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  • Northside West

Christmas dog returns are up

Monday, 5th February, 2018 8:00am
Christmas dog returns are up

PJ was abandoned in the Dogs Trust car park.

Christmas dog returns are up

PJ was abandoned in the Dogs Trust car park.

NORTHSIDE based charity Dogs Trust has experienced a 22 per cent increase in requests from people looking to surrender dogs after Christmas.

The canine charity received 186 requests from new dog owners trying to get rid of their pet and one young Jack Russell was abandoned in the Dogs Trust car park.

The terrier, named PJ by Dogs Trust staff, was brought to the Finglas rehoming centre on January 9 and the distressed dog watched from the car park as a man dropped his lead and drove away.

With no other option, PJ was taken into the safety of Dogs Trust and is now looking for his forever family.

However, he is suffering from a lack of confidence, which staff believe could indicate PJ missed out on socialisation in his early life, as he is very quiet.

He spends most of his day in bed and is scared to meet other dogs and play the way a happy dog should. PJ has now received all necessary medical treatment from Dogs Trust and is settling into his new life and routine.

“It is painfully upsetting to see PJ, a friendly young dog being discarded in such a heartless way,” said Catriona Birt, Head of Operations at Dogs Trust.

“PJ is a particularly sad case, which highlights how important those early months are for a pup and how vital it is to make time to socialise and habituate your new arrival in their puppyhood and adolescence.

“Our care team here are helping PJ with basic training and confidence building, and showering him with love and affection. He is now recovering well from the incident and he is looking for a new family who will love him.”

Last November, Dogs Trust launched their #PawsForThought campaign, where they urged the public to “pause” and think twice before getting a dog for Christmas.

However, Executive Director of Dogs Trust, said the message was lost on many of the post-Christmas callers to the centre who wanted to rehome their dogs.

“We are saddened to see an increase in the number of dogs and puppies being surrendered or abandoned after Christmas again this year,” she added.

“Dogs Trust urges the public to avoid getting a dog around the Christmas season. It is disappointing to see that this message is still falling on deaf ears for many as the number of surrender requests continues to rise.

“PJ is a particularly sad case. He is such a sweet and kind boy and for him to be discarded this way is deeply upsetting.”

Dogs Trust operates at full capacity and offers as many places as possible to dogs from Irish pounds, as they are the ones most at risk of destruction.

That means the charity can’t take surrendered dogs from members of the public. However, sadly in the majority of cases so far this year, the welfare of dogs found straying or surrendered was of such concern, that they were admitted for immediate veterinary attention, putting further strain on the service.

The charity says it recognises that not all surrender requests are made lightly, and that sometimes circumstances change, resulting in no other option but to surrender a dog.

However, staff are urging the public to try and anticipate any major lifestyle changes such as an upcoming move, or a baby coming into the home and consider how a dog may impact this before bringing one into the home.

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here