The perils of getting a pup as a present at Christmas:

On this week’s show, we discussed “the perils of getting a pup as a present for Christmas” following a recent campaign by Dogs Trust.

Last week, early morning commuters in Dublin were surprised by large four-foot wrapped model dogs across key locations in the city to launch the Charity’s A Dog is for Life, Not Just For Christmas ® message. The dogs were ‘abandoned’ at notable locations in Dublin city to provoke awareness and discussion around buying a puppy as a gift this Christmas. locations included: St Stephens Green, Busarus, Grattan Bridge, Heuston Station, Leeson Bridge and Trinity College.

Sadly, Dogs Trust experiences many unhappy returns after Christmas with more than 1,000 abandoned and unwanted dogs a year arriving through the doors of their Rehoming Centre. Every November in the run-up to Christmas, there is a huge increase in the number of pups being advertised for sale both on and offline and the Charity’s switchboard experience a spike in phone calls from members of the public looking to surrender their unwanted dogs post Christmas.

The charity is asking the public to support and share this important animal welfare message at Christmas by joining the cause and pledging to take #ThePuppyPromise online at

Mark Beazley, Executive Director at Dogs Trust explains:

For us as Ireland’s leading dog welfare charity, this campaign is very much about encouraging people to stop and think really carefully about the commitment you are taking on when you consider buying that puppy at Christmas. Can you be certain that once the celebrations are over you will still feel the same way about the puppy and your decision?

We are at the front line of the sad reality of abandoned and unwanted dogs every day and although these mock dogs that we have used today are not real they absolutely depict the stark and cold way in which dogs are needlessly abandoned on streets across the country every January. We really would encourage anyone who is set on getting a dog this Christmas to wait until the busy festive period is over and to consider adopting from your local rescue centre, pound or Dogs Trust.

What to consider if you want to adopt a puppy:

  • Owning a dog is a lifetime commitment. The average dog lives for 13 years.
  • You should expect to spend around €10,000 over his lifetime depending on the size of the dog.
  • Puppies can be extremely hard work for an owner, particularly if there are young children in the house – do you have enough time to spend with your pup?
  • Dogs don’t come fully trained. They can cause a lot of damage to your possessions through chewing and accidents. How committed are you to training your dog?
  • Christmas is always a very hectic time of year with relatives and friends arriving. This isn’t the best time to introduce your new dog to the house.

As usual we also answered a number of questions from listeners.

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