Got a pal who's crazy about her pooch or a friend who can't get enough of felines? Forget the boring package of treats or biscuits -- go for one of these unique, useful and cute gifts. Whether for your own pet or that of a friend, check out these gift ideas for pets, many available for purchase online.
1. First aid
We're often prepared for an emergency involving people, but what about our pets? The Medi+Pet First Aid Kits are designed specifically for animals, using veterinarian-recommended products. The kits come in a deluxe ($53) and standard ($45) size, both of which include a 10-page booklet explaining proper first aid procedures. There is also a travel-size kit ($37) that attaches to your belt for outdoor excursions.
2. Scrapbooking supplies
Give crafty pet lovers a creative outlet that involves their favourite four-legged friend. Scrapbooking Your Pets: 200 Page Designs ($24) is filled with imaginative ideas as well as pages with stamps, machine stitching, ribbon, beads, tiles and zipper pulls, among others.
3. Charitable donations
Make a donation to a charity that helps animals, regionally or globally. Local humane societies are always in need of funds and items such as cat litter and bleach to help run their operations. The Canadian branch of Veterinarians Without Borders works in Canada and around the world to "foster the health of animals, people and the environments that sustain us."
4. Doggy couture
If you already splurge on high-end items for your two-legged friends, why not grab some haute couture for their four-legged friends, as well? Try the Chewnel No.5, Dolce & Grrrbana, Manalo Barknik or Hairy Winston Ring chew toys, $15 to $20.
5. Obedience training
Have a pal with a new pup that just can't seem to get the hang of "sit" and "stay?" Treat the pooch and its owner to dog obedience classes. Courses run about $150 for multiweek sessions, although some providers -- such as the Dog Training That Works school in Toronto -- offer private lessons as well.
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6. Extreme pet preparation
Give the junior pet lover in your life the Extreme Pets Handbook ($12). Lizards, ferrets and frogs, oh my! Find out what it's like to own an extreme pet and how to get parents to let their children bring one into the house.
7. Collar charms
Every special dog or cat needs some bling. Collar charms come in a variety of shapes, sizes and styles. Try a jewel-encrusted crown for your little princess or dog bone for his royal poochness, $15 to 25.
8. Knitting pattern book
Vogue Knitting on the Go: Knits for Pets ($13) offers a variety of projects for needle-wielding pet owners, from toys and collars to carrying cases and dog beds.
9. Spa day
Coddle a cat or pamper a pooch with a day at the spa. Grooming costs $35 and up, depending on the size and fur length of the animal, and will keep their coats glistening for weeks to come. Some spas offer aromatherapy treatments, while others boast all-natural cleansers.
10. Pet portraits
Turn a beloved pet into a classic work of art by sending your furry friend's photo to one of the many artists across the country. Prices start at $375. Check out Pets in Pastel or search for "pet portraits" online.
No matter what gift you choose for a pet lover, the best present for any pet is quality time and attention!
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