Need the perfect gift for your pet loving friends this holiday? Custom made or personalized gifts are always appreciated.
Some of my favorites are well-made soft dog and cat toys, pillows, bandannas, collars, candles, even custom phone cases are available . Many of these items can be monogrammed with the pet’s name or customized with a photo or artistic likeness of a pet pal.
Specialized pet retailers, such as chewy.com, have plenty of items to choose from, even some hi-tech devices like wi-fi cameras and treat dispensers. Among gifts for someone who has to leave pets at home and want to know they are happy and safe are high-tech devices with night vision and speaker capabilities.
Books about dogs and cats and the people who love them are always appreciated.
Some of my favorites are "Catification: Designing a Happy and Stylish Home for Your Cat (and You!)" by Jackson Galaxy, "A Gift from Bob: How a Street Cat Helped One Man Learn The Meaning of Christmas" by James Bowen and "The World According to Bob: The Further Adventures of One Man and His Street-wise Cat" also by Bowen.
And there also is "Cesar Millan’s Short Guide to a Happy Dog: 98 Essential Tips and Techniques" and and his "Be the Pack Leader: Use Cesar’s Way to Transform Your Dog…and Your Life."
And for your crafty cat friends there's is "Cat Castles: 20 Cardboard Habitats You Can Build Yourself" by Carin Oliver.
How about cooking up some yummy treats for a pet to put under the tree? You can find dozens of delicious recipes for food for pets in Arden Moore’s cookbook "Real Food for Dogs." Moore is an expert on dogs and cats and host of a show on Pet Life Radio.
Arden has shared the following recipe from her cookbook.
Marvelous Mutt Meatballs – Yum!
- 1 pound of lean ground beef or sirloin
- 2/3 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 1 large carrot, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup bread crumbs
- 1 egg, whisked
- 6 tablespoons tomato paste (low-sodium)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Combine all the ingredients in a medium-sized bowl.
3. Scoop out by the spoonful and roll into mini-sized meatballs.
4. Place the meatballs on a cookie sheet with non-fat cooking spray.
5. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
6. Cool before service and store the extra in a container with a lid in the refrigerator.
Tamra Bolton is a freelance writer and photographer based in East Texas.