Lots of dogs wearing Christmas hats

8 Amazing Gifts For Dog Lovers Australia: Tested & Evaluated 2024

Written By Olivia De Santos | Canine Coach, Professional Writer & Video Content Creator.
Edited & Fact Checked By Renae Soppe | Double B.A Journalism & Science. 
Last Updated: 4th January 2024

The art of a great gift is all about showing a person you truly know and love them. That you have seen some aspect of their life or personality that you want to honour. The best gift that anyone has ever bought me was a single wrapped mango because it’s my favourite fruit. Fundamentally, a good gift helps a person feel seen.

If you know someone who is a dedicated dog Dad or dog Mum, you’re in the right place!

These are the best gifts for dog lovers you’ll find on the Australian market.

Australia's Best Gifts For Dog Owners Reviewed

1. Dog DNA Test - Best Overall

Dog DNA Test Gift for a mix breed Border Collie

DNA tests are pretty interesting in general. It’s fascinating to think we have come so far with DNA science that a single strain of saliva can tell our past so intimately.

Dog DNA tests are even more intriguing. They can tell the owner all sorts of things about their dog that they may not have known.

Some are more clinical in nature. They focus on the health screening aspect. Certain genetic markers in a dog’s DNA can indicate if they are susceptible to certain diseases.

Some tests are more ancestry based. What breeds were the parents and grandparents of the dog? This would be so interesting to any dog Mum or Dad to a rescue dog or mixed-breed dog.

A good indicator to know whether this would be a good present for a dog lover you know is if they have done a DNA test on themselves. It wouldn’t be a stretch to assume they may also be interested in finding out where Fido is from too!

2. Custom Dog Portrait - Best Art Option

Dog Portrait Gift

I have personal experience with this one! One of my mother’s dogs passed away last year. For Christmas, I commissioned an independent artist to create a portrait of him. It was a simple pencil drawing but my Mum lit up when she saw it. It felt very meaningful to bring him back into her life in some small way.

A piece of custom art is always appreciated. Even people who aren’t particularly sentimental really love this gift. It’s even better if you can source an artist that uses a style that would speak to the person you are gifting the piece to. Failing that, a pencil drawing like mine is still very impactful.

You can even commission an artist to draw both the owner and the dog together. Maybe even more than one dog. I would warn you that not all artists have equal capabilities in all subjects. Dare I say it - most don’t have the same skills across subjects! You’ll find that artists that specialise in drawing animals are rarely wholly comfortable with drawing people and vice versa. Don’t hire an artist to draw a group photo of the owner and the dog together unless you’ve seen evidence that they can handle both proficiently.

I like commissioning art as gifts a lot because it feels very personal. It also allows me to support local, small, diverse artists.

My one complaint would be the cost. It is one of the more expensive presents for dog lovers on this list. This is not a budget-friendly option by any means. Pricing will vary from artist to artist. The cheapest will be digital art.

If you can spare the expense, a custom portrait is a beautiful gift for dog lovers everywhere.

3. Personalised Dog Collar - Custom Option

Personalised Leather Collar Gift

Everything is better when you can add that small personal touch. A dedicated dog Mum or Dad will love to receive a gift that is personalised to them and their pup.

A personalised dog collar is more than just practicality. It’s a stylish addition to their lives while also being practical. Style and substance.

There are so many cool options for personalised dog collars on the market. There are sleek leather styles that work perfectly for classically chic dog parents. There are bright and bold styles for dog parents who love colour. There are studded dog collars for edgy, goth dog parents. There’s something for everyone which is what makes these such great presents for dog lovers.

Best of all, personalised dog collars aren’t particularly expensive. You would think that anything with a customisation aspect would be pricier. That’s not really the case here. Sure there are more luxury styles but there are reasonably priced ones too. This is a gift for dog lovers that won’t break the bank while still being meaningful.

4. Dog Camera - Best High-End Gift for Busy Professionals

Dog Camera Gift

Now, a dog camera is definitely a high ticket item, but if you really love someone, you may want to spend the big bucks!

This is the ultimate gift for dog parents who are busy professionals. They likely have to leave their dog unattended at home while they work.

I am quite fortunate that I work 100% from home and therefore can watch over my dogs easily. This just isn’t the case for some dog Mums and Dads. Do give them the gift of a watchful eye from wherever they are!

Dog cameras are very cool devices that enable the user to watch their dog remotely. All you need is a smartphone. You get a live feed straight to your living room. You can see if your dog is in distress or fussing. You can also interact with your pup using built-in microphones.

Most dog cameras dispense food too. It could be treats or actual food. This helps quell any anxiety or stress while the owner is away.

Again, this is a pricey item. However, as far as gifts for dog owners go, it’s very thoughtful and appreciated!

5. Dog Backpack - Best Thoughtful Gift for Sporty Dog Parents

Dog Backpack Gift

Do you know a dog Dad who loves to hike or camp with their dog? What about a dog Mum who is always cycling and feels bad she has to leave her pooch behind? Show that you’re an awesome, attentive friend by gifting them a doggy backpack!

This is a great addition to any dog lover’s repertoire. Sporty dog parents will especially appreciate this.

Dog backpacks are much like collars. They come in lots of styles and colours.

