A Dogs Trust survey shows that 11 per cent of the population would still consider buying a dog as a Christmas present - despite the charity's 26-year-old warning that a dog is for life.
Research by the charity suggests that 15- to 24-year-olds appear to take the long-running catchphrase less seriously - 22 per cent of that age group said they would buy a dog as a gift. The figures are based on an NOP poll of 1,000 people.
"Sadly, every year charities such as ours have to pick up the pieces when people don't think through the commitment," said Clarissa Baldwin, the trust's chief executive. "Even before the New Year, our rehoming centres will already start to count the cost of impulse buying as dogs are dumped on their doorsteps."
The charity has sent the survey to national and regional media. It outlines that anyone thinking of buying someone a puppy should consider that the average dog lives for 13 years, costs around £8,000 to look after and can take a long time to become fully house-trained.
The trust closes all 15 of its rehoming centres to the public for the two-week festive period to dissuade impulse purchases.