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Heartwarming Stories for Your Holiday


As we prepare for a new round of holidays, it seems an appropriate time to share some of the more heartwarming pet stories Our Site has to offer. We hope these stories will put a smile on your face and that you’ll carry that feeling of bliss with you when you to spend time with your friends, your family and (of course) your pets this holiday season.

Reviewed on:

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

  • Boy with Rare Muscle Condition Finds New Strength from Three-Legged Dog

    9-year-old Owen Howkins, who suffers from a rare muscle disease, has had his life changed for the better, and has found new strength in a three-legged hero named Haatchi. Read the full story here >>

    Photo: Thinkstock

  • The Life of Pye: A Kitten as Determined as She is Adorable

    When Dr. Ruth MacPete first met her, Pye the kitten was unable to use her two back legs. But such was her doe-eyed determination that things would change drastically for Pye over the next two weeks.
    Read the full story of Pye here >>

    Photo: Dr. Ruth Macpete

  • Saving Shrek: Abused Dog Given New Life

    When Shrek stumbled upon a Canadian farm one rainy, cold day — fur matted and filthy — it was impossible to tell what animal he even was. Amazingly, such was Shrek’s enormous heart that he never lost the capacity to love.
    Click here for Shrek’s full story from Dr. Ernie Ward >>

    Photo: Dr. Ernie Ward

  • Rottweiler Holiday Surprises

    What started out as a busy day at the clinic turned into a day Dr. Nancy Kay would never forget when two abandoned Rottweilers arrived in the late stages of pregnancy. Read the full story here >>

    Photo: Thinkstock

  • New Study Supports a Special Bond between Dogs and Mothers

    New science supports the idea that the bonds mothers have with their dogs are not so different from the bonds mothers have with their children. Learn what happens inside a mother’s brain when she sees a photo of her loving pooch.
    Click here for the full story >>

    Photo: Thinkstock


17 Books for Dog Lovers

Sophie: The Incredible True Story of the Castaway Dog
By Emma Pearse
336 pages Da Capo Press

Sophie, a 3-year-old Australian cattle dog, was beloved by the Griffith family for her sweet, companionable nature. After falling overboard on a holiday boating trip, Sophie somehow managed to navigate the treacherous, predator-infested waters of the Great Barrier Reef she washed up on the shore of a wildlife reserve and used her canine instincts to get by on a tiny island populated by goats, birds and butterflies. This loyal-to-the-end loner continually spurned well-meaning advances from the island's human caretakers, presumably holding out for rescue by her owners—for more than four long months. Journalist Emma Pearse pieces together Sophie's harrowing ordeal from interviews with family members and island locals and tenderly describes the effect the dog's disappearance had on the heartbroken Griffiths. For dog owners who have ever gazed into the adoring eyes of their pet and felt like there were no bounds to what this creature would do for them. well, in affirming the unbreakable bond between humans and dogs, this book will confirm that hunch.
Corrie Pikul

Huck: The Remarkable True Story of How One Lost Puppy Taught a Family—and a Whole Town—About Hope and Happy Endings
By Janet Elder
304 pages Broadway

A breast cancer diagnosis convinces Manhattanite Janet Elder to finally let her son, Michael, get a puppy. She hopes the adorable red-haired toy poodle will give him something happy to focus on during her treatment. But Huck changed more than just one boy's life—he made Elder think differently about the people around her. Leaving Huck with her sister in suburban New Jersey, Elder and family head to Florida for vacation. When the nine-pound puppy runs away, they rush back to search for him—and find countless strangers who volunteer to help. There isn't much suspense about the outcome—but who cares? This dog book actually makes you feel better about people. — Karen Holt

Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love
By Larry Levin
224 pages Grand Central

Oogy is a dog who gets noticed—and not always in a good way. With the mass of scar tissue covering the mutilated left side of his face and his missing ear, strangers fail to see Oogy's inner beauty. Not so Larry Levin, who tells the inspiring story of how Oogy not only survived grotesque brutality—as a puppy he was bait for fighting dogs—but kept his gentle, trusting nature. Rescued barely alive in a police raid, Oogy, an Argentine Dogo (a little-known breed), goes to live with Levin and his family. Through Oogy, Levin learns to deal with his own, less visible wounds and observes the dog's effect on other emotionally scarred people: "If this dog can go through the hell he did and emerge capable of giving and generating as much love as he does, so can they." — Karen Holt

