During the covid-19 pandemic, people working from home with little to do felt a companion would be a good thing to keep them company and entertained while being restricted to 5km from their homes. For some, it was a way to keep their kids entertained and others simply thought it would be a nice short-term adjustment. As a result of this, they bought ‘covid dogs’ Unfortunately, for many of these dogs, they did not know the loving home, care, and attention they received daily would be temporary.
With the restrictions lifted and the country going back to normal, many people are back in their working environment and are no longer at home seven days a week. Many of these people who are no longer working remotely or maybe working in a hybrid environment can no longer provide these dogs with the adequate amount of care and attention they need, resulting in these dogs being given away.
Unfortunately. over the past six months, one rescue centre in Meath has taken in over €30,000 worth of dogs. According to Coolronan Animal Rescue in Ballivor, the rescue centre has had to close its doors as they simply cannot handle the number of dogs in the care. The centre has explained that 36 dogs that have been rescued are deemed aggressive due to the lack of socialisation the dogs got while in their homes. It’s believed that these dogs were bought as pets for children to keep them entertained while the parents worked from home and after a while got bored of the dog. As a result, the dogs were left in the homes alone and were not walked or socialised with other dogs.
The centre itself had to turn away 11 dogs in one day as they had too many dogs in the shelter that were too aggressive. It is believed that the owners are giving away these dogs because they say the dog is misbehaving. However, when an individual buys a dog and does not provide the adequate training or attention required, it is no longer the dog’s behaviour that is the problem but it is, in fact, the owners themselves who did not commit to owning and caring for the animal.
According to the centre, they have cockapoos worth €1,300 and other dogs worth up to €1,850 that people had paid for these dogs and gave them away not long after.
Many of the people who bought these dogs would have never dreamed of getting a dog before the pandemic as they would not have had the time or attention for these dogs. So when they seen a window of opportunity they took it, not considering the fact that dogs are a lifelong commitment and not just when it is convenient for the owner. Sadly, it is not just Coolronan that has been struggling to rescue dogs. Earlier in the year Dogs Trust Ireland also called to action as they had received multiple dogs whose owners could not handle them any longer.
Along with this, earlier in the week, three dogs were rescued in Tipperary, where they were kept in complete darkness with raw meat and other rubbish thrown on the ground. The conditions were said to be deplorable and there was no water left for the dogs to drink. These dogs have now been rescued and are being cared for by the ISPCA which is also struggling with too many dogs at the moment.
Unfortunately, this crisis has been ongoing for years and appears to be on the rise. It is vital that when people are getting a dog they make sure they consider all aspects; are they going to be available to care for the dog, walk it, feed it and pay for veterinary bills if needed. They must also look at where they get their dogs from and if they are reputable sources. With Ireland being a breeding ground for puppy farms and people making money from breeding and selling dogs, the conditions are not always favourable and as a result, these breeders are making a lot of money for these dogs and not looking after the animals wellbeing.