Responsible breeders cringe when people call and say they would like a puppy for Christmas. Pets are a huge responsibility and so much goes into choosing the right puppy, the right breed, and establishing who is responsible for what activities (feeding, walking, poop scooping! etc) and attempting to "surprise" someone with a puppy precludes these conversations.
Even if these conversations have already taken place and it is established who is responsible for what- Christmas time is very busy with family, company, cooking, decorating- and potty training the puppy or making sure the puppy is not chewing on the Christmas lights is not usually the highest priority. For these reasons, bringing a new puppy home AFTER Christmas is the best option.
Here are my recommendations for how to give pets as Christmas presents.
- Accessories make GREAT gifts. They need to be purchased anyway, so you can accomplish two things at once. Crate, collar, leash, bowls, toys, beds, brushes, nail trimmers, treats, baby gate (not in picture) all provide endless unwrapping opportunities for everyone in the family and make it clear that the new pet will be everyone's responsibility.
- The Anticipation that unwrapping the accessories creates is even more exciting than "unwrapping" a pet anyway.
- shopping for pet supplies is fun.
- It is very clear what the "Real" gift will be-
- A picture of a dog (or cat) with a note saying, "this gift card is good for one..... (puppy, dog, cat, whatever) can be the "final clue".
- If the conversation of "what breed, what color, what sex" has not taken place, the picture will foster this conversation and good choices will result. Everyone will win.
When the hustle and bustle of the Holiday is over- then the puppy can come home and be the center of attention.