Born to Bark: My Adventures with an Irrepressible and Unforgettable Dog
By Stanley Coren
320 pages Free Press

Wife, husband, and terrier form an awkward triangle in this quirky blend of history, science, and personal experience by psychologist and trainer Stanley Coren (who also wrote The Intelligence of Dogs). His new book reveals how Coren's unruly terrier, Flint, increased the author's insight into canine-human interaction—while straining husband-wife relations. When Flint loudly awakens the couple at 3 A.M., Coren goes into historical detail explaining to his wife, Joan, that "terriers are bred to bark." She is not impressed. Nor is she amused when she wakes up to find Flint has deposited a dead mouse on her chest. Infuriatingly for Joan, Coren sees these and other antics as delightful proof of Flint's terrier-ness. The author has a lot to teach us about dogs. About marriage, not so much. — Karen Holt

Katie Up and Down the Hall: The True Story of How One Dog Turned Neighbors into a Family
By Glenn Plaskin
272 pages Center Street

In his heart-tugging memoir, Katie Up and Down the Hall: The True Story of How One Dog Turned Neighbors into a Family, Glenn Plaskin credits a gregarious cocker spaniel for with uniting the multigenerational residents of his apartment building. — Karen Holt

What a Difference a Dog Makes: Big Lessons on Life, Love, and Healing from a Small Pooch
By Dana Jennings
176 pages Doubleday

Fighting his own illness and caring for a sick son, Dana Jennings gets solace and inspiration from his miniature poodle, Bijou, in What a Difference a Dog Makes: Big Lessons on Life, Love, and Healing from a Small Pooch. Focus on the poignant story ignore the gimmicky chunks of doggie "wisdom." — Karen Holt

You Had Me at Woof: How Dogs Taught Me the Secrets of Happiness
By Julie Klam
240 pages Riverhead

A member of a dog rescue group, Julie Klam writes, "When I began to help give voice to these creatures . I felt the balance come into my own life" (page 53). Her warm, often funny memoir, You Had Me at Woof: How Dogs Taught Me the Secrets of Happiness, recalls the dogs she's helped save—and how they saved her. — Karen Holt

Dogs and the Women Who Love Them: Extraordinary True Stories of Loyalty, Healing, and Inspiration
By Allen and Linda Anderson
256 pages New World Library

The rescuing works both ways again in Allen and Linda Anderson's Collection, Dogs and the Women Who Love Them: Extraordinary True Stories of Loyalty, Healing, and Inspiration, as canines who've suffered abuse, neglect or misfortune seek and comfort humans who've endured the same. — Karen Holt

Through a Dog's Eyes
By Jennifer Arnold
240 pages Spiegel & Grau

In Through a Dog's Eyes, Jennifer Arnold, founder of the service-dog organization Canine Assistants, argues for a kinder, gentler approach to training. Hint: Shock collars are about as constructive as they sound. — Karen Holt

The Dog Who Couldn't Stop Loving: How Dogs Have Captured Our Hearts for Thousands of Years
By Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson
272 pages HarperCollins

Referencing exhaustive research—and his adorable golden lab, Benjy—Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson explores how canines and humans evolved together in The Dog Who Couldn't Stop Loving: How Dogs Have Captured Our Hearts for Thousands of Years. — Karen Holt

Dogs on Rocks
By William Wegman
136 pages A.S.A.P

Photographing the dogs outside is a little like fishing: Find a promising stretch, make a cast, catch and release, move on," writes William Wegman in his introduction to Dogs on Rocks. For fans of Wegman's iconic pooch portraits, these soulful, playful, and slyly humorous shots of Weimaraners (Wegman's signature breed) vamping and lolling on the harshly beautiful Maine coast offer all the satisfactions of landing a big catch. — Francine Prose

Mutts
By Sharon Montrose
120 pages Stewart

We're all for good breeding, but the canine models in Sharon Montrose's gorgeously photographed Mutts have something even better—star power. What else does a media hound need, except great bones?

