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A large proportion of pups are yet to explore outside their home, sparking concern as to whether a number of dogs that have been adopted over the last year are being properly cared for
Pet wellness company Itch surveyed Brits who had adopted or purchased a pup during the last 12 months to assess what challenges pet owners will face as coronavirus restrictions ease in the future.
And their findings make for worrying reading - a staggering 62 per cent of pups have never been in an environment other than their home, and two out of five dogs adopted had yet to meet another puppy.
Around half (49 per cent) had yet to ever meet a child, while 36 per cent had never been to a park before.
There could even be a surplus of dogs made available for adoption post-pandemic, as results found as many as two fifths of new dog owners now regretted buying a pet in lockdown, with 20 per cent admitting they did not realise how much work went into raising a furry friend.
Now, around a third of new dog owners are considering putting pups back up for adoption when lockdown finally eases.
Andrew Pinnington, CEO at Itch, said of the study: "The results of the research demonstrate how we need to be turning our attention to the 'new normal', whenever that may be.
"We need to think how we can help reintegrate our pups back into a post-pandemic society so they can have a rich and fulfilling life."
Dog trainer Oli Juste added: "It's extremely worrying to read that 62 per cent of 'lockdown pups' haven't been in an environment other than their home yet.
"Although you can always train an older dog new tricks, when it comes to socialisation, we only have a small window to get it done. The socialisation period needs to be done and dusted by the 16th week or about. These dogs will therefore need special attention."
The news comes as it has been reported that puppy sales have boomed over the last year, with many people purchasing pooches as lockdown meant they were forced to spend more time at home.
Research by the Kennel Club found registrations of new puppies jumed by 26 per cent in 2020 - but there were fears as some new owners wondered whether pets will be able to fit into their lifestyle post-pandemic.
Here's hoping that people remember a dog is for life, not just for lockdown.
Featured Image Credit: Unsplash
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