Rhys Ifans Urges People Not to Buy Animals as Gifts This Christmas
Actor Rhys Ifans, who is starring as Scrooge in The Old Vic’s A Christmas Carol, nipped out of the theatre on Tuesday afternoon for a festive photo opportunity with PETA.
Rhys urged Londoners to leave animals off their Christmas shopping lists:
A tacky tie is easy enough to return or toss aside and forget, but animals are living, breathing, feeling beings who can’t be re-gifted if they don’t suit. They require lots of time, patience, and money – all of which are hard to come by during the holidays. If you’re thinking about giving a furry friend as a gift and don’t want to be haunted by the Ghost of Christmas Past, stick to the kind found in toy shops.
In the days, weeks, and months following the festivities, animal shelters across the country are inundated with animals who were given as “gifts”, only to be tossed out like tinsel when the novelty wore off or their guardians discovered that caring for boisterous puppies and kittens is a full-time job.
Three animals are abandoned every hour during the holiday period, according to figures released by the RSPCA. And recent reports reveal that the Christmas demand for puppies is fuelling dog smuggling as callous breeders try to make money at the expense of animals’ well-being.
An animal companion is for life, not just for Christmas. Please seriously consider whether you have the time to care for a dog, cat, or other animal and always adopt from your local animal shelter instead of buying from a breeder.