Nose Down, Eyes Up
By Merrill Markoe
320 pages Villard

Gil, the growly, slovenly, haplessly divorced fellow in Merrill Markoe's Nose Down, Eyes Up, is clueless about human relationships frankly, he's a bit of an animal. Listening in as his favorite dog, Jimmy, counsels his fellow canines on life and love ("It's the big emotion behind snack time"), Gil bumbles through comic misadventures with his bouncy girlfriend, Sara, and his sexpot ex-wife, Eden. Read this novel for its nose-to-the-ground wisdom, its unsentimental take on family, and for the funniest, furriest pack of jokesters this side of the Marx Brothers. — Cathleen Medwick

Our Story Begins: New and Selected Short Stories
By Tobias Wolff
400 pages Knopf

Among the new pieces in Tobias Wolff's intensely pleasurable collection Our Story Begins: New and Selected Stories is a brief, simple tale about a man, John, walking a dog. The dog, Victor, was John's wife's now his wife is dead and walking him has fallen to John. Victor grieves for Grace, his lost owner, but on the walks he comes alive: "Grief could not deaden the scent of fallow deer and porcupine, of rabbits and rats and the little gray foxes that ate them." After an ominous encounter with a large, threatening dog, John imagines a strange dialogue in which Victor upbraids him for not loving Grace as much as he, Victor, has loved her. "I loved her with all my heart," John has Victor say. "You missed out on being forgiven," John replies. This story has so much of what has made Tobias Wolff one of the best story writers of his time: his irony and wit, his always present tenderness, his deep conscience (John is, through Victor, grieving too, and cataloging his sins), his willingness to hold on his tongue even the most bitter truths. This collection provides a clean, swift tour through Wolff's famous earlier stories ("In the Garden of the North American Martyrs," "Bullet in the Brain") and ends with ten new ones, each a more polished gem than the last. This is the work of a rare writer who understands that great stories do not seek finality and "closure" but something more accelerated than that—a kind of breathtaking expansion. — Vince Passaro

Dog Years
By Mark Doty
256 pages HarperCollins

"To choose to live with a dog," Mark Doty writes, "is to agree to participate in a long process of interpretation." Life-affirming, lyrical, and profoundly affecting, Dog Years is the record of that interpretive journey, from the moment Doty first sees Arden—one of two retrievers that would challenge, shape, and eventually save his life—in a small cage at the animal shelter. "This is the point where love, the very beginning of love, shades right out of language's grasp." A few years later, as his partner, Wally, faces death, Doty returns to the shelter and adopts Beau, whose "absolute openness of regard" enchants him. In the years to come, it is Beau who becomes Doty's vessel, "himself, yes, plain, ordinary, and perfect in that sloppy dog way—but he carried something else for me, too, which was my will to live. I had given it to him to carry for me, like some king in a fairy tale. " Grief, hope, love, and art Emily Dickinson, 9/11, depression, renewal, and the part in each of us we must "let. be abandoned by God." Only Mark Doty could have written a dog book (100 percent soul, 0 percent sentimentality) that covers so much ground without ever abandoning its four-footed subjects. "It isn't that one wants to live for the sake of a dog, exactly," he reasons, "but that dogs show you why you might want to." — Pam Houston

Woof!
By Lee Montgomery
256 pages Viking

Another book about dogs? More slobber and soulfulness and uncurbed enthusiasm? Yes, because Woof!, edited by Lee Montgomery, is an especially fetching collection of essays (including two, by Abigail Thomas and Jim Shepard, first published in O) that proves you can't have too many lessons in ferocious devotion. Wolf down Anna Keesey's growling "Let's Go, My Love" and Chris Adrian's "A Good Creature"—as soulful as they come. — Cathleen Medwick


6 Spooky Ghost Stories Featuring Friendly Dogs

Everyone loves a good spooky story now and again, especially around Halloween. But not every story features only humans who are doing the haunting. Many true tales of spectral dogs have been told around the campfire throughout history, and in the spirit of the holiday we’ve compiled a list of the six spookiest (and friendliest!) ones! So curl up with your pup and get ready for some hair-raising stories!

