2020 has been a bad year for just about everyone, but not for your dog. These past few months, you've been home more than ever before, you're always down for a soothing snuggle, and you insist on going on walks a zillion times a day just to have something to do. When the world gets crazy, the unconditional support and love you get from your doggy BFF is sometimes the only thing that keeps you going—and he or she deserves something special in return, or for something special to be created in his or her honor. Maybe it's your dog's birthday, maybe it's the anniversary of the day you got them, maybe it's just a random Tuesday—whatever the occasion, they deserves the best. My own dog and I have taken the time to test-drive almost all of the products on this list (yes, my job is very hard; yes, my dog is very spoiled), and so, please allow us to present: The ultimate gift guide for dogs and dog parents that dogs will love and dog parents will sob over. Bonus: They're great for Instagram.
Originally launched on Kickstarter, where it was fully funded in the space of a single day, the Wickedbone is an interactive dog toy that plays with your pup when you can't. It's a smart robot toy—it jumps away when your pup chases after it, and "teases" your dog if he or she stops playing with it. It actually has twelve different responsive modes (for moods like "bored," "tickled," "mad," and so on), so it'll act in line with how your dog is feeling that day.
Custom pet portraits can run expensive—I am an expert on few things, but I have spent hours researching those—but West & Willow sells a whole line of chic merch with your pet's face on it, and (surprise!) it's all relatively affordable. This iPhone case, which comes complete with a custom illustration of your canine BFF, is my personal fave.
Wild One's Bolt Bite is billed as "the ultimate chew toy for dogs." You can put little treats into each end, or use it as part of a game of fetch, plus the middle has a reinforced rubber center so your dog can't tear it apart. Bonus: It's BPA-free and dishwasher-friendly.
Ever wished you had access to a plush, cozy cave where you could go and hide when the world got too much? Well, you can't—but you can provide that for your pup. Bonus: It's really, really cute.
Whatever makes your dog anxious—fireworks, your leaving for work, a big move—you can ease his or her fear with this self-warming dog toy with a heartbeat (no, I'm not kidding). These features mimic a real-life cuddle with your dog's mom, giving your pup the sense that they're being safely snuggled, no matter what's going on around them.
What piece of artwork could be so beguiling, so dazzling, as a custom portrait of your dog in a setting and outfit of your choosing? Absolutely none.
Oh, this is so cute. The lightweight, Scrabble-inspired tile attaches neatly onto your dog's collar. Every letter of the alphabet is available.
London-based illustrator Kitty uses watercolors and pencil to create a custom portrait of your pup, taking care to highlight the features you love most. Think those old-fashioned watercolor portraits of aristocratic families—but for your canine best bud. You'll want to frame this and hang it in your home for years (okay, decades) to come.
I won't lie to you: I buy my dog a lot of toys. None have lasted as long, or are so beloved, as my pup's Fluff & Tuff toys—this unicorn and its brother the blue dinosaur are his constant companions. I'm not kidding: He brings both of them into bed with us every freaking night, and we have to put them through the washer and dryer every few weeks. In spite of this, they've held up for months now, plus they're filled with high-quality padding that are held to the same non-toxic standards as children's toys.
This isn't just any sweater with a dog's face on it. Thanks to new brand Sweater Hound, this is a custom-knitted, unisex sweater with your dog's face on it—and it makes a great custom Christmas present for the greatest dog mom (or dad) you know.
These bones look and feel like a normal ball toy—but (plot twist!) they're scented, with flavors ranging from cheese and peanut butter to beef and chicken. The smell is embedded in the fiber of the toy (don't ask me how they do this), so it never goes away and never, ever becomes boring.
This is fashion and function, the ultimate in a painfully cute gift that they'll actually use. Zoo Snoods makes snoods and sweaters for dogs that a) keep them warm in the winter and b) are painfully cute. My favorite is the lion snood.
