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Dublin: 7 °C Tuesday 21 January, 2020
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25 puppies surrendered to Dogs Trust in 6 days

Some of the puppies were left in bags in a graveyard and along a canal while others arrived with serious burns on their paws from standing in their own urine.

Image: Dogs Trust via Facebook

ANIMAL WELFARE CHARITY Dogs Trust has appealed to people think before buying a dog at Christmas as its rehoming centre in Dublin struggles to cope with the increasing number of abandoned puppies.

In the last six days alone more than 25 puppies have been abandoned or surrendered to the centre in Finglas, some showing serious signs of abuse or neglect.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie, Kathrina Bentley said there is usually an increase in the number of puppies the charity takes in after the festive season but this is more common around March when the dogs have reached adolescence and have not had proper training.

“People seem to think that puppies arrive pre-trained and know how to give the paw and all of that, and then when they’re not happy with them they think they’re like a washing machine or a handbag and that they’re disposable,” she said.

Bentley said many of the animals were in extremely poor condition when they were brought to the centre, sometimes in full litters.

We had seven Jack Russels babies together, a couple more dumped in the graveyard on New Years’ day in a bag and another four in  a bag at the canal. A couple of the puppies have paws that are very badly burnt because they were left in their own urine for so long and just today we had a little Shih Tzu  come in completely filthy with it’s hair all matted, the poor little thing. It had obviously been wandering the streets and in this terrible weather we’ve been having it’s just awful.

Though the Shih Tzu was micro-chipped, the address was traced to an abandoned building site and Bentley said this demonstrated the need for people to update the information on the chips regularly.

“It’s vital that people get their dogs micro-chipped and keep the information up to date,” she said. “While we have so many sad stories we also have a lot of lovely reunion stories because we’ve been able to find out where a lost dog came from.”

The rehoming centre has the capacity for around 170 dogs and has been left stretched over the last number of days with the surge of puppies coming in.

“We usually need about 12 staff a day because we’re open 7 days a week and with 173 odd dogs we’re running around the place,” Bentley said. “Of course we’re always looking for more people to volunteer and walk the dogs for us but we’re blessed with the volunteers we already have.”

Information on behaviour and training techniques can be found on the charity’s website as well as tips on introducing dogs to a new baby, another pet or moving house.

Related: Dogs Trust receives record number of surrender calls after Christmas>

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