As a general rule, it is unwise to ever give someone a dog as an unsolicited gift.
A dog is a large commitment, and there are animal shelters full of unwanted Christmas, Easter and birthday pets as gifts.
A puppy is a living being and totally dependent upon their owners in all ways, they are a lifetime commitment. Too often, life’s circumstances will force dedicated pet owners into the difficult corner of having to surrender their loved pets.
Deciding and choosing what kind of breed of dog or puppy is a decision which takes time and forethought on the part of the would-be owner. Facilities, lifestyle, time, and financial constraints are unique to that household; an outsider can only guess when it comes to these factors.
Families may have many varying restrictions on whether or not a particular, if any, type of dog is suitable for that family, so an outsider buying a dog for a family or person without considering all of the important factors that go into having one, does not constitute responsible gift giving.
As for parents buying their children puppies as gifts, any wise parent knows that the responsibility of a dog ultimately lies with the parent, just as the responsibility of the child is with the parent. So if a parent chooses to give their child a puppy as a gift, at any time of the year, the parent needs to know and accept responsibility for that pets well being.
So, to decide if you are gifting a dog, you need to keep the following questions in mind:
1) Is this pet a suitable “gift” for (the intended recipient)?
With this more important question:
2) Am I going to be caring for this pet?
If the answer to the second question is “No”, then the answer to the first question is also “No”.
- Am I going to be caring for this puppy after it is no longer small and “cute”?
- Am I willing to care and pay for the dog when it gets older and/or sick?
Many dogs are given as puppies while they are “cute”, young and healthy, a puppy remains dependent upon their owners as they grow old, sometimes sick and have behavior that does not always suit our lifestyles. Larger breeds need more space and exercise which may not be ideal for a smaller house or apartment or one without a fenced in yard.
Maintaining a dog within any household requires effort. A pet doesn’t attribute value to material things as people do, so when a dog is tearing up furniture, chews an expensive pair of shoes, is allowed to use the restroom all over the house, this all requires training, effort, patience and expenses for cleaning materials, that can make the reality of owning a puppy outweigh the cuteness of the original “gift”.
Unless you have prearranged with someone, with whom after long consideration and consultation, has agreed and desires a particular breed of dog, a responsible adult who is prepared to make the lifetime commitment of caring for and homing the pet and together you have chosen this pet; the conclusion is usually always that no pet is suitable to give as a gift.