Home » Blog » Adoption » Christmas Puppy – Are They A Good Gift?

Christmas Puppy – Are They A Good Gift?

This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

You’ve seen it before maybe in a commercial or in a clever magazine advertisement with the image of a Christmas puppy in the stocking. It’s irresistible! How can anyone pass up the chance to purchase a Christmas Puppy for their loved one on the twenty-fifth of December?  The holidays just wouldn’t be right without your rollie pollie little Christmas puppy playing with empty gift wrappings and ribbons…[fade from dream sequence back into reality]

Christmas Puppy?

While all sounds wonderful in the thoughts and images of a new puppy for Christmas I have to put my foot down and say “DON’T DO IT!”

I’m not going to look up the statistics right now, but I’m willing to wager that a number of these so-called Christmas Puppies end up in animal shelters anywhere from a few weeks to a few months later.

Why Not?

Let me start off by saying a puppy is a lot of a work…A LOT OF WORK…

I get tons of emails at this site saying

I just got a new puppy:

  • How do I get him to stop crying/barking/howling?
  • How do I get him to stop peeing/pooping in the house?
  • How do I get him to stop biting/mouthing?
  • How do I get him crate trained?
  • How do I get him to stop chewing my valuables?
  • How do I…

The list goes on and on.  I admit that puppies are very cute.  They seem like they would make a great Christmas gift, but just say NO!

Puppy As A Gift

Here’s how I’d go about getting a puppy as a gift.

  • I like surprises so I’d just plan a day with my girlfriend and behind the scenes I’d set up an appointment(s) with a puppy rescue(s).  You can find local puppy rescues by searching through the Petfinder.com website.  We volunteer with a great puppy rescue called Cuddly Canines if you live in the Orange County, California area.
  • Purchase a great puppy training book like the Puppies For Dummies book and wrap it.  On the way to your first puppy rescue you can give your girlfriend the book and explain what your going to be doing for the day.
  • If your girlfriend is uninterested in a new puppy as a gift then you can just spend a nice day together looking at puppies (who can resist puppy watching?).  If she is interested then you can start the discussion of the responsibility of caring for a puppy as well as seeing some prospects during your day.

You may need to adapt this for Christmas as I’m sure puppy rescues would not be showing their puppies on Christmas day.

A few more pointers:

  • If indeed you decide that a puppy is in your future please avoid purchasing your puppy from the pet store.  The majority of these puppies come from puppy mills which are horrible places.  Read more about puppy mills here.
  • Again if you do decide that a puppy is in your future then please consider adopting your puppy from a local animal rescue or shelter.  If you’re like us and you’re interested in becoming a more green eco-friendly family then one of the greenest things you can do is adopt your puppy from the shelter or animal rescue.
  • Make sure you’re informed and know exactly what your getting into.  I’d suggest reading the entire Puppies For Dummies book before making any decisions on purchasing a puppy.  There are some great tips in the book on how to choose a puppy: puppy temperament tests, breed selection, and many more.

One final thought.  If you plan on getting a Christmas puppy then make sure your significant other is ready to take on the responsibility of a new puppy.  A puppy as a Christmas gift is usually a bad idea because people just simply aren’t ready for that kind of responsibility.

I think that pretty much sums it up.  If your truly bent on getting your loved one a  puppy for Christmas then please try following my “Puppy As A Gift” idea rather than taking the full plunge without the consent of your girlfriend or boyfriend.

This article contains affiliate links.  If you click the links on this page and make a purchase we will receive a small monetary commission that we will use to help cover the costs of running the Puppy In Training website.

Top Picks For Our Puppies

    We Like: Beef Collagen Sticks - All of our pups love to bite, nip, and chew. We love using Collagen Sticks to help divert these unwanted behaviors.
    We Like: Calmeroos Puppy Toy w/ Heartbeat and Heat Packs - Perfect for new puppies. Helps ease anxiety in their new home.
    We Like: Crazy Dog Train-Me Treats - We use these as our high-value treats for our guide dog puppies.
    We Like: The Farmer's Dog - A couple months ago we started feeding Raven fresh dog food and she loves it! Get 50% off your first order of The Farmer's Dog.

