Sputnik: What do you think of the ban?
It's usually your puppy farmer and places where owners can go buy a dog within a day. There's no kind of questioning, no asking if they are suitable owners and the rest of it. I suspect the people who come to a rescue centre to get a dog are probably more responsible dog owners in the first instance. So how much difference will that make? I'm not entirely sure, but I think it's a good initiative.
Emily Birch: I would imagine that there are probably policies within rescue centres currently that stop people from getting a dog in the immediate Christmas period, because I imagine they would probably rehome them in the new year. So if a family came along and found a dog they really liked and wanted it for Christmas, I suspect, there is already a policy in a lot of rescue centres that would not rehome it until the new year. But I think that everything to raise awareness that a dog is for life and not just for Christmas is a good plan.
Sputnik: What else can be done to enforce the thought that a dog is for life, not just for Christmas?
They require quite a lot of input, but I think it always comes down to education and educating the general pet-owning population that actually dogs aren't easy. You want man's best friend but actually, you have to put in a lot of training. And those lovely dogs you see walking alongside their owners, looking up at them lovingly, have probably put a lot of work in to get to that point. It's not that you just buy a puppy and it's your new best friend.
The views expressed in this article are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.