I’ve been thinking hard about how I can help my clients to think rescue, rather than breeder. Simply put, there are thousands upon thousands of dogs & cats looking for homes. I’d like to add my shoulder to the wheel of getting some out of the shelters and into your home.
A quick Google check tells me that the RSPCA estimates that the UK pet population in 2018* is estimated at:
9.0 million dogs
8.0 million cats
*Latest available estimated figures from the
That’s a whole lot of cats and dogs. I could go further into stats about how many are rescues and how many from breeders, but I’m no researcher and don’t want to give out uncertain facts.
What I would like to do is to ask you to think about rehoming, before you part with precious cash for your beautiful puppy.
My aim here is NOT to make anyone feel guilty.
There are times when it’s completely suitable to go for a dog from birth (or from 6 months as our new UK legislation states...this is a fabulous thing, trust me.) Having small children is a good example.
A major benefit of getting dogs from a breeder is that from an early age is that you get to see your potential puppy with its mother. This is a MUST for anyone choosing a new family member. (Please, please, please make this a deal-breaker... NO mother present & interacting with your potential puppy = NO purchase of puppy).
But there are other dogs that need homes too, existing ones that need love and care and they are local to you too.
My ask is that you consider rescuing one.
Your local rehoming centre deserves a phone call. Adding a four-legged friend to your family is not an easy business and in truth, nor should it be. Talk to them, tell them what you are looking for and how long you are prepared to wait. State your circumstances, the ages of your children, the other animals that you already have. They are there to help and will advise you on any dogs they have that may be suitable.
As for me, well Barney came from a family that were breeders. Our children were young and our rescue attempts hadn’t worked out (I so nearly became mummy to a beautiful Basset Hound called Duke) but it wasn’t to be.
Barney came along and we love him dearly. From now on though, we are only going to rescue. They may not all be insta friendly, coiffured and polished, but if our new family member (whenever it comes) has three legs, crooked teeth, one eye and a constant stream of dribble, it will be loved as our own forever.
It’s easy to find your local centre. Try here to start.
This is also a great time for me to tell you about something I’m going to do from now on. If your dog comes from a rescue centre or was rehomed by you, tell me and I’ll make a donation to the centre it came from, or animal charity of your choice. The funds will come from the dog painting portrait I’m paid for. I have more details coming soon.