1. The Blue Dog Legend
Said to be the oldest ghost story in American history, the legend of Blue Dog dates back to the 1700’s in Port Tobacco, Maryland. Here, legend has it that late one night a man named Charles Thomas Sims entered a tavern with his faithful hound, Blue Dog. Sims proceeded to brag to the locals about his wealth in gold and ownership of a deed to a rather large estate. After a long night of drinking, Sims and his dog departed only to be stalked by a man named Henry Hanos, who wanted to rob Sims of his gold. A fight ensued on Rose Hill Road and ultimately both Sims and Blue Dog were killed. Hanos then buried Sim’s gold under a large holly tree on the same road where he planned to retrieve it once the dust had settled. However, when he returned to the tree some three days later, he was scared off by the ghost of Blue Dog who had returned to protect his master’s treasure. To this day, the locals say that every February 8th on the anniversary of the robbery, Blue Dog can be heard howling by the tree and waiting for his master to return for his treasure. Now that’s a loyal dog!

2. Preston the Boxer
In their book Ghost Dogs of the South, award-winning folklorists Randy Russell and Janet Barnett tell the tale of Preston the boxer, a friendly ghost dog who haunts the streets of the Bellmont Hillsboro neighborhood in Nashville every Halloween night. The story goes that one Halloween almost fifty years ago, Preston was walking with a group of trick-or-treaters when one little boy stopped to pick up candy that he had dropped in the road. The boy’s older sister went to pull him off the street as a car was fast approaching, but Preston the boxer got there first. He knocked the child out of the way of the vehicle and saved him, but was unfortunately hit himself by the car. After making sure her brother was okay, the girl went to look for Preston but mysteriously his body was never found. Now, locals say that every year on Halloween, trick-or-treaters who wander too close to the road have reported being bumped back onto the sidewalk by the gentle ghost of Preston, who walks diligently up and down the neighborhood until all the lights go out. What a good boy indeed!

3. Poogan the Porch Dog
Many southern dogs like to lounge on porches in the heat of summer, and Poogan was no exception. Locals of an affluent neighborhood in Charleston, South Carolina will tell you that back in the 1970’s, the most well-loved local of all was a street dog named Poogan who wandered from house to house eating whatever he was given and napping on any porch he could find. His favorite porch was that of the large, commodious mansion at 72 Queen Street where the owners would feed him and treat him well. However, one day they moved and sold their home, leaving Poogan behind to sleep on their porch. Eventually their home was turned into a restaurant where Poogan the street dog was still allowed to nap and given the job of greeting costumers as they entered. Poogan died of natural causes in 1979 and the restaurant still stands as a monument to him. However, many diners have reported hearing barking as they enter the restaurant and feeling a small dog brush against their legs as they eat. Some employees have also spotted Poogan still sleeping in his spot on the porch on hot, summer afternoons, as if nothing has changed since his days as a friendly street dog. If you’re ever in Charleston, South Carolina, we know what restaurant to recommend!

4. Two Ghostly Hounds
This story comes from the mouth of actor Christopher Knight himself, who played Peter Brady in the hit show The Brady Bunch. Knight tells a tale of how one night in-between filming for the show, he was staying at the house of his friend Mike Lookinland’s grandparents when he was visited by the ghosts of two hound dogs. They appeared at the foot of his bed while he was sleeping, and he awoke to feel their breath on his face. They were not menacing or scary, but rather regal and calm. Knight says they were also accompanied by a little girl who called to them from the doorway until they turned and left. The next morning, Knight mentioned the dogs to his friend’s grandparents who took him into the study and showed him a portrait of two hound dogs who used to live at the property. They looked identical to the dogs he saw in his bedroom and Knight remains convinced to this day that they were checking in on him while he slept. Oddly enough, no conclusion about the little girl was ever made, but we suppose that’s a tale for a different day!

