Buying Pets As Holiday Gifts


Discussing The Many Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Buy Someone A Pet As A Holiday Gift

Now that it’s December, many people are picking out holiday gifts to give to their loved ones. However, some gifts are better than others. It’s a common occurrence to see people gifting puppies or kittens as a holiday gift. While this may seem like a cute and thoughtful gift, it’s actually quite burdensome. Being a pet owner is a huge commitment that not everyone is ready to handle. This article will discuss the practicality of giving someone a pet as a holiday gift and why it might not be such a good idea.

A puppy as a gift

A puppy as a gift

Why People Give Pets As Gifts

It’s a long-standing tradition in American culture to give someone a pet (usually puppy or kitten) as a gift. This is usually reserved for special occasions such as birthdays or holidays. Even holiday commercials have suggested this with the iconic puppy or kitten sitting under the christmas tree with a big red bow on them. Many young children often ask their parents for a puppy or kitten as a holiday gift and most parents are willing to accommodate. 

However, pets don’t always make good gifts. To be clear, pet ownership is a truly wonderful experience. It teaches us patience, time-management, and increases our capacity to love. That being said, not everyone is ready to be a pet owner. This is especially true in young children. Most children love the idea of owning a pet, but usually don’t understand the level of responsibility that comes with it. If you plan on gifting a pet for a child, be sure they are mature and/or old enough for that level of responsibility. 

Reasons Why Pets Don’t Make Good Holiday Gifts

As previously mentioned, pet ownership is a truly amazing experience that everyone should experience at least once. However, being a pet owner is a huge responsibility and should not be taken lightly. Ideally, the new pet owner should be the one making the decision to adopt or buy a pet. When a pet is given as a gift, the new pet owner doesn’t have a choice in the matter. Ultimately, pet ownership should be a choice, not a gift. 

While this is just our opinion, we would like to offer some reasons why pet ownership should be a choice, not a gift. Here are just a few reasons why giving a pet as a gift is not a good idea.


Being a pet owner is very rewarding, but it’s also a huge responsibility. This is a living, breathing animal that relies on their owner to care for them. This includes daily feeding, providing fresh water, outdoor potty breaks (for dogs), cleaning litter boxes (for cats), routine veterinarian visits, grooming, and quality time. These are just a few of the many responsibilities that come with being a pet owner. If the person you’re gifting a pet to isn’t prepared for these responsibilities, then you may want to reconsider your gift idea.




Being a pet owner is not only a responsibility, but a luxury. To put it plainly, pets cost money. Pets need things like food, toys, accessories, veterinary bills, medicine, preventative care, and grooming. All of these pet costs add up over time and can be somewhat expensive. The Spruce Pets reports that the average yearly cost of owning a dog in 2023 ranges from $1,500 to $9,900. Daily Paws reports that the average yearly cost of owning a cat is around $1,800 a year. When gifting someone a pet, be sure they can afford it first. 

Time Consuming

Many people don’t realize just how time consuming being a pet owner can be. Beyond just providing food and water, pets need attention. Both dogs and cats are social creatures and they thrive off social interactions with their owners. Taking your dog for walks and petting your cat on the couch are the moments they look forward to the most. Therefore, it’s important that the person receiving a pet as a gift has the spare time to love and care for their new pet. 

The Big Picture

Ultimately, giving someone a pet as a gift can be a good decision or a bad decision. It relies heavily on the person you’re gifting the pet to and if they have the time, money, and resources. It also comes down to circumstances. For example, giving your uncle a dog as a gift could be problematic as he might not want that level of responsibility. On the contrary, a parent gifting their child a pet could be a good thing as that pet would become the family pet. As a family pet, everyone in the family could contribute and share the responsibilities.  

While the decision to give a pet as a gift is up to you, we hope that you take the aforementioned information into consideration. Being a pet owner is very rewarding, but it’s also a big responsibility. Only gift a pet to someone if they truly want it and if they are truly prepared for it.

A professional dog walker

A professional dog walker

Looking For A Pet Sitter?

Do you or someone you know need a pet sitter? Then look no further than ParaMount Pet Care! We are the leading pet care professionals in the Luzerne County area. All of our sitters are insured, bonded, trained in pet CPR & first aid, and dedicated to caring for your pets. We offer a wide variety of pet sitting services such as in-home pet sitting, routine dog walking, overnight stays, and more! Click here to see all of our services! Click here to become a client today or give us a call at 570-814-1037. We look forward to hearing from you soon!