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11 Brilliant Gifts for the Dog Lover in Your Life

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Etsy

Even if you're not a dog lover yourself, you probably know a few people who would appreciate some canine-inspired gifts this holiday season. Here are 11 creative gift ideas any dog enthusiast would go barking mad for.


1. DOG BLUEPRINT PILLOWS; $95

We all know at least one person whose bumper stickers, t-shirts, and even salt and pepper shakers all announce their favorite breed of dog to the world. Add to their collection with these hand-screen-printed pillows that feature one of 52 breeds and include insightful details about each variety’s history and physical characteristics.

Find it: Uncommon Goods


2. FITBARK DOG ACTIVITY MONITOR: $94

We use devices to measure our activity levels throughout the day, so why shouldn't dogs do the same? The FitBark attaches to a dog’s collar and monitors their daily behavior and sleeping patterns, allowing owners to track how active their pup is, notice any concerning patterns, set health goals, and even share memorable moments with family and friends.

Find it: Amazon


3. THE DOGIST: PHOTOGRAPHIC ENCOUNTERS WITH 1000 DOGS; $16

If you aren't able to meet 1000 dogs in person, browsing through a photo compilation of four-legged friends of all shapes and sizes is probably the next best thing. The New York Times bestseller from photojournalist Elias Weiss Friedman (and of the famous Instagram thedogist) features special categories like Beards, Working Dogs, Dogs in Fancy Outfits, and Cones of Shame.

Find it: Amazon


4. CHUCKIT! LAUNCHERS; $11

Any human-canine duo who uses this hands-free tool to up their fetch game will be the envy of the dog park. With just the flick of a wrist, the user can toss a ball up to three times as far as they normally would without the hassle-free toy. Cue a happy, healthy dog and a grateful owner who no longer has to touch those slobbery balls.

Find it: Amazon


5. DOG BOWTIE; $36 for 3

Unlike most canine fashion accessories, these doggie bowties are as stylish as they are dignified. The handmade bows loop comfortably around the dog’s collar for a look that’s dapper beyond compare. Choose from six collections: The New Orleans, The Georgian, The New Yorker, The Floridian, The Cali, and The Minnesotan.

Find it: Etsy


6. BAKE-A-BONE: THE ORIGINAL DOG TREAT MAKER; $29

For dog owners who keep their pets on a gluten, preservative-free, or GMO-free diet, the Bake-A-Bone offers ultimate control over what’s going into their canine's treats. Users can follow the recipes that are included in the kit or they can channel their inner dog-food pastry chefs and get creative.

Find it: Amazon


7. DACHSHUND CUTTING BOARD; $26

Nothing pairs better with cheese than some wiener (dog). This handmade cutting board is made from real timber and is treated with food safe oil to ensure a long lifespan. At 25 inches from front to end—or nose to tail, rather—this board makes the perfect vehicle for even the most ambitious cheese platter.

Find it: Etsy


8. GOURMET DOG TREATS: CHRISTMAS ASSORTMENT; $25

Dogs appreciate seasonal snacks around the holidays just as much as anyone else. These grain-free peanut butter treats are handmade from garbanzo flour and yogurt frosting. And they’ll keep dogs distracted from any other cookies that may be lying around the house. Each order contains 12 treats, and with a shelf life of up to four weeks they'll last dog owners through the new year.

Find it: Etsy


9. THE PUPCUP KIT; $17

The PupCup Kit ensures that your loved one's four-legged hiking companion will never have to drink from their owner's cap again. When it's not being used, the PupCup fits snugly onto the bottom of a 32-ounce Nalgene water bottle, which comes included with the purchase. The cup is available in Ruh Roh Red, Hello Yellow, Growler Green, and Big Toe Blue.

Find it: The Original PupCup


10. BAD DOG WISDOM DINER MUGS; $35 for 4

Every dog lover knows that dogs are endless wells of wisdom. This set of ceramic, kitschy mugs offers important life advice inspired by our canine counterparts.

Find it: Uncommon Goods


11. BARK & CO'S WINTRY MIX BOX; $35

If you’re having trouble deciding on just one dog-inspired gift, this package from BarkShop includes an assortment of five toys and treats, which could include "droolers" dog snacks and seasonal plush animals. There’s no better way for a dog to spend the holidays than by ripping into a penguin chew toy.