5. The Hummelbaugh Howl
Gettysburg, Pennsylvania is allegedly one of the most haunted places in America thanks to its role in the American civil war. During that time, the Hummelbaugh House stood as a union field hospital and is known for being the place where Confederate Brigadier General William Barksdale died after becoming wounded in battle. Legend has it that after his burial in Gettysburg, his wife traveled to the town with his most loyal hunting hound to exhume his remains and have them brought back to their home in Mississippi. However, upon arriving at his burial sight, Barksdale’s hound flopped down beside his grave and began howling and crying. Barksdale’s wife attempted to move the dog but no matter what she did or said, the dog would not budge. All through the night the hound sat by the grave and howled and even after the remains were exhumed, the dog stayed. Barksdale’s wife chose to leave without her husband’s loyal companion and in the days following, locals say no one could get the dog to move, eat or even drink. Eventually, the hound dog passed away next to its master’s grave and to this day, visitors of the Hummelbaugh House say they can still hear howling coming from the cemetery late at night, especially on the anniversary of Barksdale’s death. If you’re ever in Gettysburg, don’t miss the opportunity to hear the howl of the Hummelbaugh hound!

6. The Return of Spot
In an interview done for the media-brand, animal activist group The DoDo, one woman named Ellie Thomas tells the heartwarming tale of her family’s loyal dog Spot. Spot was a small black and white terrier mix who was rescued by Thomas and her husband after they attended a street fair. Spot was brought back to their new home, raised alongside their children, captured in many home videos, and was described as the perfect family pet. After many years with the Thomas’, Spot passed away and was buried on the hill behind their home. Some years later after the Thomas family had moved to a different house not too far from their original, they ran into the new owners of their old house who told them a truly amazing tale. The new couple asked the Thomas’ if they had ever owned a small black and white dog, for it was often seen standing at the end of the hallway by the bedrooms. Amazed, the Thomas family was convinced that this was the spirit of their beloved dog Spot, who was such a part of their lives that it seems like he just couldn’t let them go. According to the new family, several people have seen Spot on multiple different occasions just standing in the hallway and watching, as if looking over all those who reside in the house. Just like in life, Ellie Thomas knows Spot is making sure she and her family are safe by returning to the home where they all once lived so perfectly together. Good dog, Spot!

What do you think? Do you believe in ghostly dogs returning to those whom they loved in life, or do you imagine these are all just legends? We’ll let you and your pup decide this Halloween and, as always, we hope you have a safe and spooky holiday!


82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

1. I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown

  • Release Date: 2003
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: TV-G
  • See it here

2. The Dog Who Saved Christmas

  • Release Date: 2009
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

3. The Dog Who Saved Christmas Vacation

  • Release Date: 2010
  • Genre: Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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4. 12 Christmas Wishes For My Dog

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Fantasy, Comedy
  • Rating: TV-G
  • See it here

5. An All Dogs Christmas Carol

  • Release Date: 1998
  • Genre: Musical, Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

6. 12 Dog Days Till Christmas

  • Release Date: 2014
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

7. A Dog Named Christmas

  • Release Date: 2009
  • Genre: Drama
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

8. Little Spirit: Christmas in New York

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Fantasy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

9. Beethoven’s Christmas Adventure

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Fantasy, Comedy
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

10. The Search for Santa Paws

  • Release Date: 2010
  • Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

11. The 12 Dogs of Christmas

  • Release Date: 2005
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

12. 12 Dogs Of Christmas: Great Puppy Rescue

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

13. A Doggone Christmas

  • Release Date: 2016
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

14. A Charlie Brown Christmas

  • Release Date: 1965
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

15. Charlie Brown’s Christmas Tales

  • Release Date: 2002
  • Genre: Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

16. Christmas Angel

  • Release Date: 2009
  • Genre: Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

17. Lost Christmas

  • Release Date: 2014
  • Genre: Drama
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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18. Christmas Tail

  • Release Date: 2014
  • Genre: Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

19. Up On The Woof Top

  • Release Date: 2015
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

20. One Christmas Eve

  • Release Date: 2017
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

21. Santa Buddies

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Adventure, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

22. Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Adventure, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

23. Chilly Christmas

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Drama, Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

24. Adventures of Bailey: Christmas Hero

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

25. Santa’s Dog

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

26. Nine Dog Christmas: The Movie

  • Release Date:
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

27. Santa Stole Our Dog!

  • Release Date: Preorder December 2017
  • Genre: Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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28. A Puppy For Christmas

  • Release Date: 2017
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

29. Hercules Saves Christmas

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

30. A Bulldog for Christmas

  • Release Date: 2016
  • Genre: Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

31. The Dog Who Saved the Holidays

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

32. Kipper: Let It Snow

  • Release Date: 2004
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: TV-Y
  • See it here

