According to the BBC, lockdown has prompted some 3.2 million households to buy pets, with puppies being especially in demand.


Alexandra Cameron has welcomed one of these “lockdown puppies” into her home in recent months. Like many others who have recently bought dogs, she cites working and learning from home as the driving force behind the family’s decision to get a puppy.


“We needed a reason to get out of the house more, and going on walks with Mollie is helping all of us get more fresh air.”


Alexandra says that her family “thought very carefully” before getting their puppy. 


“We did lots of research beforehand. Buying Mollie was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made,” she smiles.


Unfortunately, many new dog owners cannot say the same - the Kennel Club states that “a quarter of new owners admit buying a puppy during the Covid-19 pandemic with little research.”


This has caused a huge rise in the number of puppies being abandoned or resold by owners who didn’t consider their purchase enough.


Another potential problem is people not looking ahead enough: it seems that many people who bought puppies as companions in lockdown haven’t thought about what will happen to it when they go back to work.


But the main downside to people making impulse purchases with little research might be the provenance of these new puppies. The closure of rescue shelters coupled with the huge rise in demand for dogs has meant that people could have been sourcing their new puppies from disreputable breeders or even puppy farms.


However, for those who, like Alexandra’s family, thoroughly researched where they got their puppies, these furry friends have proved a lifeline throughout the pandemic.


With many buyers citing loneliness as a major reason for getting a dog during lockdown, it cannot be denied that puppies have significantly improved people’s mental health during this harsh time. Dogs have long been known as “man’s best friends”, and buying a puppy has probably impacted many families for the better.


So for anyone thinking about getting a dog: as long as your decision is carefully thought out and the dog is bought from a trusted source, it may well be “the best decision (you’ve) ever made”.