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Making Fido’s Holiday Merry: The Ultimate Gift Guide for Your Canine Companion

December 15, 2023

Hey there, North Redington Beach, FL pet parents! Got your holiday shopping list in order? While you’re making that list and checking it twice, don’t forget about the furry MVP in your life: Fido! Wondering what to get for your four-legged friend? We all know that Man’s Best Friend is very fond of toys and treats, but what else do you think would be on your pup’s holiday list? A local North Redington Beach, FL vet offers some suggestions in this article.


Fido’s Wish List


That tail-wagging, cuddle-giving, and ever-adorable companion of yours deserves a little extra something this holiday season. If Fido could pen a Christmas list to Santa Paws, it would probably read something like this: 

  • Bacon
  • Toys
  • Steak
  • Bacon
  • Tennis Balls
  • Bacon
  • More Car Rides
  • Mud Puddles
  • Bacon
  • Chicken
  • Toys

That’s only to be expected. To be fair, toys and treats are always great options. But hey, there are plenty more things to choose from. Rain gear, calming products, or even programmable paw pads can all make ‘pawesome’ gifts for your canine pal. If you have a yard, you may want to get your pup a doghouse, kiddie pool, or sandbox. A subscription box could also make your pup’s tail wag. (Watching him open his monthly doggy delivery might just be as exciting for you as it is for him!)


If your furry pal could work on his petiquette, consider enrolling him in training. It will take time and money now, but it will be well worth it in the long run. This is definitely a gift that keeps on giving.


Beds: The Universal Dog Gift


Making sure that Fido can sleep well is very important. Thin pads just won’t cut it: your pet’s bed should offer both insulation and support. Many people opt for orthopedic beds, especially for bigger or senior dogs. 


Of course, our canine companions also have preferences here. 

Does your furry best friend stamp down his bedding before he gets comfy? He may like a beanbag bed, which will let him arrange his sleeping spot exactly the way he likes it. If your canine pal tends to stretch out, he may just want a plain bed, as raised edges may cramp his stretch-all-the-way-out style. Pooches with thin fur may appreciate a heated or thermal bed, whereas small dogs and nervous pups often like the added feeling of security that beds with raised edges provide. Dogs with thick fur may enjoy cooling beds to help them cope with that Florida heat.

Stocking Stuffers


Treats are a no-brainer, but why not throw in some grooming supplies like paw balm or doggy dental care products? Your pup might not jump for joy over things like dental chews or paw balm, but he will appreciate having smooth paw pads and healthy teeth. 


Choosing Gifts for Active Pooches


Got a furry bundle of energy on your hands? Consider automatic ball launchers or other fun toys that will keep Fido active and entertained.


GPS-enabled tags are a modern option, and one product we’re thrilled to see on the market. These allow those of you with pups that are prone to bolting to keep up with your squirrel-chasing runaways. 


Gear is also a good choice. Move over, basic leash and collar! Harnesses are in, offering more comfort and easier breathing for your barking buddy. If you often walk Fido at night, take advantage of holiday sales and pick up a leash with a built-in flashlight. If you and your canine pal enjoy hiking or going to some of our beautiful parks, look for a harness that will allow your pup to carry some of his own things. Another great gift for the dog on the go? A water bottle with an attached dispenser.


Holiday Presents For Puppies


Ah, the adorable puppy phase—or, as some call it, the chewy tornado stage. Sturdy toys like Kongs are great options for pets that are going through that gnaw-on-everything phase. 

Safety tip: avoid rawhide, especially for strong chewers. Dogs can break off pieces of rawhide. That’s not only a serious choking risk, there’s also a chance of gastrointestinal injuries or blockages if the piece is swallowed. Ask your North Redington Beach, FL veterinarian for more information.

Another word to the wise for people celebrating the holiday with puppies? Petproofing is a must. This is particularly important around the holidays, as so many decorations are dangerous to dogs. Keep anything small, sharp, toxic, or fragile well out of paws’ reach. That includes things like small ornaments, manger pieces, many gifts, small figures and decorations, tinsel, string, ribbon, and light strands. Many seasonal plants, such as holly, ivy, and mistletoe, are also unsafe. 

Tips For Choosing Safe Dog Toys


Always put your dog’s safety first. Steer clear of anything with small parts and/or sharp edges. Opt for products made in North America to ensure quality and avoid harmful substances like PVC or BPA. Getting a toy with bright colors? Check for non-toxic dyes. 

You’ll of course need to consider Fido’s size, age, and breed. A stocking full of tennis balls may be a great option for a Golden Retriever, but won’t get much use from a Pomeranian. 

Your pup’s tastes will also change over time. Puppies need lots of chew toys, as well as toys that keep them active and entertained. A senior, however, may prefer something that’s soft on his mouth, or perhaps a puzzle toy to offer stimulation.

Your dog’s personality also factors in. Some toys are fine for some pups, but unsafe for others. For instance, stuffed animals are very popular with our four-legged friends. Many dogs play with them without issue. Others are squeaker assassins, who make a point to remove and try to eat the squeaker. That is definitely not safe for Man’s Best Friend to consume. 

It’s also worth pointing out that stuffed animals made for children are not safe for dogs. These often have small parts, like plastic eyes, which are choking hazards. Those that sing, dance, or light up may also contain batteries, which are another safety risk. Ask your North Redington Beach, FL vet for more information on choosing safe treats for your furry buddy. 

Holiday Gifts For Other People’s Dogs


Don’t forget Fido’s four-legged squad! If your friends and family members have dogs of their own, send those pooches something small. One good option is to make homemade treats. You’ll find all sorts of recipes online. Just stick with safe ingredients. You can also gift your pup’s pals some store-bought snacks, or perhaps a pet store gift card, so they can go pick out their own toys. Feeling charitable? Consider making a donation to an animal rescue, to help out all of the sweet dogs that don’t have homes of their own. 


Fido’s Number One Request: Time With You

Above all, your furry pal just wants your company! This can be a stressful time for pets. All the commotion, decorations, events, travel, and schedule changes can be quite a lot for Fido to cope with. Be sure to carve out some quiet quality time with your furry best friend. Remember to snap some cute photos of your pooch playing with his new things!

Posted in Dog Care