DOGS TRUST Ireland have released an emotional advert pleading with people not to buy puppies for Christmas.
Each year, the charity urges people not to gift a puppy for Christmas, as it is the worst time of year to try and train a puppy or get them used to the family with so much going on.
Puppies could chew on and break new presents, become overwhelmed at all the activity or become too much to handle once the holidays are over and people go back to work, and each year Dogs Trust reminds people that 'A dog is for life, not just for Christmas'.
Despite this, many people do choose to get a dog or puppy for Christmas, and many of them go on to live comfortable and happy lives.
But there is another, darker side to the buying and selling of puppies, which occurs year-round in Ireland: illegal puppy farming.
Dogs Trust has launched their 'Sold A Pup' campaign to highlight "the cruelty and deception" surrounding the illegal breeding and selling of puppies and to urge the Irish public to "help stamp out puppy farming".
The emotional TV advert, produced by Cardel, directed by Katarina Lundquist and with vocals by Irish singer-songwriter Lisa Hannigan, is a heart-wrenching take on the famous 'Night Before Christmas' story.
It shows a young family who buy a puppy as a gift for Christmas, and while the dog is welcomed into the family with open arms, they are left questioning what happened to its mother and what type of life she really leads.
You can watch the emotional advert below-- but have the tissues ready.
As part of the new campaign, Dogs Trust have launched a petition to stop the illegal breeding and selling of dogs, with a spokesperson writing:
"Sadly, for too many puppies and their mums, their Christmas story won’t have a happy beginning – or a happy ending. But YOU have the power in your hands to change the story for dogs across Ireland.
"Your signature, and your voice, will join with thousands of others across Ireland, to stop the illegal sale of dogs. For too long, unscrupulous breeders have operated in the shadows, evading penalty, or punishment."
You can add your voice to the petition to stamp out puppy farming in Ireland here.