33. Benji’s Very Own Christmas Story

  • Release Date: 1978
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

34. The Snowman & The Snowdog

  • Release Date: 2016
  • Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

35. Operation Dalmatian: Holiday

  • Release Date: 2007
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

36. Alone for Christmas

  • Release Date: 2013
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

37. A Golden Christmas: A Tail of Puppy Love

  • Release Date: 2010
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

38. A Golden Christmas: The Second Tail

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

39. Scoot and Kassie’s Christmas Adventure

  • Release Date: 2013
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

40. Christmas All Over Again

  • Release Date: 2016
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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41. A Dogwalker’s Christmas Tale

  • Release Date: 2014
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Rating: TV-G
  • See it here

42. Home For Christmas: A Golden Christmas

  • Release Date: 2013
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

43. Golden Winter

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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44. Santa’s Best Friend

  • Release Date: 2013
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

45. A Belle for Christmas

  • Release Date: 2014
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

46. The Christmas Shepherd

  • Release Date: 2017
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

47. Spunky’s First Christmas

  • Release Date: 2006
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

48. Paw Patrol: Pups Save Christmas

  • Release Date: 2015
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

49. Spot: Spot’s Magical Christmas

  • Release Date: 2010
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

50. What-a-Mess: Christmas Mess

  • Release Date: 2005
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

51. Poochini – The Christmas Tree

  • Release Date:
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

52. The Magic of Christmas II

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

53. A Magical Cartoon Christmas

  • Release Date: 2004
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

54. Scooby-Doo: Winter Wonderdog

  • Release Date: 2010
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

55. Christmas with Tucker

  • Release Date: 2013
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

56. The 3 Dogateers

  • Release Date: 2014
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: TV-Y
  • See it here

57. Shelby: A Magical Holiday Tail

  • Release Date: 2015
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

58. My Dog’s Miracle (Cinnamon)

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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59. A Christmas Wedding Tail

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

60. Beverly Hills Christmas

  • Release Date: 2015
  • Genre: Fantasy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

61. 101 Dalmatians

  • Release Date: 1996
  • Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

62. Look Who’s Talking Now

  • Release Date: 1993
  • Genre: Romance, Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG-13
  • See it here

63. How the Grinch Stole Christmas

  • Release Date: 2000
  • Genre: Fantasy, Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

64. Olive the Other Reindeer

  • Release Date: 2003
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

65. Have Yourself A Goofy Little Christmas

  • Release Date: 2008
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

66. The Nightmare Before Christmas

  • Release Date: 1993
  • Genre: Fantasy, Musical, Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

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67. Lady and the Tramp

  • Release Date: 1955
  • Genre: Romance, Adventure, Comedy, Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

68. Lassie: A Christmas Tale

  • Release Date: 2006
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: PG
  • See it here

69. Davey and Goliath’s Snowboard Christmas

  • Release Date: 2005
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

70. The Dog Who Stopped the War

  • Release Date: 2006
  • Genre: Foreign Films, Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

71. I’ll Be Home For Christmas

  • Release Date: 2017
  • Genre: Drama
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

72. Ziggy’s Gift

  • Release Date: 2005
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

73. Dot and Spots Magical Christmas

  • Release Date: 1996
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

74. Snow Buddies

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

75. A Dog for Christmas

  • Release Date: 2015
  • Genre: Comedy, Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs

" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.everydaydogmom.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/6.jpg?fit=221%2C300&ssl=1" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/www.everydaydogmom.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/6.jpg?fit=450%2C611&ssl=1" loading="lazy" src="https://i1.wp.com/www.everydaydogmom.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/6.jpg?resize=450%2C611&ssl=1" alt="82 Heartwarming Christmas Movies With Dogs" width="450" height="611" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/www.everydaydogmom.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/6.jpg?w=450&ssl=1 450w, https://i1.wp.com/www.everydaydogmom.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/6.jpg?resize=221%2C300&ssl=1 221w" sizes="(max-width: 450px) 100vw, 450px" data-recalc-dims="1">

76. Darling Companion

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Drama, Romance, Comedy
  • Rating: PG-13
  • See it here

