Barking babies not good Christmas gifts

Thinking of getting a puppy for Christmas?

Don’t do it. That’s the advice of Penny Stone of the Victoria Humane Society.

She was in the Valley last weekend to take part in a fun doggy day at Cedar Ridge Canine and urged everyone to leave the idea of adopting until a quieter time.

"Adopting puppies is a horrible plan right now. It’s actually a bad time of year to get a puppy. There are so many things they can get into like the Christmas tree and the decorations. But, also, you’re just too busy. When you get a puppy, you really need to be able to spend a lot of time getting them trained and not throwing them into the midst of a lot of craziness."

When you add children excited by the combination of Christmas and perhaps a lot of sugar, it’s tough on the little dog, she said.

"It’s too much. Even parents can have short tempers, too, because it’s a crazy time. It’s also very emotional. People can get exasperated. They get puppies; they’ll say, my kids really, really, really want one. And, yes, it’s great to get a family pet but you have to think carefully about the timing of it."

So, maybe giving a stuffed toy or even a photo of the pet to come might be the best idea at Christmas rather than rushing into a purchase.

Other animal lovers at the event agreed, citing the similar problems people often face when making snap decisions to give a bunny or even a chicken as a pet at Easter.

Stone brought along four puppies to show the dog-loving crowd at the event that her centre will have a plentiful supply of the little canines for adoption after the holiday excitement is over.

"These four are six weeks old. We have approximately 50 puppies that will be available the first week of January. We took in a bunch of dogs and within three days 55 puppies were born. It was a little crazy, but they’re all going to be ready the first week of January. These four are from of a litter of 12," she said.

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