Santa Paws Is Coming: ‘Christmutts’ Toy Drive Brings Some Holiday Cheer to Chained Dogs

For Immediate Release:
December 12, 2023

Brittney Williams 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va.

To make the holidays merrier for local canines this December, PETA’s elves will be collecting and distributing toys to neglected dogs who are kept chained or penned outdoors 24/7 and know little comfort and joy—and compassionate people everywhere can help by donating online or dropping toys off at participating businesses throughout Hampton Roads.

PETA fieldworker with dog holding toy champagne bottle

White dog named Brassy with chew toy

Ivy (top) and Brassy (bottom) with donated toys from PETA. Photos: PETA

“Dogs kept outdoors are deprived of all the things they need for a happy, healthy life, including mental and physical stimulation, but a toy to play with can help brighten a lonely, bored, and frustrated dog’s day,” says PETA Vice President Emily Allen. “PETA encourages the community to join us and be an angel for chained dogs this winter by donating to our ‘Christmutts’ toy drive and to always keep their companion animals indoors with them, where they belong.”

Every day, PETA’s fieldworkers visit dogs across southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina who are chained or penned outside in all weather extremes, confined to the same few feet of space day in and day out. PETA provides fresh food, clean water, sturdy doghouses lined with straw, flea treatment, affection, and playtime—often the only interaction these dogs receive.

Dog toys and treats can be donated using this Amazon link. Hampton Roads residents can also drop off toys through the holidays at any of these locations:

  • Boutique on the Creek (21088 Marina Rd., Ste. 100, Carrollton)
  • CLTRE (208 E. Main St., Norfolk)
  • Elation Brewing (5104 Colley Ave., Norfolk)
  • Ghent Veterinary Hospital (939 W. 21st, Norfolk)
  • Kahiau’s Bakery & Cafe (3712 S. Plaza Trl., Virginia Beach)
  • Muddy Paws (3700 Hampton Blvd., Norfolk)
  • My Vegan Sweet Tooth (3916 Virginia Beach Blvd., Virginia Beach)
  • Nail 911 (1827 E. Little Creek Rd., Norfolk)
  • Naro Expanded Cinema (1507 Colley Ave., Norfolk)
  • Salty Paws (2104 Pleasure House Rd., Ste. F, Virginia Beach)
  • Zeke’s (800 Granby St., Norfolk; 616 Norfolk Ave., Virginia Beach; and 517 Kempsville Rd. Ste. E, Chesapeake)

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, or Instagram.

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