DOGS Trust Manchester have raised awareness of the increased number of abandoned dogs they expect to receive following the Christmas period.
Each January, many people wake up to realise that their decision to bring a puppy into their homes for Christmas wasn’t such a good idea after all.
It is this time of year when dog re-homing centers brace themselves for yet another influx of abandoned dogs.
This year, Dogs Trust Manchester have released a video called “Why I left you” featuring the bizarre reasons people have decided to give up their four-legged friends.
Dogs Trust Manchester received 650 calls between the 26th of December 2016 and the 28th of January 2017, which equates to an average of 20 handovers a day. Nationally, they’ve received 3,596 calls which means a call almost every five minutes.
Julia Youd, from the Dogs Trust Manchester explained that, sadly, the charity’s slogan – ‘A dog is for life, not just for Christmas’ – is just as relevant now as it was 40 years ago:
“People do leave their older dogs behind to make room for a new puppy around Christmas. Then, in January everybody has to go back to work, the children go back to school and it all just becomes too difficult. It’s then they realize the time commitment and the financial commitment that it takes care for a dog properly. “
A new survey which overlooked 2000 dog owners in the North-West reveals that 25% of them spend less than two weeks researching before buying a dog and 11% confessed to buying a dog simply because it was a cute accessory.
The survey also revealed that 15% of people admit to buying or receiving a dog as a Christmas gift. The dog owning public also significantly underestimated the financial cost of dog ownership with 37% of people believing their dog will cost them less than the actual cost of £10,000 during its lifetime.
Dawn Bishop, Dogs Trust Manchester Manager, explained: “Dogs Trust take in thousands of much loved dogs from heartbroken owners who sadly find themselves unable to continue to care for their dogs due to unavoidable changes in their circumstances.
“It’s particularly hard for staff when they see the other end of the spectrum – dogs handed in simply because their owner’s bought them on a whim and consider them little more than toys to be discarded when the novelty wears off.”
“Dogs aren’t disposable commodities; they are a huge commitment and should be for life.”
According to Dogs Trust, another important aspect people need to consider before getting a dog is the breed they choose to make sure it’s compatible with their lifestyle. How big is your family, and what kind of house do you live in or have you owned a dog before – are all questions that also need to be taken into account.
Dawn Bishop added: “It is so sad that we receive so many calls from people wanting to hand over their dogs as dogs deserve to be treated as a member of the family. They aren’t disposable commodities; they are a huge commitment and should be for life.”
Find out more about how to choose the right dog for you here.