. Players work together sliding cats into the shelter to line up three or four cat cards of the same color to prepare them for adoption, and then sliding them out of the shelter and into their forever home. The more cats you adopt into loving homes, the higher your score. The game is family-friendly and easy to learn, with fun gameplay and just the right amount of puzzling challenge.

Cat Lady

2-4 Players (1-6 with Expansion) | 30 Minutes | Ages 8+

a display of the card game, Cat Lady

Cat Lady is a purrfectly delightful card game that revolves around adopting and taking care of cats. Players collect different cats and try to feed them the right combination of food, in addition to collecting toys, costumes, and catnip to keep their cats happy and score points. The artwork is charming and whimsical, featuring an array of adorable felines in various colors with adorable names. Cat Lady also has two expansions, “Box of Treats” and “Kittens.” The Box of Treats expansion includes new items, boxes, cat treats, and new cats. The Kittens expansion includes kittens as a new type of cat card, as well as, three additional stray cat cards (one of which is actually a dog).

Speaking of dogs…

Best Dog-Themed Board Games

Dog Lover

2-4 Players | 30 Minutes | Ages 10+

a display of the card game, Dog Lover

Dog Lover is a card game inspired by Cat Lady, but with a few unique twists of its own. In this game, players collect treats, bones, and food for their dogs, while also rescuing dogs from the shelter and teaching them new tricks. The cards feature adorable canine illustrations that will make you want to adopt them all. The trick cards add an extra layer of strategy to the game, allowing you to expand your drawing power. The player who takes care of their beloved dogs best will score the most victory points and win. The game is not too complex, making it perfect for casual gamers or families with kids.

Good Dog, Bad Zombie

a display of the board game, Good Dog, Bad Zombie

Good Dog, Bad Zombie is a cooperative game where you and your friends play as dogs living through the zombie apocalypse. Being good doggos, you are working together to rescue the last remaining humans. Players take turns moving their dogs around the game board, sniffing out humans in hiding and moving them to safety, and fighting off the undead. The design of the game is adorable, with each square of the board featuring a different location labelled as a dog would describe it, like “Squirrel Town” for the woods or “The Worst Place” for the vet’s office. All the dogs in the game are based on real dogs, each with their own unique personality and special ability. There’s even an option to play as your own dog using the custom dog card creator on the manufacturer’s website. There are also two expansions available for the game, “Weird Smells” and “Unlikely Allies” which add new missions, abilities, and characters to the game.

Dog Park

1-4 Players | 40-80 Minutes | Ages 10+

a display of the board game, Dog Park

Dog Park is a board game where players take on the role of dog walkers, collecting and walking different dogs. The game involves resource management, set collection, and push your luck mechanics. At the end of the game, the player with the most points wins and is crowned the best dog walker. Each card features a different and beautifully illustrated dog breed. The game mechanics are easy to learn, but there is enough strategy involved to keep the game interesting and engaging. The artwork is adorable and captures the essence of each dog breed perfectly.

Honorable Mention

Verdant

1-5 Players | 30-45 Minutes | Ages 10+

a display of the card game, Verdant

Verdant is actually a game about growing houseplants, but we’re including it here as an honorable mention for a pet-themed board game because of the adorable cats, dogs, and other pets it includes as components to enhance your houseplant-filled home. It’s a spacial puzzle game where players select and arrange houseplants, rooms, and other objects within their homes to create optimal growing conditions for their plants and make a cozy, inviting interior space.

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