Experts have warned cats and dogs will be abandoned after a fifth of millennials buy a pet during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Pet Food Manufacturers' Association (PFMA), which found two million young Britons recently bought pets, fears they will be abandoned when their owners get back to work in offices in the New Year.
Another 16 percent of all 24 to 35 year olds – a total of 1.8 million people – have announced that they will soon have a pet.
The PFMA believes this is due to millennials feeling lonely at home during the lockdown.
Experts have warned cats and dogs will be abandoned after a fifth of millennials buy a pet during the coronavirus pandemic. Pictured: Kiera Green, 23, with her dog Rosie, whom she bought during the lockdown
However, it cautioned that such purchases could potentially spike the drop-offs if the British felt they couldn't look after their new pets when they returned to the office.
And the RSPCA is concerned that animals are being imported from abroad – like Love Island stars Molly-Mae and Tommy's dog from Russia.
Nicole Paley, associate director of PFMA, said, “With millions working from home or leaving their jobs, many have clearly considered the many benefits of owning pets.
“We know more than ever that the camaraderie and joy that pets can bring to people's lives shouldn't be underestimated.
“But we would also like to emphasize the long-term responsibility of bringing a pet into your life.
& # 39; This is an unprecedented time with unusual working conditions.
Ms. Green said, "I did a lot of research and found Rosie, a cockapoo that is hypoallergenic and suitable for my mild allergies."
"New owners need to give serious thought to possible future barriers that could make life with a pet a little more difficult if current restrictions continue to ease."
However, given the rise in livestock owners, the RSPCA has prepared for an increase in abandonment.
The animal welfare specialist Dr. Samantha Gaines said, “Life has changed dramatically in 2020 and this has resulted in unprecedented levels of pet acquisition as families spend more time at home.
“It's wonderful that animals offer so much comfort during these troubled times, but we have concerns that some families may not have considered the long-term effects of a pet before taking one in during lockdown.
“We expect an increase in dropouts and missions as life returns to normal and the recession hits some households.
The animal welfare specialist Dr. Samantha Gaines (pictured with her dog Sid) said, "Life has changed dramatically in 2020 and this has resulted in unprecedented levels of pet acquisition as families spend more time at home."
“We also have concerns about where these pets might be coming from, as some charities and many reputable breeders are struggling to meet this sudden surge in demand.
"We fear that many animals are being bred in poor conditions or imported from overseas to meet these needs, and this poses many problems for animal health, behavior and long-term welfare."
Love Island stars Molly-Mae Hague and Tommy Fury bought a Pomeranian puppy from Russia.
However, within a month the puppy died.
This sparked a health survey of young puppies that were being shipped from overseas.
"We want anyone thinking of getting a pet to do a lot of research before adopting one," added Dr. Gaines added.
Love Island stars Molly-Mae Hague and Tommy Fury bought a Pomeranian puppy from Russia. However, within a month the puppy died
“Responsibly sourcing a pet is vital as we unfortunately know that there are many people trying to capitalize on pet demand and selling animals that have not been properly cared for.
"This is especially important in the run-up to Christmas as unscrupulous growers and sellers try to capitalize on the festive rush."
Kiera Green was one of the millennials who became a pet parent during the lockdown.
The 23-year-old said: “During the pandemic, I was concerned and realized that I had more time and would love a new companion.
“I did a lot of research and found Rosie, a Cockapoo that is hypoallergenic and suitable for my mild allergies.
“I obviously had time to help Rosie live at home, but the responsibility was testing.
"I wasn't sure how much time puppies would spend exercising and toilet training and teething."
But Kiera, from Salisbury, Wiltshire, said Rosie was a fabulous companion anyway.
She added, "It has benefited my mental health massively, it brings me so much joy."
PFMA research has found that dogs are the most popular among millennials. 70 percent choose a puppy dog.
With all ages, they are also the most popular animal. A whopping 57 of them take a dog.
In second place are cats, 38 percent choose a moggie companion.
Linda Cantle of Wood Green, The Animals Charity, added, “The demand for pets has grown dramatically in the past few months.
& # 39; Inquiries rose more than 253 percent during the lockdown and over 20,000 people contacted Wood Green to get a new pet between April and June – more than half of them for dogs.
"This sudden surge in demand was felt across the industry, and charities and breeders were inundated with hopeful, potential pet owners."
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