The Worst Christmas Gift Ever

Published by Michelle Kretzer.

The holidays. A couple of months filled with holiday cheer, carols, and snowflakes—followed by a flood of animals being dumped at shelters.

That’s because after the hustle and bustle—after discovering the cute little puppy under the tree wearing a big red bow—come the puddles on the carpet, the walks in the cold, the chewed-up shoes, and the vet bills. So when the kids who begged, “I’ll take care of him every day, I promise,” are too busy playing their new video games to care for their new puppy, Rover is tossed aside like last year’s Call of Duty.

Puppies need a stay-at-home person to housetrain them properly (they can’t “hold it” all day) and multiple walks every day, even when it’s cold and rainy. Both puppies and kittens need lots of patience and understanding, room to grow physically and mentally, and a fat wallet for sterilization and all the shots, wormings, grooming, food, medicine, and toys.

People who give animals as gifts are essentially sticking about 16 years’ and thousands of dollars’ worth of responsibility under the tree. Sounds festive, right?

If a family member or friend is genuinely ready and willing to adopt an animal, wait until the holiday hoopla is over and offer to accompany them to your local animal shelter where you can help pick out a wonderful companion for life, not just for Christmas.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind