By Sally Perkins
The average dog owner spends over $50 a year on dog toys. However, there is a push lately for dog toys that include higher priced digital items. These can include specially designed dog treadmills or a dog fitness tracker with GPS location. But fear not, dog gifts don't need to break the bank. How can you give a more heartfelt, thoughtful and unique gift to your dog?
Make your own gift
During the holidays or on a human family member's birthday, don't leave your canine friend feeling left out. You don't have to spend a lot of money - a homemade gift will be gratefully received. Giving a homemade gift to a pet does not have the same connotations that it does when giving homemade items to human friends. Your pet will overlook a slight error or a weirdly-chosen color scheme and will let you know it is the thought that counts. even beginning seamstresses can craft trial pieces for their canine friends without any heartbreaking critiques.
Gifts to engage with your dog
Playing tug of war with your dog is fun and once everyone knows the rules it can strengthen your bond with your dog. Making your own tug of war from an old shirt, towel, or even a sweatshirt is safe and affordable. You know your clothes haven't been contaminated in any way and because you make the "rag tag" yourself, you can be sure of the quality. Making this toy is simple - just cut the fabric into three strips and tie them together at one end. It is then just a case of braiding the three fabric strips, leaving enough room at the end to tie another knot. It is then ready for you to play with your dog.
Keep your dog active
Keeping your dog active while you are out, or even while you are in and busy with something else, does not require an automated ball throwing machine. You can easily craft a stuffed stocking full of dog treats. Simply sew the end of the stocking closed after you fill it with treats. Then, hide the toy somewhere and watch as your dog spends time excitedly hunting for its treats. This handmade gift is healthy and is guaranteed to keep your dog interested and active.
Gift giving for a dog doesn't have to be expensive. Dogs are interested in all sorts of handmade toys, in particular ones that also come with extra play time with you. Designing your own gifts can be fun and thoughtful and made from items you already have around the house. It's a win-win for you and your dog.