I consider myself a great gifter, but it took me years to stop buying things that I wanted for others, and to instead buy things that they would love. IMHO, you can’t put a price tag on a gift that’s been crafted with a specific person’s wants and needs in mind.
These are some of the thoughtful and unexpected gifts I’ve given or received this season:
- “Animals Inside” Emergency Sticker, via ASPCA.org (received)
These stickers alert responders to the presence of animals in your home, and provide a quick way to show your contact information.
Special why? Because I’m a neurotic dog parent who believes you can never be too prepared. There have been too many natural disasters of late for my taste!
- Tag Light, via MOMA.org (given)
This is the little-light-that-could, invaluable for late night dog walks.
Trust me, you can only watch your friends fumble around in the dark for so long while they strive to be model citizens. Time to put them out of their distress!
- Engraved Dog Treat Glass Jar, via GiftsforYouNow.com (received)
Since I don’t leave bags of treats out as part of my No Accessible Food policy, this personalized glass container does the trick.
- Holiday Gift Donation in a pet’s honor, via HumaneSociety.org (given)
Let’s face it, if you know someone who values animal welfare above much else, you can’t get any better than this kind of gift. Ideally, if you can ferret out the information, you can select your friend’s animal charity of choice.
There is also the gift of time, such as the organizations and individuals who helped reunite lost animals with their owners after Hurricane Sandy or the friends who offered to dog or cat sit in a pinch, or the people who helped spread the word about animals in need of being adopted.
Pet lovers: Which are the best gifts you’ve given or received?
My Favorite Pet Gifts Under $25 (for gifts that don’t go out of style)