You’ll need to select the best style for your dog-loving friend. Here is a shorthand:

  • Box style dog backpack
    They have a square-ish shape and fit like a carrier. This is perfect for dog Mums and Dads who travel frequently with their little dog. It also works well for cycling.
  • Slim fit dog backpack
    These are more like dog bags. The dog’s arms and legs are strapped into the bag, leaving their head out to see the world go by. This is extremely versatile. It works for long walks, hikes and cycling. It’s not a good option for air travel, however.
  • Front-attached dog backpack
    You see these more often marketed to women but everyone can wear one. They work for walking and perhaps hiking. They are more like baby slings. This is also not a good option for air travel.

The thing you have to be mindful of is the dog’s size. You’ll have to find the opportunity to take some decent measurements of your friend’s dog to make this gift work.

It’s not impossible! Just offer to dog sit one night while they do something fun and you’ll have your chance to measure them. You need to measure:

  • The dog’s weight
  • The dog’s length from head to tailbone
  • Circumference around the waist
  • Circumference around the neck

6. Dog Bike Trailer - The Practical Gift for Cyclists

Dog Bike Trailer Gift

Dog backpacks may not work out for everybody. It can be a little bit of a strain to carry your dog on your back if you are not fit. This is why I recommended dog backpacks to sporty dog parents. But for dog lovers who love cycling and maybe don’t have the upper body strength, a bike trailer is a wonderful gift.

Almost anyone can use one if they are a confident cyclist. You simply hook the bike trailer to the back of the bike and ride onto your adventures. It’s the gift of easy transportation for a pup while cycling.

If you’re thinking about buying a dog bike trailer for someone, there are a couple of things to consider:

  1. Is the dog too big?
    If the dog is very heavy or large, you’ll find it difficult to find a suitable bike trailer.
  2. Can the dog sit still?
    I’ll be honest - one of my dogs is not suited to the cycling life. He would literally be a terror if I put him in a bike trailer. He would bounce off the walls and become a hazard. On the other hand, my other dog is much calmer. She is a total couch potato. I’m sure she dreams of a time when she doesn’t need to lift a paw and can have someone ride her around. She is much better suited to the bike trailer life.
  3. Does your friend have a sturdy bike?
    This is not the gift for someone with a thin “Olympic” type bike. It’ll be too fine to reliably drive the bike trailer forward. They need a sturdy bike. Nothing fancy but with enough wheel span to make the bike trailer move smoothly without offloading the balance of the rider.

If these three criteria are met, you’ve got a winning gift on your hands! Again, this is quite a big gift. It’s relatively expensive so definitely reserved for someone you love.

7. Dog Costumes - The Halloween/Christmas Gift

Dog Costume Gift

Dog costumes aren’t for everyone, but the people who love them, really love them!

You’ll know this is a great gift if you have seen your friend dress up their dog before. This also goes down well with families who like Christmas jumpers and funny matching outfits.

Dog costumes are fantastic presents for dog owners who Instagram their dogs a lot. They are fun additions to the dog’s wardrobe for Christmas and Halloween.

To buy a good dog costume, you’ll need to do some measurements when you can. You need:

  • The dog’s weight
  • The dog’s waist circumference
  • The dog’s neck circumference
  • Sometimes their height from shoulder to paws

It depends on the complexity of the costume in honesty.

You don’t need to buy a dog costume that encases the whole dog in a ton of extra fabric. If in doubt, there are smaller, easier costumes to go for. For example, there are Christmas costumes that look like Santa is riding the dog’s back like reindeer on a sleigh. This is an easy one to find and easy one for a dog to get on with. It fits like a harness, so the dog won’t feel uncomfortable wearing it.

Use your best judgement here. If you’ve never seen your friend’s dog in a costume, perhaps this is not the gift for them. Those who do this every year will probably love a new dog outfit to play with during the holiday season!

8. Dog Mum/Dog Dad Caps - The Simple Gift for Dog Mums and Dads

Next, let’s go with something cheap and cheerful. There are a ton of “dog Mum” or “dog Dad” themed gifts on the Australian market. Pretty much anything you can think of from notebooks to phone cases can have dog memes or slogans on them.

A dog cap is clean, simple, and budget-friendly. It’s easy to find them in universal, unisex colours like black, white, red, blue and yellow. They aren’t intrusive. They are also purely a gift for the recipient.

Many of the gifts on this list are both gifts for the dog and gifts for the person. This is one gift that is purely for the person to enjoy.

A simple message to the world that they love their dog!

You’ll need a good idea of how big your friend’s head is. This can be surprisingly difficult to predict. It’s not something you can casually ask for or measure yourself either.

My advice would be to either purchase one as a stocking filler or hope for the best. Or keep the receipt handy. You can always swap the size if it’s way off base.

My Final Verdict

The best gift for a dog lover depends on their personality. Are they fashion-led? Do they like playing dress-up? Are they active and sporty? There is a gift for everyone!

If you have to take a complete shot in the dark, you can’t go wrong with one of the personalised gifts for dog lovers. The custom portrait or collar are fabulous gifts that any dog owner would enjoy.

Olivia De Santos

Olivia De Santos is Gentle Dog Trainers Canine Coach, Professional Writer and Video Content Creator.

Olivia has over 10 years of experience writing professionally and is a dog Mum to Pip, her Podengo and Blue, her Flat-coated Retriever. She loves writing pieces to help people to be better dog owners.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}