Experts say it shouldn't be done casually
It may seem like a cute gift for the kids, but it can turn ugly within weeks after Christmas.
The Humane Society of Houston asks us to make sure before we casually give a puppy or kitten as a gift.
"It's a huge responsibility and it's a huge commitment. You're committing to the lifetime of that animal."
Monica Schmidt says every year lots of dogs and cats wind up at the shelter.
"Roughly around February, maybe end of January we start seeing some of those animals coming in -- whether they adopted through us or they acquired an animal they were given as a gift."
Schmidt says the family needs to have a serious discussion about responsibility before giving the kids such a gift. She says if it goes wrong, it'll wind up being the parents' responsibility.