Monday, 2 December 2013

A dog is for life not just for Christmas.

A dog is for life not just for Christmas is the famous slogan created by Clarissa Baldwin in 1978 by the then head of PR for Dogs Trust and now the CEO, 35 years on and the campaign is still just as strong today educating a new generation.

Every year hundreds of thousands of children plead for the latest fad or top toy on the market, only to discard them a few weeks after Christmas when the novelty wears off. Unfortunately, the same is also true with dogs.

Looking through the small ads in the local paper and also on the Internet I've seen puppies advertised with the heading ready in time for Christmas, stay well clear if anyone is targeting the Christmas market with puppies they can't be trusted and could very easily be be puppy farmers wanting to make a quick few quid.

These days, the vast majority of dog re homing centres, responsible breeders and many privately owned pet shops place a complete blanket ban on adopting or buying a dog from them during December. This has gone some way towards stopping the acquisition of dogs for Christmas gifts on a whim by people who have not thought things through or done the necessary research. However, as it is by no means impossible to find a dog for sale at Christmas time, a number of dogs do still end up abandoned or surrendered to shelters in the early part of the New Year nevertheless. However, these numbers have reduced dramatically due to the advent of the ‘no-adoption December’ policies, and the highlighting of the reasons behind it.

Introducing a puppy into a new home is never a good idea with all the festivities going on and visitors coming and going, the pup is going to end up very stressed. On average a puppy sleeps for around 17 hours a day to help aid there growth and development, a puppy could easily run out of an open door, be stood on or eat something it shouldn't, plus how are you going to go on with training a puppy should be toilet training should be taking place as soon as you arrive home with your pup how can you do that and entertain guests, as if a pup's not going to be stressed enough after being separated from it's Mum and siblings.

What happens with a cute pup after Christmas when the kids are back at school and adults back in work, the poor thing will end up in a rescue centre that is over crowded so sacrifices have to be made, a puppy is easy to re home but to make room the elderly senior dogs aren't so fortunate and might be euthanized to make room for a pup.

If you want a puppy think and talk about it over the Christmas holidays and consider giving a senior dog a loving forever home you could be saving his/her life.

A Rescue Dog's Christmas Poem
Based on the epithet that: "A dog is not just for Christmas".

'Tis the night before Christmas and all through the town,
every shelter is full - we are lost but not found,

Our numbers are hung on our kennels so bare,
we hope every minute that someone will care,

They'll come to adopt us and give us the call,
"Come here, Max and Sparkie - come fetch your new ball!!"

But now we sit here and think of the days...
we were treated so fondly - we had cute, baby ways,

Once we were little, then we grew and we grew -
now we're no longer young and we're no longer new.

So out the back door we were thrown like the trash,
they reacted so quickly - why were they so rash?

We "jump on the children", "don't come when they call",
we "bark when they leave us", "climb over the wall".

We should have been neutered, we should have been spayed,
now we suffer the consequence of the errors they made.

If only they'd trained us, if only we knew...
we'd have done what they asked us and worshipped them, too.

We were left in the backyard, or worse - let to roam -
now we're tired and lonely and out of a home.

They dropped us off here and they kissed us good-bye...

"Maybe someone else will give you a try."

So now here we are, all confused and alone...
in a shelter with others who long for a home.

The kind workers come through with a meal and a pat,
with so many to care for, they can't stay to chat,

They move to the next kennel, giving each of us cheer...
we know that they wonder how long we'll be here.

We lay down to sleep and sweet dreams fill our heads...
of a home filled with love and our own cosy beds.

Then we wake to see sad eyes, brimming with tears -
our friends filled with emptiness, worry, and fear.

If you can't adopt us and there's no room at the Inn -
could you help with the bills and fill our food bin?

We count on your kindness each day of the year -
can you give more than hope to everyone here?

Please make a donation to pay for the heat...
and help get us something special to eat.

The shelter that cares for us wants us to live,
and more of us will, if more people will give.

Author unknown


  1. It is sad that this time of year people think to buy pets without giving proper consideration.
    Have a marvellous Monday.
    Best wishes Molly

  2. Great post. It's such a shame that people still treat pets as presents

  3. Can't believe that slogan is over 30 years old - it's definitely a classic & will never go out of style. Wish people would learn that's all. I visited a shelter the other day & although they are crying out for people to adopt they really don't like to 'push' the animals too much during the Xmas period (particularly the puppies) for all the reasons you mentioned in the blog. Well written.
    Have you thought about linking up with the Tuesday Tails BlogHOp with Dogs N Pawz - should be on today

  4. Oh, that poem made Ma's eyes get teary. Please, don't buy from pet stores...adopt, adopt, adopt. And for Santa's sake, don't get a pet as a holiday gift. So many become unwanted after the new year. Great post, Sheba and Mr. Ian!

  5. that bee a awesum poem guys.....two bad reely de author iz unknown....they dee serve sum high paws N head bonks ....

  6. It is so true and so sad that people just get pets as presents. They are too big of a commitment to be just a present.

  7. Great message! I noticed my daughter has "a kitten" written on her Christmas list. I asked her if she meant a real kitten, and she said no a toy. Of course, I am in kitten withdrawal and wouldn't mind. But now may not be the best time.

  8. That's an amazing poem. It's sad and straight to the point. Thanks for sharing it with us.

    We love the no-adoption during December advert... I wouldn't want anyone getting a dig in a whim.