Lockdown Britain sees surge in demand for dogs

Puppies have become a lockdown trend in the UK - with breeders seeing a huge surge in demand while people stay indoors.

Although some might just call it puppy love, many breeders are concerned that families will give up their pets once they realize the responsibility ahead.

And they are questioning the buyer's desire to take on a pet in the first place.

The Kennel Club group marked a 180% rise on last year in enquiries from people wanting to buy dogs.

Siberian Husky breeders Christine and Stephen Biddlecombe are on the receiving end of that demand.

And want people to know that a dog is for life - not just for lockdown.

[Christine Biddlecombe:] "We have had a massive increase in demand from people wanting puppies, emailing at twelve o'clock at night, one o'clock in the morning, email after email. People wanting but not understanding what they're taking on."

[Stephen Biddlecombe:] "You look at them, they're very desirable. Your heart kicks in, your emotions kick in, you want a dog, you want a puppy, and you really have not thought it through for the rest of that dog's life. A puppy is a puppy only for a few weeks and then that puppy grows into an adult, an adult dog, and you've got a completely different animal on your hands, as you can see."

Not all breeders are as cautious as the Biddlecombes, though.

The Kennel Club say that some irresponsible breeders have hiked their prices, which could encourage some buyers to look abroad - where welfare standards can be lower.

Some breeders fear dogs could end up in rescue centers once life returns to normal - and the novelty of a new puppy wears off.