77. The Gingham Dog and the Calico Cat

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

78. What’s New Scooby-Doo, Vol. 4 – Merry Scary Holiday

  • Release Date: 2004
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

79. Scooby-Doo: 13 Spooky Tales- Holiday Chills and Thrills

  • Release Date: 2012
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • See it here

80. Happiness is…Peanuts – Snow Days

  • Release Date: 2011
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

81. It’s Christmastime Again, Charlie Brown

  • Release Date: 1992
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

82. Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You

  • Release Date: Pre-release 2017
  • Genre: Kids & Family
  • Rating: G
  • See it here

As you can see, this list includes a little something for everyone. There are movies everyone has heard of (like Lady & The Tramp), as well as some that no one’s heard of (hello, Ziggy’s Gift). Whether you’ve got small kids in the family, or it’s just you, your someone special, and your dog, there’s a movie on this list that is sure to bring a little holiday cheer.

Do you have a favorite Christmas movie that features dogs? I’d love to hear all about it in a comment below, or stop by my Facebook page and join in the conversation there!

Thanks to our friends at Top Dog Tips for sharing this amazing infographic!


Heartwarming Stories About the Best Gifts We Ever Received

Illustration: Ryo Takemasa

Illustration: Ryo Takemasa

1. I was living in California when I found out my grandmother had congestive heart failure and wasn’t expected to pull through. She was one of my best friends—I’d lived with her when my dad was overseas in the army. I always felt like her arms were around me, that I could say anything to her.

I made it to Illinois in time to be there the day she died. When I went to her home to go through her belongings, I found a glass canning jar of pickled beets in the fridge with my name written on the label. I hadn’t been back there for some time, but I think she somehow knew I’d be with her at the end of her life. I sat down, crying, and ate the whole jar.
—Judy Bissey, O reader, San Rafael, California

2. After my first year with my boyfriend, I expected a decent birthday gift—maybe a nice dinner or a cute jacket from my favorite store. So when he handed me what felt like a wrapped piece of paper, my heart sank. With fake enthusiasm cued up, I unwrapped a two-pocket folder. Inside were official documents for a star he’d purchased for me—and named Martine. That was the name given to my mother in a Quebec orphanage before she was adopted in the U.S. and renamed Judy. It’s also my middle name. My mother died when I was 16, and I’d spent a few embarrassing nights tearfully telling my boyfriend stories about her. Even though a piece of paper can’t bring her back, the night sky has felt different ever since—like she’s up there sparkling in all her eternal glory.
—Ashley Sepanski, O contributing web producer

Illustration: Ryo Takemasa

3. When I was about 13, my mom thought I was spending too much time in the house reading, so she signed up my sister and me for Hawaiian dance lessons. Though we lived in Michigan, we took to them immediately in fact, over the next few years we expanded our repertoire to include Maori, Samoan, and Tahitian dance, too. I think we loved the costumes almost as much as the dancing itself the Tahitian costumes in particular were fantastic. They were expensive, though, and we knew our parents—a barber and an office manager—would never be able to afford them. But about two years into our lessons, my sister and I ran into the living room on Christmas morning, and there they were under the tree: ankle-length, wheat-colored straw skirts, mine with tiny shells and fringe tassels stitched to the waistband, and tall, elaborately embroidered headdresses. Our parents, knowing we’d flip, were waiting with their camera poised, and caught us with our eyes—and mouths!—wide open.
—Balinda DeSantis, O reader, Lake Orion, Michigan

4. Growing up, I adored Christmas: the most glittery, most magical time of the year. But my stepfather made the holidays as erratic as his moods. One year he bought me an armful of stuffed animals the next year we didn’t have a tree or presents at all. I’m married now, and my husband and his family are Christmas crazy—my mother-in-law still has ornaments he made in second grade. For my first Christmas with them, she bought me a set of traditional German bride ornaments. There’s a sparkly teapot that represents hospitality, a shiny red heart for love, and my favorite, a blue bird you clip onto a tree branch—it symbolizes joy. Last year my husband accidentally dropped the bird, and it shattered. I never realized how much it meant to me until it broke. I told him the set symbolized the normalcy and the family I craved as a kid and now finally had. A few weeks later, I unwrapped a new bird that looked like my old one. Every year it brings me unspeakable joy to place each ornament in its special spot on the tree.
—Jennifer Chen, writer and editor

