Whenever I think about dogs and Christmas, that famous slogan always comes to mind: “A dog is for life, not just for Christmas”,

This slogan was coined by UK charity Dogs Trust in 1978, but is just as pertinent today. A stark reminder that giving a dog for Christmas is often not the best idea. To be a dog owner, or to live a life with an animal, requires a lot of giving, and a lot of love and commitment. 

What To Give a Dog Lover?

Ok, serious part over. With dogs and pups off the list, there are certainly other ways to give to dog lovers. If you’ve not done your Christmas shopping yet and have a few minutes, this is worth it!

If you’re reading this, it’s clear you’re a dog lover. Perhaps you’re a dog owner, maybe you’re thinking of adopting, or you might be a supporter who knows they aren’t able to give a dog a home right now, but may do in the future. 

Whatever your reason for landing on our blog today, chances are you might be looking for a fabulous holiday gift for the dog lovers in your life. Naturally, we don’t do dogs as gifts, but we can offer dogs in northern India the gift of life!

Have a sniff around our Dharma Dog Shop, where you’ll find the following super duper gift ideas alongside our other “Swag to make your tail wag!”


2 Dogs and a Grrl Leashes

Love dogs and the environment? We got you covered. These leashes are made from upcycled materials, and come in a variety of colours. Could there be a more perfect gift for your friend or family member who has a social conscience? 

Rescue Magnet Pack

My personal favourite — the magnets! Beautiful artistic impressions of some of our DAR dogs in four different designs. The most beautiful thing about these gifts? The money goes to covering medical expenses for sick or injured dogs in Dharamsala. What a fun stocking filler for kids (or big kids) with a healthy dose of compassion thrown in — they’re bound to love it!

Meals With Mini

A gift with a difference for the foodie in your life! DAR has been partnering with Mini Seth to offer online ‘cook-alongs’ in aid of street dogs in Delhi and Dharamsala. The group sessions are 2 hours and are guaranteed to be a fun, exciting way to spend a weekend afternoon creating delicious Indian treats! To read more about the cook-alongs, visit our blog or see what previous participants had to say. Ooooh, and the exciting news is that we now have a cookbook — packed full of Mini’s delectable, rich and spicy recipes. A holiday gift that gives in so many ways!!

Sponsor a Dog

Good old-fashioned altruism can be the best gift for someone in your life who likes to keep ‘stuff’ to a minimum. Sponsoring a dog, quite literally, means saving lives. Some dogs stay at our rescue center — they can’t go back on the streets and don’t get adopted. So we take care of them. And a gift of a dog adoption means you take care of them too. If you’re reading this and someone comes to mind whose heart would just sing at the very thought of this, you’ve found your Christmas gift for that person.

Thank you

Sponsor Shakira

A Tee for under the Tree

Just perfect for a stocking-filler or a little ‘extra’ for the dog lover in your life, our range of tees are not only super cute, but they tell the world you’re a dog-lover extraordinaire! They come in a long sleeve version for extra layering on those chilly winter dog walks, or if you find yourself in the Southern Hemisphere, there are plenty of bright summery options! ‘Rescue fashion’ is the new black this holiday season. 

So there you have it — a dog lover’s Christmas all wrapped up. You’d be barking mad to miss out on giving the gift of a better life to Indian street dogs. If reading this made you feel warm and fuzzy, get going on your guilt free shopping. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the support and love you show through your purchase. And our dogs would give you a big smacker on the face I’m sure! 


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About the author

Vaila Erin is a writer, lover of animals, and a bit of a nomad. For her, life is about stories — observing yourself and others so that you can laugh, cry and entertain each other with its absurdities. Connect with her at vailaerin.com or via LinkedIn.