Gift Guide: The Best Gifts for Dog Parents


Amanda Creasey

Last updated Dec. 5, 2017

What This Article Covers

The Black Friday shopping frenzy has passed and Christmas is just around the corner. You've got the perfect toy for your nephew, the latest gadget for your dad, and a few new squeaky toys and treats for Fido. But what to get for Fido's human parents...? Whether you're a pet parent or not, chances are, someone on your buy-for list is--and Scout has tons of good gift-giving ideas to share with you, from protective seat covers for a dog parent's car, to pet cameras that can help Rufus's parents keep tabs on him during the work day, to pet pedometers for those pet parents who love to run, walk, or hike with their fur baby.

For Drives with Doggy

Most pet parents love to take their dogs for a drive, be it to a nearby dog park for a play date with furry friends, a wooded trail for a hike through the trees, or a longer road trip. If a dog is your friend's co-pilot on the road, consider gifting her with dog car seat covers, like the one below from Amazon. This thoughtful and practical gift is not only comfortable for Clifford, but can help keep his human parents' car cleaner--safe from mud, sand, or dog hair.

For Long Days Apart

Many dog parents loathe that moment in their day when it's time to kiss Fido goodbye for eight to ten hours and head to work. For pet parents who would love to check in on their beloved fur baby during the work day but live too far away stop home during lunch, or even for those away on a trip, a petcam would make a great gift. These nifty little gadgets allow a parent to take a peek at their beloved dog anytime they want. Some will even give your friend's dog a treat and let your friend talk to her canine companion!

For the technologically challenged pet parents who detest leaving her dog during the day, another option might be a gift card to a doggy daycare or for a pet walking service. Though neither will allow your friend to directly check on her pooch, some services will send updates. Plus, your friend will have peace of mind knowing her dog is getting a little midday walk, play time, or visitor.

For Furry Fitness Friends

Many dog parents are very active, relishing physical fitness with their pet, be it through walking, hiking, fetch, or agility classes. If someone on your gift-giving list has an energetic pup to play with, a puppy pedometer to track her fur baby's steps and activity level, activewear to don out on walks or hikes together, or agility equipment to stimulate teamwork, coordination, and physical activity, would all be optimal gifts.

If your friend loves to keep track of his daily step count, activity level, nutrition, or exercises, he might also love to track his pet's. Consider giving him a pedometer designed especially for his dog.

If your friend wouldn't trade time with her dog relaxing at home, hitting the pavement, or doing "doga", for heading to the movies, a party, or a dinner date, then this cute tank top--or one like--would make a perfect gift.

If the pet parent on your list is looking to try something new--or continue training--with her pup, agility equipment might be the perfect gift. Not only does it entail walking and running on both the pet parent's and her dog's part, but it also fosters bonding and cooperation, stimulating your friend's dog's mind and body. All kinds of agility equipment exist--from teeters to platforms to jumps to tunnels.

For Fashionistas

If the dog lovers on your list like to dress to impress or use clothing as a way to express themselves, help them use their clothing to express their dedication to their dog. These dog socks available on Etsy make a great stocking stuffer. The seller will even personalize the socks to depict your friend's own dog! Also available on Etsy is this hilarious Dog Father shirt, perfect for the doggy daddy on your list, and customizable by breed.

If the dog mom on your list loves to accessorize, the jewelry above could make an excellent gift. The best friend necklace doubles as a gift for Fido.

The above shirt is practical and comfortable--perfect for any dog mom to showcase her love for her pet, whether the two are relaxing at home, socializing at the dog park, or walking around the neighborhood.

Safety First

Parents' first priority is always the safety of their children, and pet parents are no exception. From the potential of getting lost to the potential for being hard to see out for a walk in the dark, the below products can help keep any pet parent's dog that much safer.

Just "Fur" Fun

For the dog mom or dad who already has it all, these just-for-fun gifts are unique and amusing, and will make great surprises. 

These fun stickers can be customized to feature your friend's own dog! Any dog parent will love sporting their dog's face everywhere they go. To that same end, these breed-specific car decals available on Etsy also make appropriate gifts for any dog parents.

For Canine Cooking

If the dog parent on your list loves to cook for the humans in his life, imagine how much he will enjoy creating delicious meals and treats for his fur baby. 

If the dog lover in your life loves to bake but is new to the culinary arts, this canine cake mix might be just the thing. It even comes with frosting mix! If, on the other hand, the pet parent you know is a whiz in the kitchen, try gifting him with one of these cookbooks, sure to please your human friend and his dog.

If the dog lover on your gift list isn't much for cooking, but is concerned with his dog's diet, consider subscribing to a dog food delivery service as a practical, helpful gift. Many of these companies offer customizable options for any specific dietary needs your friend's dog might have, some even offering raw diets or vegan diets.

For Book Worms

If snuggling on the couch with a good book and man's best friend is a favorite activity for the fur-baby parent on your to-buy-for list, consider these touching, dog-focused books.

Home Is Where the Dog Is

Ask any dog parents and they're likely to say their dog is the family member who really makes their home complete. To help make their dog-centered home even dog-friendlier, consider this customized dog pillow on Etsy. Any pet parent would love to snuggle with a soft pillow bearing the likeness of his or her fur baby. Plus, it will look almost as adorable on the couch or armchair as your friend's actual pet. 

Along the same vein, some sellers on Etsy offer customizable stuffed animals--designed to resemble your friend's own, adorable dog. What pet parent wouldn't love a stuffed animal modeled after the cutest canine in the world?

If your pet-parent loved one isn't as cuddly as her dog, consider commissioning a portrait of her pet. When displayed on a wall, this keepsake is personal, touching, and showcases the special place your friend's dog holds in her heart.

If your dog-loving friend has a unique sense of humor, try these funny, dog-scented candles on Etsy. They are sure to put a smile on the face and a laugh in the heart of any dog-lover (though not as big a smile or as hearty a laugh as his dog's wagging tail does!).

For the Generous 

If the pet parents on your list love to help animals in need, consider making a donation to an animal welfare organization in their name. This can also make an excellent gift to make in honor of a friend's deceased pet.

Dog Moms and Dads

While the pet parents on your list are likely to love any gift you give them, celebrating their love for their dog is one of the best gifts you can give. If they love their dog, they are sure to love any present that expresses, supports, or honors the unconditional, one-of-a-kind bond they share with their pup.