Illustration: Ryo Takemasa

5. This winter my husband surprised me by cleaning all six of the bird feeders in our backyard. It’s a task I hate, especially when they get gunky from the rain. I came home, and there they were—shiny, clean, and dry—waiting for me to fill them with seed, my favorite part.
—Janet Yano, O Northwest advertising director

6. Back in 2004, I was at the University of Vermont, thousands of miles from my family in Johannesburg, and severely depressed. I was grieving my mom’s death, but I was so determined to succeed in school that none of my friends even knew I was struggling. One day after work, my roommate relayed a phone message. When I tearfully called the number, my paternal aunt answered. She sensed that what I needed was home. Though she’s an educator and didn’t earn heaps of money, she found a way to buy me a plane ticket back to Johannesburg for winter break.

She gave me that gift without asking what was wrong or why I was crying, and for three weeks I had the pleasure of eating home-cooked meals, playing with my baby cousins, and traveling in my home country to refuel my spirit and replenish my heart. There are still many days when I think back and realize that with one act of kindness, my aunt allowed me to experience joy again.
—“Tepsii” Thendo Tshikororo, O reader, Pretoria, South Africa

Illustration: Ryo Takemasa

7.There was a brief period when my siblings and I came home from elementary school to find small presents on our beds—our mother called them happies. One time there was a sticker book and three or four sheets of stickers, the good kind, that were sparkly or puffy or scratch-and-sniff. My favorites were the shiniest, most delicious things: ice cream cones, squishy and pink sundaes topped with whipped cream and a single cherry. We didn’t know what had sparked the happies, but now that I’m older, I realize they must have arrived around the time when money became a concern. Those small gifts were proof that things were okay.
—Mary Miller, author of, most recently, Last Days Of California

8. The summer I turned 16, my father gave me his refurbished ’69 Chevy Malibu convertible. Cherry red, chrome accents, V8 engine—a gift wasted on me at that age. What did I know about classic cars? The important thing was that Hannah and I could drive around Tucson with the top down.

Hannah was my best friend, a year younger but much taller, almost 5'10". “Hannah’s a knockout,” my mother always said. And sure enough, that summer she signed with a modeling agency. She was already doing catalog work and some runway.

A month after my birthday, Hannah and I went to the movies. On the way home we stopped at the McDonald’s drive-through, putting the fries on the seat between us to share. “Let’s ride around awhile,” I said. It was a clear night, oven-warm, full moon slung low over the desert. Taking a curve too fast, I hit a patch of dirt and fishtailed. What happened next is hazy: I plowed through a neighbor’s landscape wall and drove into a full-grown palm. The front wheels came to rest halfway up the tree trunk.

French fries on the floor, the dash, and my lap. An impossible amount of blood on Hannah’s face, flaps of skin hanging into her eyes. They took us in separate ambulances. In the ER, my parents spoke quietly: Best plastic surgeon in the city. End of her modeling career. We’d been wearing lap belts, but the car didn’t have shoulder harnesses. I’d cracked my cheekbone on the steering wheel Hannah’s forehead had split wide open on the dash. What would I say to her?

When her mother, Sharon, came into my hospital room, I started to cry, bracing myself for her anger. I deserve it, I thought. She sat beside me and took my hand. “I rear-ended my best friend when I was your age,” she said. “I totaled her car and mine.” “I’m so sorry” was all I could get out. “You’re both alive,” she said. “The rest is window dressing.” I started to protest and Sharon stopped me. “I forgive you. Hannah will, too.”

Hannah’s stitches looked like an intricate road map tattooed on her forehead. She never modeled again. But Sharon’s forgiveness allowed Hannah and me to get back in the car together that summer, to stay friends throughout high school and college, to be in each other’s weddings, and to watch my four teenagers fawn over her three younger children. I think of her gift of forgiveness every time I’m tempted to resent someone for a perceived wrong. And whenever I see Hannah. The scars are so faded, no one else would notice, but in the sunlight I can still see the faint shimmer just below her hairline—for me, after all these years, an imprint of grace.
—Jamie Quatro, author of, most recently, I Want To Show You More


Watch the video: This Race Called Life - a beautiful inspirational short-story (July 2021).