Find it: BarkShop


BONUS: MAKE A DONATION TO THE ASPCA

Not every dog is fortunate enough to have a family to show them love around the holidays. According to the ASPCA, approximately 3.9 million dogs enter American shelters each year. For people who truly love dogs, no gift will do more to warm their hearts than a donation made in their name.

Find it: ASPCA

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John Phillips, Getty Images
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Pop Culture
How The Crown Saved the Corgis
John Phillips, Getty Images
John Phillips, Getty Images

Corgis may be both Queen Elizabeth II and the internet’s favorite dog breed, but their longtime association with the former has actually proven detrimental to their popularity in England. So much so that, in 2009, the stout little furballs were added to the UK Kennel Club’s list of native breeds that were “at risk of extinction.” Now, The Telegraph reports, their numbers are rising—thanks in part to the popularity of Netflix’s The Crown.

According to The Telegraph, the Queen’s love of the corgi is partly what caused its dip in popularity, as they “have long been regarded as a breed for the elderly and the genteel upper middle class.” But The Crown’s revisiting of the royal family in the early days of Elizabeth II’s reign (and the years leading up to it) have shown the Queen in a new, and much more stylish, light—and her beloved breed has reaped the rewards. In just the past two months, since The Crown’s second season dropped on Netflix in December, the Kennel Club has seen enough interest in the breed to take them off the endangered list entirely.

The Crown has certainly been important in the resurgence of the corgi breed,” Kennel Club public relations manager David Robson said. “It has increased interest in the breed. Following the transmission of the second series, searches for the breed puppies on our website went up by 22 percent.”

The dogs have proven to be a hit with viewers, as well as their costars. Claire Foy and Matt Smith, who portrayed Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip in the show’s first two seasons, admitted that when they’re filming with the series' dogs, it’s the corgis who steal the show.

“When we’re with the corgis, then all the shots are about the corgis and you have to fit your acting around what the corgis are doing,” Foy explained in an interview with Off Set. “Which is absolutely … fine. And is the way it should be quite frankly.”

But even before Netflix unleashed its pricey royal drama on the world, the Queen’s dogs were finding their way back into the spotlight. In 2011, shortly after Prince William married Kate Middleton, BBC reported that the Cardigan Welsh corgi (a sort of cousin to the Pembroke Welsh corgi that the Queen prefers, though the Kennel Club lumps them into one category) saw a registration increase of 134 percent, which the group chalked up to the “royal wedding effect.”

Interest in the breed surged again in 2015, when the Queen—who has owned 30 of the dogs during her life, beginning with her childhood pooch Dookie—announced that she would no longer breed the pups, as she did not want to leave any young dogs behind in the event of her death. Adding to their pop culture cachet: During their first official interview after announcing their engagement, Prince Harry admitted that part of the reason he knew wife-to-be Meghan Markle was “the one” was because “the corgis took to [her] straight away.”

[h/t: The Telegraph]

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Animals
Watch a Cheetah Hunt Its Prey—From the Cheetah's Point of View
BBC
BBC

Even if you're a huge fan of wildlife documentaries, you've never seen a cheetah hunt quite like this. For PBS's latest Nature miniseries, Animals With Cameras, animal behaviorists strapped custom-made cameras on meerkats, seals, cheetahs, and more to capture never-before-seen footage.

"There's absolutely no way we could see this any other way," wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan says in the clip below, which follows a hunting cheetah as she and her siblings try to take down an eland, a type of antelope native to east and southern Africa.

A holster used to attach a camera to a cheetah's head
Isabel Rogers

The custom-made camera was strapped to the top of the cheetah's head, allowing it to record footage from the animal's point of view. The cameras were designed by Chris Watts of British Technical Films, a UK-based company that specializes in developing custom camera kits to capture wildlife and nature footage.

The cheetah-mounted cameras had to be extra-light, since the fast-moving predators were extremely sensitive to the device's weight. (As you, too, might be if you had a camera on your head while sprinting.) The straps that secured the camera had to allow enough airflow to keep the cat's head cool and be flexible enough that the animal could get the device off if it became too bothersome. And since running across the savannah at 70 mph can get a bit bumpy, the camera had to have stabilizing sensors to make the footage smooth, so it wouldn't make viewers queasy.

The result is a pretty spectacular scene following a cheetah from the moment it picks up the scent of its prey to the end of its hunt. Watch the full video below. We won't spoil how it ends.

The final episode of Animals With Cameras airs on February 14 at 8 p.m. Eastern Time.

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