I can vouch for this one: My dog spends all day on his La-Z-Boy bed, and it's not like he doesn't have options (he has two other dog beds, a big cozy sofa, and, of course, my own bed). Thanks to my dog cam (more on that later), I can watch him sleep the day away on this sofa. Bonus: It'll look gorgeous in your apartment.
You might already be familiar with DL1961, the sustainable, Meghan Markle-loved denim brand that prides itself on changing the way denim is created. Its chic jeans retail at $150-plus, but you can get a miniature version for your dog for a third of that. (Or, you know, buy one for yourself and a matching one for your dog. You do you!)
Scripted Fragrance makes a candle for just about every major breed of dog, including "service dog" (it's so cute, I nearly cried). And while some candles can be dangerous for your dog, these ones are made of dog-safe soy wax. Plus, they're vegan, cruelty-free, dye-free, additive-free, preservative-free, petroleum-free, and phthalate-free.
This sweet and affordable dog print, personalized by breed, bed color, and name, comes in a variety of sizes and is highly reviewed on Etsy.
When it comes to keeping your dog happily occupied for hours at a time, nobody does it like KONG. The cult-favorite dog brand—you probably have at least one of its items already—recently launched a subscription box, which boasts treats, toys, recipes, and of course a KONG Classic. Perfect for high-energy pups who love a good training toy and deserve a regular dose of the best.
Every dog owner knows that the key to a well-trained dog—well, a lightly to medium-trained dog, in my case—is a treat jar. This one will look adorable on your kitchen counter, to boot.
If you adopted your pup, this is perfect for you. Each leash comes with an adorable "Found" tag to celebrate adoption, and each tag is individually numbered and stamped. Plus, Found My Animal, which sells this leash through e-comm platform Pawp, actively supports and promotes animal adoption.
Wufers makes gorgeous, Instagram-friendly cookies for your dog that look cute and taste better. This advent calendar will make December your dog's all-time favorite month.
Whom specializes in dog beds that double as sincerely gorgeous pieces of furniture. For a little dog who likes to be beside you at all times, get this sweet raised pet bed (and for a bigger dog, it comes in three sizes!).
I don't have anything to add about these socks. The image of this exquisite creation does all the talking for me. The perfect Christmas present, or the perfect Christmas present?
If you or someone you know is welcoming a new dog into the family, this is the box for them. It's everything a new pet owner needs: sensitive-skin shampoo, toys, and the classic jerky sticks my dog literally cannot get enough of.
If you crate train your pup—or are in the midst of it and struggling (been there!)—this is the treat for you. This training tool is designed to go inside a training crate (Diggs has those too) to keep your dog happy and busy while in there, making crate time an enjoyable experience instead of something they dread. You can freeze it, cover it in peanut butter, squeeze treats inside the holes...
Your dog deserves the world and then some. He or she also deserves a dog carrier with their name embroidered on it. (A note: It only fits dogs under 20lb.)
Okay, I know I lost you at "squeak," but hear me out: This isn't your grandmother's (dog's) squeaky toy. It's engineered to emit a specific, quiet-ish squeak that dogs' ears love, and the cute seal toy squeaks and jumps in response to all kind of motion—shaking, dropping, picking up, you name it. It's also much more affordable than most interactive dog toys.
You can't have enough face masks right now, so match with your dog with one of Furtees' adorable bandanna and mask sets.
Yes, Lilly Pulitzer makes dog pajamas now—and if you're so inclined, you can get matching pajamas for your whole family.
An easy way to make your dog's future bathtimes less traumatic for everyone: Get a shower system with a dog-friendly attachment. It's like your regular shower, but has a baby shower head for your pup so he or she doesn't have to stand sadly under a four-foot-high waterfall of water. The wand also has removable "finger" bristles you can use to deep-clean your dog's fur.
Know someone who needs some quality time with their pup? (Maybe that person is you?) Give the gift of relaxation in a remote, dog-friendly location with Getaway—a new company that sends you to cozy cabins a couple of hours from your hometown that are nestled in nature (with your dog, of course) for a couple of ultra-relaxing days. Your pup will love the rural surroundings, and you'll finally be able to unplug.