ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Pet owners who celebrate Christmas may be wondering what gifts to buy for their furry companions this year. 

Deciding on those special gifts can sometimes be confusing, however. Pet owners sometimes find it challenging to decide whether to buy gifts that allow dogs and cats to be involved in the family’s traditional gift-giving process or ones that keep them busy doing their own thing while everyone else exchanges presents.

Some dogs and cats are anything but thrilled with Christmas-morning cheer. To them, a houseful of boisterous excitement of tearing open presents is just anxiety-filled chaos. Other pets are all about it, and want to be part of the action. 

That is why experts say there are plenty of gift options to go around. For dogs who may get a little anxious on Christmas morning, plush toys can help keep them occupied and their minds off the commotion and noise. 

“Really good things we have are snuffle mats and snuffle balls to keep them involved, so when they are having Christmas, the presents are getting opened, they have their own things happening off to the side,” said Barbara Harris, an associate at The Canine Crunchery, a Rockford dog bakery and pet shop.

Harris says chewy and squeaky toys, holiday-themed clothing, even Christmas stockings and special activities are popular with many of her customers.

“People that come in and buy bulk treats, and then do an Advent calendar,” she said. “So, treats are huge right now. And we do specialty Christmas ones of course.”

Treats and toys that contain catnip are always popular gifts for cats, Harris said.

According to data, the pet-centric gift industry is booming across the country. Despite inflation, Americans are expected to spend $60 billion on presents and accessories for dogs, cats, and other animals by the end of the year. That figure includes gifts for Valentine’s Day, birthdays, and Christmas.

Do you buy gifts for your pets? Let us know.