Choosing Fido’s Holiday Gifts

The holiday season is officially here! Have you been shopping for your dog? Make sure you pick up something for Fido! Your canine buddy deserves something special for all the love, laughter, tail wags, and affection he offers! We know that Man’s Best Friend is very fond of toys and treats, but what else do you think your pup would like this holiday season? This article offers some great suggestions for dogs’ holiday gifts from a local Marquette, MI vet.


Active Dog Gifts


Do you have a bouncing ball of fur on your hands? Choose toys and gifts that will keep Fido busy and entertained. Automatic ball launchers are a great choice for dogs who love to chase tennis balls. Just make sure that the balls are the right size for your pet. Large breeds may choke on balls meant for smaller dogs.


Gifts For The Doggo On The Go


Some of our canine buddies are hardwired for adventure, and just can’t help running off after, well, anything. This can be challenging for owners. It’s also quite dangerous. Millions of dogs are reported missing each year. Training, microchipping, leashes, and fences are all crucial. However, GPS-enabled tags may be a good gift. These can help you keep track of your furry runaway, whether he’s chasing squirrels in the neighbor’s yard or checking out what’s happening down the street.


Pet products have made significant advancements from the traditional leash and collar. Nowadays, harnesses are the preferred option for our furry companions, due to their added comfort and ability to provide control without restricting your pet’s breathing.


For those who often walk their dogs in the dark, snag a leash with an integrated flashlight during holiday sales. And if you like to go on hikes with your canine buddy, consider investing in a harness that enables Fido to carry some of his gear. Additionally, a water bottle equipped with a dispenser would be an excellent present for any active dog.


Holiday Gifts For Nervous Dogs 


Do you have a scaredy dog? Weighted shirts or other calming products, may help your furry best friend cope with his nerves. You can also look at things like soothing beds, or offer soft plushie toys. (Tip: only offer plushies made specifically for dogs.)


Gifts For Puppies


Our canine pals never stop being charming, but they really are ridiculously cute as puppies. Little Fido is basically a chewing machine during that charming toddler stage! Look for sturdy toys that can withstand all that abuse. Kong toys are great choices, but there are also other options. Obedience training, crates, and toys are also safe bets. Ask your Marquette, MI vet for tips on choosing safe toys.


A Classic Dog Gift: A New Bed


It’s very important for Fido to be able to sleep comfortably. A thin pad won’t protect Fido’s bones and joints from cold floors, and won’t offer much support as he’s dreaming of bacon. The standard nowadays is orthopedic beds, especially for larger puppies and seniors. However, dogs have their own preferences when it comes to beds.


Does Fido smoosh his bed down? Your pup may like a beanbag bed, which will allow him to arrange his sleeping spot exactly how he likes. If your canine pal stretches out, he may just want a plain bed, as raised edges may cramp his stretch-all-the-way-out napping style. Heated or thermal beds may be preferable for dogs with thin fur, while beds with raised edges can provide a sense of security for nervous pups and small dogs.


Gifts For Any Dog


There is no doubt that chews and treats make great stocking stuffers. You can also add grooming supplies to your pup’s stocking. (Fido may not be too thrilled about a tube of paw balm, but he will appreciate having smooth paw pads instead of rough, cracked skin.) Dental treats and chews are also good options. Ask your Marquette, MI vet for recommendations on dental products and brushes as well.


Of course, Santa Paws has a few more ideas up his jolly red sleeves. For instance, if you have a yard, your pet might also like a doghouse. Subscription boxes, or pupscription boxes, are another great option. Fido will receive a box of goodies every month. Watching him open it may be just as entertaining for you as it is for him!


How Do I Choose Safe Gifts For My Dog? 


When making purchases for your furry friend, always prioritize Fido’s safety. Steer clear of products with small parts or sharp edges. We also recommend that you check the label before purchasing anything. Opt for items manufactured in North America. Overseas products may not meet the same safety standards. In fact, studies have revealed the presence of harmful substances such as PVC, BPA, chromium, bromine, and phthalates in these products. Additionally, keep in mind that brightly-colored items may contain dyes, although most pet product companies use non-toxic options. Ask your Marquette, MI vet for more information.


You should also be careful with rawhide. Pups that chew voraciously can break off pieces, and even swallow them. This is a huge choking hazard!  Your pooch could also get serious gastrointestinal injuries or blockages from ingesting the pieces. Consult your Marquette, MI vet for more information.


Things To Consider When Choosing Dog Gifts


In choosing gifts for Fido, there are several things to keep in mind. A stocking full of tennis balls is a great idea for a Golden Retriever, but won’t be much fun for a Pomeranian. Your canine buddy’s tastes will also change over time. Puppies need lots of chew toys, as well as playthings that keep them active and entertained. A senior, on the other hand, may prefer something that’s soft on his mouth, or perhaps a puzzle toy to provide mental stimulation.


Your dog’s personality should also play a role here. Some toys are fine for some pups, but unsafe for others. For instance, stuffed animals are popular with many dogs. Some pooches can play with these without any problems. Others immediately remove the squeaker and attempt to eat it, which is definitely not safe for them to consume. Kids’ stuffed animals can also be dangerous, as they may have small parts, like plastic ‘eyes’ or other accessories. Opt for sturdy plushies, and only give Fido ones that were made specifically for Man’s Best Friend.


Gifts For Dog Lovers This Holiday Season


Send a small gift to Fido’s buddies if you have friends and family who have their own pets. Homemade dog treats can make a great gift for our canine pals! You can also offer store-bought snacks, of course. Gift cards to pet stores are also a good idea. Another option is to consider making a donation to an animal rescue in the name of a loved one or perhaps their animal companion.


Fido’s Number One Request: Time With You 


Our faithful canine friends become very, very attached to their humans. Fido really just wants to hang out with you! Take some time to spend quietly with your furry friend. Remember to take some cute photos of your pup playing with his new toys!

All of us here at Animal Medical Center of Bel Air, your local Marquette, MI pet hospital, wish you and your families a safe and happy holiday season. Please feel free to reach out if ever we can be of assistance!

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