TREAT ME: Buddy the pug meets Santa at the Pet Barn fundraiser for the Rabbit hopping club.
TREAT ME: Buddy the pug meets Santa at the Pet Barn fundraiser for the Rabbit hopping club. Doug Eaton

I want dog-choccies and a squeaky chew toy and maybe a cat

BUDDY the two year-old pug had a very special visit from Santa on the weekend.

Wagging his tail and giving old man Claus some extra big licks, he was in doggy heaven - except for one little detail.

It was an important detail which involved a dog's favourite pastime: eating.

Santa was under strict instructions from Buddy's owners, Karen and Trevor Kendall, not to give the lapdog any Christmas treats.

Weighing in at 14.8kg, big-boned Buddy is a tad beyond the ideal pug weight of about 10kg.

With dinner a paltry 50g serve of kangaroo mince and grated carrot, this plump but oh-so-cute puggy could be forgiven for trying to scavenge some extra goodies under the Christmas dinner table.

"It's harder on us than it is on him, but the vet has said 'no treats!'," Mr Kendall said.

"Most dogs don't eat greens, but he has learnt how to!"

Buddy was one of several pets whose owners took time out of their busy pre-Christmas schedule to see their animals get a taste of Santa in Lismore on Saturday.

The event was masterminded by members of the Northern NSW rabbit hopping club as a fundraiser, where owners could buy professional photos of their pets with Santa for a donation worth a few dollars.

Santa sitting with all sorts of furry animals was drawing plenty of curiosity from passing shoppers at Lismore's Pet barn. Some even dropped what they were doing to race home and get their pets.

Other photogenic pets included orphaned mouse Fang - rescued from Grafton and adopted by bunny lover and president of the club Fran Boston - who apparently now believes he's a rabbit.

Then there was Kit, one of Mrs Boston's many bunnies, and the "founding rabbit" of the Northern NSW rabbit hopping club.

Mrs Boston is on a mission to educate animal lovers that rabbits can be just like dogs except they don't bite, kill wildlife, or smell.

"I take Kit everywhere; he goes shopping with me," Ms Boston said.

"He's toilet-trained, he hops on a leash and he's very affectionate."

"He'll never be a star athlete like Robo (her best jumper, a Netherlands Dwarf rabbit capable of vaulting his tiny body 50cm in a single bound); he's more of an all-rounder."



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