Just a few weeks left until Christmas Day – amazing how fast time goes! Have you shopped for your pet or for the pet-lover on your list yet?
Every year, various magazines and organizations list the “Best Gifts for Pets and Pet-Lovers.” There’s so much choice! Everything from beds and bowls to toys and treats, as well as the more obscure gifts, like a DNA test or a treat-tossing Wi-fi pet camera. Stocking stuffers include special treats and chews for the pets, and wine bottle stoppers and wine glass charms for the pet-lover.
Let’s look at some gift ideas for your furry friend.
Toys for Dogs
For years, KONG has made the list of top toys for dogs; 2018 is no different. The classic rubber chew toy continues to rank highly. Peanut butter and small treats entice dogs to play and chew – and receive a tasty reward for not chewing on furniture or shoes!
KONG also makes knotted toys and squeaker toys, including tennis balls, which can also be used as chews or to play fetch.
Nylabone is another classic and useful toy. Not only do dogs enjoy the chewing but they enjoy dental benefits, too. Non-edible chew toys are purportedly safe, however, at times large portions can be swallowed; that creates an emergency situation. Therefore, always supervise your dog with such toys.
Toys for Cats
KONG also creates toys for cats. A variety of choices allows you to find the purr-fect plaything for your feline friend. From plush to teaser toys, your kitty will find hours of enjoyment with these colorful and entertaining objects.
Catnip toys have been popular for decades. Often inexpensive, these enticing interactives come in a variety of shapes and styles. You can even create DIY catnip-filled projects. These also make great stocking-stuffers for your pet.
How about the animal-lover on your list?
Gifts for the Pet-Lover
Do you have a dog or cat-lover on your Christmas list? How about giving special socks? Maybe tumblers, mugs, or wine glasses (see ideas here: https://www.uncommongoods.com/fun/pets?view=all). Tea towels and jewelry are other options for the dog and cat people you know.
Books are another good choice, and there are plenty of great ones out there, for both children and adults. Buzzfeed supplies a list of 51 books animal-lovers should read; the list includes classics and children’s books.
My Books Make Great Gifts!
Speaking of, for more than 10 years I’ve written pet books for children and adults. For Christian dog-lovers, I have devotional books. For young readers, I create inspirational stories about dogs and cats that teach valuable life lessons. All of my books are available on Amazon. Some are print-only, a few are Kindle-only, and some come in both formats. You still have time to purchase a book or two and have it arrive before Christmas! And, if you want to “try before you buy,” I offer some free chapters and other giveaways on my website.
Whatever you give to your pet or the animal-lover on your Christmas list this year, may each of you enjoy a merry and blessed holiday!
Below are some websites that can help you find ideas for the pets and animal-lovers on your list!
“The stockings were hung by the chimney with care…” so goes the poem written by Clement Moore called ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. So, the stockings are ready, the Christmas tree stands stately in the living room, and the outdoor lights sparkle with the season. Gift shopping commences, and you don’t want to forget the furry ones in your family. What do you get your beloved cat and/or dog companion?
From toys and treats to beds and trees, there’s a myriad of gift ideas for our pets. Articles made by hand (your own or someone else’s) or typical box-store items… which do we get? Maybe a mix of both. Here are a few gift ideas for your special pet this year:
Whether you make your own gifts for your pets or buy online or in-store, Christmas presents for our pets are fun to give – our beloved dogs and cats often get as excited as young children to receive Christmas presents. Just remember to keep your spending in check (see previous blog post).
For a variety of pet gift ideas at a low cost, read these recently published articles:
Woman’s Day: http://www.womansday.com/life/pet-care/g946/pet-gifts/?slide=2
Town and Country: http://www.townandcountrymag.com/style/tips/g2993/best-pet-gifts/
Are you like me during the holiday season and hang Christmas stockings filled with goodies for your pets? Do you splurge, spoil, and spend hard-earned cash on your animals, especially at this time of year?
Although it’s fun to make our pets feel special, just as we are delighted to enhance all of our loved ones’ holiday, whether it’s kids, grandkids, spouses, or parents, we also need to be wise to not over-indulge. As author, speaker, and radio show host Dave Ramsey says, “You can have a giving spirit without having a negative checking account.”
Here are a few tips for not breaking the bank this Christmas:
People do spend money on their pets. According to the American Pet Products Association, the amount of money people spend on their pets increases every year. In 2015, pet parents spent just over $60 billion (yes, billion with a “b!”) dollars on their animals; the following year, that amount increased to more than $66 billion, and in 2017, the organization predicts pet owners will spend nearly $70 billion dollars. Dogtime reports that $20 billion is spent on Halloween costumes, but Christmas gifts vie for an important role in pet-parent spending as well, averaging $36 per pet in the United States (pet parents in England spend a tad more, about $46 per pet).
There are NUMEROUS pet gift ideas, from Amazon picks to items at the big box stores. Some of the most delightful suggestions I’ve seen are listed/linked below:
In addition to Christmas gifts and everyday items like pet food, medical care for pets is also an expense – and can have a major effect on people’s finances. As we all know, pet care takes a lot of green (or plastic), whether that’s staples like food or for medical care. There are organizations and agencies, in states and nationally, who can help with various pet care costs, from spay/neuter procedures to prescription drugs. The Simple Dollar provides an online guide to these groups; check out your state’s pet organizations and foundations, as well as the national groups, by visiting the website with the article from The Simple Dollar.
Enjoy the holiday season without getting into financial hot water come January! And, if you need extra help with pet care needs, consider the resources listed at The Simple Dollar.
Gayle M. Irwin is a writer and public relations professional who volunteers with various animal rescue groups. She enjoys sharing her books and her passion for pets and the environment with others.