Check out more of our favorites on our New Puppy Checklist.

Similar Posts


  1. I watched a video on utube of a family giving a puppy for chrismas .From what i could see the poor thing was in some kind of a container and I can just imagine how it felt .All this noise of kids around it ,new home ,new smells .I just thought poor thing .
    I wonder how long it will be before the novelty wears off. The only thing I can hope for is that the adults have taken the responsibility of rearing the puppy and they themselves have done thier own research on what to do .

  2. Thank you so much for speaking out, the number of puppies that end up in shelters come January when everyone is back to work or school is heartbreaking.

  3. Here’s an important point from the article:

    “i Don’t put a puppy or kitten under the tree. Moving to a new home can be overwhelming for a dog or cat, so imagine moving into a home on Christmas Day. There’s a lot going on, which can either stress out the animal or cause people to be distracted from caring for it, Motko said.”

  4. I just wrote an article myself about why a chrismas puppy is not a good idea.
    My husband produced an add some years ago about why getting a puppy at chrismas usually ends in another one for the shelter.
    A puppy is not a commodity.

  5. @Dog Grooming Scottsdale, I totally agree…dogs are a huge responsibility and are definitely one of those gifts that shouldn’t be a surprise..

    As we mentioned earlier try giving something like a dog collar, dog toy, or dog bed as the gift and at that time discuss your idea of giving a dog as a gift. It’s much easier to return a dog toy rather than the actual dog.

  6. @Wendy, good point on puppies in the winter time. I usually don’t think too much about the seasons because I live in southern California. However, the day I picked up Linus from the animal shelter it rained for about two weeks straight. Needless to say I had a difficult time convincing him it was a good idea to go outside and pee while it was raining. I ended up carrying him out to the grass then carrying him back into the house.

  7. I think it is soooo dangerous to get pets as gifts. I did that once and we ended up getting rid of the poor little thing. I think getting a dog is one of those gifts that can’t be a surprise.

    You have to talk about it before hand and make sure that you can care for it a week later. Really nice site though and good article.

  8. It’s funny how many articles I’ve noticed across the internet that are now posting information about pets as gifts. I guess it’s the time of year. The latest one is from the Heartland Connection. Here’s a snippet from the article:

    “At the Heartland Humane Society in Ottumwa, Board President Jean Sporer told Fact Finder that the Humane Society discourages the idea of giving pets as gifts at any time of year.”

  9. I just read through the article Pet Adoptions a lifetime commitment and I was glad to hear that the shelters are enforcing the idea of pet adoption as a lifetime commitment. Here’s a quote from the article:

    “According to John Welsh, Riverside County animal control spokesman, the old theory was that many of the spontaneous, gift-under-the-tree adoptions often resulted in animals soon coming back to the shelters. Now shelters promote the idea that the holidays are a perfect time to add a fuzzy family member — with the firm understanding that a pet adoption is a lifelong commitment.”

  10. I think getting a puppy for someone else would be to hard. In our family we all have a different “favorite”. Yes, we love all our pets but, we each click with them in a different way.

    I also think that getting a puppy in the winter (Christmas in the the States) is bad timing. House training seems to take longer because no one wants to go out in the cold, muck, & snow. The nicer weather seems to be easier for getting someone out with the puppy & they can also play & wear them out.

  11. As everyone knows I like to keep track of the latest news by subscribing to other blogs and magazines via RSS. If you don’t know what RSS is then I suggest you check out this article: What is RSS?

    Anyhow, I just wanted to mention that I came across another article titled Don’t give a dog for Christmas.

    I mentioned an alternative to giving a puppy as a gift. This article suggests giving a dog bed as the Christmas gift and tell your family in the new year you will adopt a puppy as a family together. Sounds like a good alternative to me!

  12. I just came across this articles on pets as gifts. Just a few more things one should consider before giving a pet as a gift.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.