Whether your dogs have been “naughty” or “nice” this year, there’s no better time than
Christmas to show them how much they mean to you. From the tangible to the intangible,
consider celebrating the legendary Twelve Days of Christmas by wrapping some of these
suggestions in bright ribbons of love and “gifting” your dog with them:
1. Get your dog a large, personalized dog treat jar. Fashioned from clear glass, his name
will be emblazoned across the front in glittering letters and then filled with especially
tempting and delectable holiday treats.
2. Sweeten your conversation with “baby talk.” Since studies show that dogs understand
human language better than once thought, using a high-pitched voice coupled with words
your own dog recognizes will be welcome music to his most receptive ears.
3. Get your dog an oversized and especially soft blanket featuring his photo front and
center. Choose one in a color that complements his preferred doggy bed and have your
favorite photo of him printed on it.
4. Gaze deeply into your dog’s eyes. One way of expressing your love is through direct eye
contact. Take a moment, speak softly, pet him gently and stare into his eyes. Try raising
your eyebrows -- preferably the left one – and he’ll recognize this as an obvious display of
5. Get your dog an especially hardy KONG that’s shaped like a small tire. Ideal for rousing
games of fetch and tug-o-war, they’re guaranteed to outlast even the strongest chewer.
6. Rub his ears. Rather than patting your pup on the top of his head, rub him gently behind
his ears and watch his reaction. In all likelihood, he’ll melt into a puddle of pure doggy
bliss because rubbing a dog’s ears stimulates the release of endorphins, the hormones that
both relieve pain and induce pleasure.
7. Get your dog a DNA test. Are you curious about your pup’s ancestry? Eager to know if
he’s a purebred or a marvelous mixture of two or more breeds? All it requires is this
simple test and all will be revealed.
8. Lean on your dog. Think of the many times your dog has pressed up against your legs or
leaned into you while you were sitting together. Seen as one of the ways that dogs seek out
affection – their version of a hug – return the sentiment and “hug” your dog back by
leaning into him.
9. Get your dog a gift basket of bacon flavored dog chews. While real bacon is a no-no, this
“sense-ational” substitute should keep his taste buds tingling and his palette satisfied all
10. Cuddle your dog.