By Joanna Mitzel

This year marks Mister B’s 15th Christmas, which means he’s reached expert status level at receiving gifts. He’d like to share with all of you some of his favorite (OK and a few not-so-favorite) suggested gifts for senior dogs and their parents this year.




For the trendsetters and technology lovers:

Doggy DNA Kits – At-home DNA tests are all the rage for humans to learn more about their lineage and maybe links to different inherited traits or health concerns. The same applies for dogs. People love finding out what their adopted mixed breed pup is really a mixture of. Word to the wise; these are somewhat pricey for both humans and dogs alike.

Two-Way Pet/Treat Cameras – Being able to check with your dog while you’re away is priceless. Many cams have two way audio allowing you to greet your pups and some even offer the ability to toss a treat while you’re chatting. In our household, we even use one to monitor a doggy door that texts alerts when motion is detected.


For the philanthropists:

ODH Calendar and/or Sponsoring an ODH Dog – The holidays are a wonderful time for giving. Everyone can use a calendar—especially one featuring darling senior pups. An ODH sponsorship is a gift that keeps on giving. Please consider supporting Old Dog Haven’s efforts as part of any annual giving. Check the ODH website ( more information about calendars and sponsorships.


For the crafters: 

Homemade Dog Treats – Each year, while many households fill their kitchens with the scent of warm chocolate chip cookies, I fill my kitchen with peanut butter, oats, chicken and sometimes even salmon for the felines in my life. We really enjoy and appreciate exchanging homemade doggy treats with friends and family—just be sure to include ingredient lists in case of any allergies.



No-Sew Fleece Blanket – Mister B LOVES fleece blankets. One of our favorite presents we’ve ever received was a no-sew fleece blanket made with doggy patterned fleece. We’ve used these as towels, blankets, bedding, and even as stuffing inside of a doggie bed when someone may or may not have destroyed the comfy foam inner pad.





For the practical people:

Stroller/Ramp/Wearables/Belly Bands/Diapers – These are probably some of Mister B’s least favorite holiday gifts, however I have been very appreciative of “supplies” from this category. Especially in multiple dog homes, things wear out and giving a gift that someone could really use can go a long way. A fun colored, homemade belly band is giving the gift of flooring and a portable ramp or doggy steps is giving the gift of good health (in lieu of the chiropractic care resulting from lifting large dogs)

For the fashionistas:

This year it seems as if my computer search history has me pegged for both dogs and socks because my inbox has been filled with marketing ads for custom printed socks with my dogs’ faces on them. They’re cute, fun, affordable, and who doesn’t expect to receive at least one pair of comfy socks during the holidays? So, why not personalize them with a pup’s sweet face?

No humans allowed:

Subscription boxes – We have both given and received specifically Barkboxes and have enjoyed them each time. While it may be a surprise as to what exactly the contents will be, we’ve had a lot of opportunities to try toys and treats we have never seen before. Even a one-time subscription box can make a great gift for someone you may not know well, outside of their love for their dog.

Interactive toys– Some of the best toys for my senior brood have been interactive, especially any one that also offers an edible reward. We have a number of wobble dispensers, puzzles, and noise makers that require some thought to receive the treat. Interactive toys can help keep senior minds sharp and provide a little indoor exercise.


We wish everyone a very happy holiday season and a happy and healthy new year.


Editor’s note: Thank you Joanna for your monthly blogs during 2018! We hope to hear from you again next year.   


And for additional gift ideas, you can check out this page on the ODH website!

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