If you are thinking of getting a new puppy for Christmas -Please think again!
I’m sure that you must have heard the slogan “A Dog is for life, not just for Christmas” but did you know that this very cause supporting animal welfare, has been around for over 40 years? You can well ask why it’s just not acceptable these days to give a gift of a puppy, usually a very expensive present, especially at Christmas time.
The gift of a tiny puppy
Everyone loves a gorgeous, fluffy bundle of mischievousness, but after one or two months’ time, the novelty will begin to wear off, when the problems begin to arise. Giving someone a surprise pet isn’t usually a good plan. New puppies can be a lot of hard work, and with the prospect of a further 10-15 years of unwanted responsibility, they may not be welcomed. Any gift given to children at Christmas, is sometimes considered to be just another toy, or a commodity, and not as a new family member that requires a large amount of time and commitment. Just like all their other presents, children will soon tire of their new puppy when they realise they are responsible for playing, feeding, walking and the picking up poop routines.
Each year, hundreds of dogs are left at with pet charities, rescue centres, or even abandoned and left to fend for themselves. A dog is often less welcome in their new homes, once their new owners realises the amount of responsibility and effort that having a dog in their household involves.
- A dog needs to be cared for every day
- All dogs will grow old
- At some point, all dogs will become ill
- Different breeds have different temperaments and needs
- Can you afford the costs of feeding and healthcare
Do not buy from or support puppy breeding farms
The festive season brings misery for many dogs, with the unrelenting puppy breeding activities, when many parent dogs endure a terrible life in puppy farm conditions. These puppy breeding businesses thrive on impulsive shoppers and is a very lucrative earner for dog breeders as they increase their breeding programmes just to have a large puppy stock for Christmas sales.
Give the gift of a rescue dog
Obviously, if the family have given plenty of consideration to have a new dog in their family, and made the decision that now is the right time, rather than heaping guilt on their shoulders for wanting a new pet, perhaps the way forward is to suggest that rehoming a rescue dog is a more ethical route to take. Giving a rescue dog a gift of a new home, is the absolutely best choice to make at Christmas time.
Many people worry that rescue dogs will have serious development and behaviour problems, the reason that they have been rejected from their previous homes, yet this is usually far from the truth. The majority of rescued dogs are usually abandoned as a result of human circumstances and not because of anything in particular to do with the dogs themselves. In fact, many rescue pets repay their new owners with amazingly, faithful companionship despite their previous rejections.
An alternative Christmas Gift
If you really are set on having a new puppy, please resist the temptation to buy one during the Christmas period. Buy a new dog bed, or a feeding bowl and some dog treats, to let the recipient know that a new canine friend will be arriving very soon. If you want to give a wonderful, thoughtful gift to any dog lover in your life, why not consider donating to an animal shelter, or sponsoring a rescued dog, in their name.