It’s safe to say that 2020 was a year full of bad news, and as we all bunkered down for lockdown last spring, we were all looking for a little positivity.
And one silver lining in it all was the surge in pet adoptions during quarantine. With more people spending time at home, people finally had the time to take in a puppy or kitten. Demand was so high many shelters were left completely cleared.
Sadly, we’re now seeing a downside. While many people took in pets for good, others did so impulsively without thinking about the long-term… and as times change, many of these “lockdown pups” are being let go.
Recently, ads have appeared offering dogs for sale for thousands of dollars, by owners who bought their puppies months ago while unemployed or while having more free time, but now can no longer commit to caring for them due to changing circumstances.
“Unfortunately, due to work commitments now we are no longer able to give him the loving and care he requires and deserves,” one ad reported by the Sunday Times, offering a 6-month-old collie-spaniel, explained.
“Offered a new job and change of circumstances,” another reads.
Others have been giving their pets up to local charities. The Times reports that The Dogs Trust has received a whopping 1,800 calls in the last three months about unwanted puppies.
Operations director Adam Clowes says the uptick is due to people impulsively getting dogs during quarantine.
“All that initial lockdown excitement – ‘We are never going to have to go into the office again, let’s get a dog!’ – we are now seeing the consequence of that,” Clowes said.
That tracks with the findings of a survey conducted by The Kennel Club, which found that while two-thirds of people surveyed said their dog was a “lifeline in lockdown,” a quarter of new owners admitted they did so with little research, and many of these “impulse buyers” were unsure how they would be able to handle their new pet post-quarantine.
The RSPCA has reported finding many abandoned dogs in recent months, and said they were “bracing” for more as lockdown pups continue to be left behind.
“We were worried that many families who found themselves at home with time on their hands during lockdown would make impulse decisions to take on pets,” the RSPCA told The Times.
“And now, just a few months on, would be seeking to rehome their new dogs after realising how much commitment they are, having run into financial difficulties due to the pandemic, or because they’ve returned to work and no longer have time for them.”
There are many dogs in shelters looking for their forever homes, but please, only adopt if you’re ready to make it a lifelong commitment!
We hope these poor “lockdown pups” who were given up find homes who will care for them forever. Share this important story!