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The Globe’s annual pet gift guide is back for its ninth year with products your animals will love, modelled by rescue dogs, cats and a turtle, too, at the Toronto Humane Society

It is the most wonderful day of my year. Getting to spend an entire day with wonderful animals – homeless through no fault of their own, looking for their second chance and full of plenty of love to give. Add to that, the thrill of giving these deserving babies the best toys and products of the year? It’s a very merry day indeed.


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Bruce came in the door bursting with puppy energy. He had no time for introductions; he wanted to play immediately and made everything a game. His favourite? Pounce onto the set and launch the hat he was supposed to model in the air. With a few treats, he posed – momentarily – and looked ready for a romp in the snow in his Ultimate Stretch Vest and Arctic Air aviator hat.

A long-term resident at THS, Bruce is looking for a home that understands his big puppy needs, and one that will help him learn and grow into a confident pup. The THS will provide his new family with post-adoption support to make sure both Bruce and his new humans succeed.

Vest starting at $49, hat $26 from


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Willy is an eight-month-old pup with a broken pelvis who came to the Toronto Humane Society (THS) from a remote Ontario community. He’s currently under medical care at the THS, and despite his painful history, was full of cuddles and kisses for me. He was happy to don this best-selling snowsuit from Canada Pooch.

Starting at $65,


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

It took a lot of restraint (and common-sense texts from my husband) to not take this baby girl French Bulldog rescue puppy home. It’s hard to believe she’s in a shelter, but here Lanta is, nub wagging at full speed and waiting patiently (as patient as a bulldog can be, anyway) for her forever home at seven months old. Lanta is receiving medical care at THS for now; she needs surgery for cherry eye, a common ailment for squish-faced breeds, but will be available for adoption shortly. She looked extra gorgeous in her handmade, waterproof collar and leash from Coquitlam B.C.’s Nose & Hearts.

Collar $35.99, leash $27.99 from


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Four-month-old purr machine Marcus hopped right on the hottest item of our gift guide – the sold-out-everywhere Ferris Cat Exercise wheel, a Tik-Tok sensation. From ZiggyDoo in Quebec, the four-foot exercise wheel ($589) provides exercise and mental stimulation for your indoor cat – who is just waiting to go viral.

$589 from (preorders currently being taken)


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

This gentle soul was recently transferred to Toronto from Manitoba due to overcrowding in her first shelter, but you’d never know it, as she made herself right at home. She was immediately interested in her mushroom scratching post – 2021′s hottest design aesthetic.

$79.99 at Walmart Canada


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Ming wanted to sniff every corner of the room before he was ready for his reading. Good Dog is a coffee-table book full of gorgeous portraits of man’s best friend, from show dogs to mix-breeds. It underlines a truth Ming already knows well – every dog is a good dog.

$55 at Indigo


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

It’s no secret that photographing energetic puppies – high speed lightning balls who often appear as blurry breezes in pictures – isn’t easy. But not so, with Tamara. This three-month-old Shepherd sweetheart was born to model. She loved showing off her Cold Front raincoat

Starting at $46,


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Two months old and spry as can be, Mackenzie was hard-pressed to stay in one place for long. But the Calmeroos toy, with its heartbeat and warmth mimicking a puppy’s mom, did the trick – for a minute.

$54.99 at Pet Valu


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

A curious kitten, four-month-old Poptart was friendly and playful as soon as she strutted in. She was keen to play with the Cheerble pool table scratch pad (and USB-charged “wicked ball,” with a mind of its own – sure to provide hours of entertainment).

$65 from


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Odie is here to convince any “dog only” person that cats are just as lovable. He was brimming with cuddles and attention, only interested in scratches and cuddles from humans, though he sat momentarily beside the Cat Advent Calendar from Catcouver. The box is full of premium treats and toys, with proceeds from every sale going to the Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association.

$49.99 from

Little Miss Mia

Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Little Miss Mia – who only answers to her full name, thank you very much – is a tiny three-month-old kitten full of personality. She strolled right over to pose with her book, though I’m not sure her owner will need it as Little Miss Mia isn’t shy about letting you know exactly what she needs.

What Cats Want, An Illustrated Guide for Truly Understanding Your Cat, $26.99 at Indigo


Amberly McAteer/The Globe and Mail

Yes, turtles too need homes for the holidays. This energetic boy moved much quicker than his stereotype would lead you to believe – though he might have just wanted a different festive hat.

The THS wants to remind any potential adopter that turtles are a long-term investment (and return!) because they can live up to 50 years. Though his better half was unavailable for photographs, Venus is part of a bonded pair and must go to a home that’s willing to take both him and Neptune, the best two-for-one deal this Christmas.

Merry & Bright Festive Fluff small pet holiday pyjamas, $8.99 at PetSmart

All animals were available or getting ready for adoption at the time of our photo shoot, but animals can get scooped up quickly. If you’re ready to welcome a new family member this Christmas, call or visit the Toronto Humane Society. For more information, visit