Scotland’s leading animal charity is warning of the dangers of giving pets as Christmas gifts as it prepares for one of its busiest times of the year.
The Scottish SPCA says that every year it stresses animals should not be bought on a whim or given as surprise presents - but that some irresponsible people still aren’t getting the message.
And the charity has revealed that some owners give ‘ridiculous’ excuses for giving up their pets.
“Sadly, our animal rescue and rehoming centres are full every Christmas,” said Chief Superintendant Mike Flynn.
“Shockingly, some owners see our centres as dumping grounds and animals as disposable items they can just give away.
“This is particularly evident over the festive period and in the months that follow and the saddest cases are when people try to give up their older dog to make way for a Christmas puppy.
“Recently we were given a hard luck story and took in an elderly dog and then found out the owners had visited another charity and bought a pup .
“One owner even told us they didn’t want their dog making their house untidy when they had guests over for Christmas, which is just ludicrous.”
The charity will stop rehoming puppies, kittens and baby animals between December 19 and January 3.