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When making a list of gifts to get, one shouldn't forget to include a yummy treat or accessory for their favorite pet.

The holiday season is about being with loved ones, and those include our furry friends.

People are always holiday shopping for their parents, siblings, extended family members and friends. However, some may forget to shop for one’s pet. Here are some gift ideas for dogs or cats.

Toys

Toys are a classic go-to present for a dog or cat. Dogs love being surprised with something new to chew on, and cats enjoy trying to paw at feathers. There are also subscription boxes such as  Chewy or Barkbox that’ll send a care package of treats and toys for one’s dog. While squeaky toys are a good choice for dogs, a popular toy is the hide-and-seek puzzle. It’s a small, stuffed box with a cutout, and the dog has to try to get the stuffed animals out. They come in a variety of themes and can be found anywhere one can purchase dog toys. Another smart toy would be a treat obstacle ball. With a treat obstacle ball, one can place food into the ball, and the dog rolls it around until they get it out. 

For cats, there are several forms of scratch toys. There’s the classic scratch tower, which isn’t always cheap, but one can buy small versions in different shapes, and it helps with their claws. Cat owners can also get a new teaser toy, whether it’s a feather on a stick or a small laser pointer. It might be a little upsetting to the cat, but it’s still a source of exercise and can be amusing for the owner. For those looking to help small businesses, The Lady Jane and some farmers market booths might have a good selection of cat toys.

Pet fashion

Not every animal likes to dress up, but buying pet-friendly clothing would be perfect for pets who have a passion for fashion. One can purchase clothes from PetSmart, Petco or find things on different Etsy stores. Since it’s the holiday season, pet stores are selling Christmas sweaters, tops and costumes along with everyday outfits. For those who want to see their pets ready for game day, look into buying JMU-themed pet gear so one can share the school spirit with their pet. Also, many companies make clothing lines for people who want to match their pet. 

If one’s dog or cat gets irritated with clothes, try looking for a new collar. Some stores offer simple patterns like stripes or something more festive for the holiday season. Similar to clothing, JMU makes dog collars so one’s pet can cheer for the Dukes anytime.

 

Treats 

Every pet loves a good treat any time during the day, so a bag of homemade treats would be perfect. There are several recipes to follow on Pinterest as well as on other websites like DIY Network. One can make biscuits with peanut butter for their dog or fish-flavored goodies for a cat. 

If one isn’t a fan of cooking or baking, any pet will still be excited to see a box of their favorite treats on Christmas morning. Plus, pet stores sometimes will have a treat buffet where pet owners can choose from different types of treats for their pets to try. Another treat option would be a treat-based subscription box like Real Dog.

Bedding and hangout locations

Dogs and cats often love to lounge around the house after a long day of playing. Instead of one’s furry friend laying on the living room floor, perhaps investing in a cute and comfortable bed would be worth it. Pet stores offer bedding for cats and dogs of all breeds. They also come in different shapes like a flat pillow or a bed with a circular wall.

Cat owners can also choose between a cat bed or hut. This way, cats can either have a bed or a small hideout. Cat beds also vary in sizes, so people can select from various options. The giant obstacle courses and cat condos might seem expensive, but there are some cheap options on websites such as Amazon.

Dining essentials

A big pet necessity is a bowl for their food and water. Usually, owners pick one out the day they adopt their pet and stick with it for a long time. However, it might get dirty to the point where scrubbing hard won’t even help. A new food bowl would work as a good gift for pets because it’s something they use every day. Also, one can choose a bowl that might fit the aesthetics of the room their pet eats in.

Along with a bowl, having a fun new placemat would be a good addition. With a placemat, it’ll prevent the bowls from scratching the floor, food from being left on the floor or if one’s pet spills water after taking a drink. As a gift, one can select a fun placemat with wacky designs, a cute picture or something that matches their pet’s bowl.

The holidays are about giving to the ones we love. While one’s walking around or searching online for the perfect gifts, they should make sure to add the family pet to the list of relatives.

 

Contact Gracie Brogowski at brogowsx@dukes.jmu.edu. For more on the culture, arts and lifestyle of the JMU and Harrisonburg communities, follow the culture desk on Instagram and Twitter @Breeze_Culture.