The charity, which specialises in the wellbeing of dogs , has made the decision to help prevent people rushing out to adopt dogs over, what is typically, an extremely busy period.
Dogs Trust said that while people often have the best intentions, many are unable to provide the stability and routine that dogs and puppies require during the re-homing process.
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Anyone looking to give a dog a forever home after the festive period can do so from 4 January 2020 when the charity will begin taking applications again.
In a statement about the charity's decision, Dogs Trust executive director Becky Bristow said:
“Each year we are saddened and worried by the number of people looking to relinquish their dog, especially in the first few months after Christmas“We hope that by spreading this message that it will remind people that a dog is a long-term commitment and will encourage people to wait and consider adding a dog to their family in the New Year instead, when the festivities have died down.”
However, the charity states that it understands not everyone celebrates Christmas and that people who can demonstrate they are able to provide a suitable home and devote enough time to an adopted pet can still get in touch.
“Not everyone celebrates the festive season, and for some families having additional time off from work and other commitments could make it a good time to settle in a new dog,” Adam Clowes, operations director at Dogs Trust, explained to Metro.
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“We will only ever rehome a dog after a lot of discussion with their new family, and if they’re having a particularly busy Christmas, the dog will stay and celebrate Christmas with us, ready to head off to their new home in the New Year.”The decision follows the launch of Dogs Trust’s new television advert which aims to reinforce the message behind its famous slogan: “A dog is for life, not just for Christmas”.
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The charity’s slogan is brought to life in the advert through a little puppet dog made of cork, who arrives on at a new home on Christmas Day.
After lapping up attention during the Christmas festivities, the puppet dog is abandoned outside with the rubbish the next day where he turns into a real dog and is rescued by Dogs Trust.