- Each guest who wishes to participate must contribute a gift. The gift is for the DOGS. Everyone sits or stands in roughly a circle around the pile of gifts. It’s nice to wrap your gift in such a manner that the contents cannot be determined with a simple inspection.
- Slips of paper are prepared that are equal to the number of gifts with clearly written numbers. We will be sure to distinguish 6 from 9, 1 from 7. Each participating guest draws a number and holds onto that slip of paper.
- On the first turn, the guest with paper slip #1 chooses a gift, opens it, and all admire it (“ooo”, “ahhh”).
- On the second turn, the guest with paper slip #2 gets the choice of “stealing” any unwrapped gift (#1’s) or choosing a wrapped one. If #2 steals #1’s gift, then #1 must open a wrapped gift.
- On the third turn, the guest with paper slip #3 gets the choice of “stealing” any unwrapped gift (#1’s or #2’s) or choosing a wrapped one.
The game continues based on the following:
- If a gift is stolen from you, you can steal a gift (within limits, described below), or open a wrapped one.
- The turn proceeds until a wrapped gift is chosen.
- A gift cannot be immediately stolen back from the guest who just stole it.
- The fourth “owner” of a gift gets to keep it. That is, the gift is “dead” after it has been stolen three times.
- “Owners” of live gifts (ones that can be stolen) must keep them visible and hold them up when requested.
- The gift exchange ends when the last wrapped gift is opened.