A Connemara based dog rescue service is running an awareness campaign aimed at educating people about adopting mongel puppies or adult dogs.
The month long event being organised by MADRA - Mutts Anonymous Dog Rescue and Adoption - kicks off on Monday.
Chairperson of MADRA Marina Fiddler says throughout the month it will educate people about the health and behavioural benefits of adopting these dogs.
She says people should not overlook mongrels as new companions and must spend time researching dog breeds to discover which best fits their lifestyle.
“The benefits of dog ownership are well documented for all age groups from toddlers to pensioners but it is important that you choose the right dog for your family and your way of life. It can be quite confusing with the range of breeds available nowadays so why not consider the trusty mongrel.
“It has a great reputation for being a faithful old mutt who, although he may not look the part, is a good all rounder and suits family life very well. You can get mongrels pretty enough to compete with any show dog and they are generally thought to be a stronger, hardier dog that gathers its genes from a more varied source as opposed to the small gene pool of some pure bred dogs.”
Mongrels, a mixture of more than three known breeds of dog, were the most common dog on Ireland’s streets until the 1980s when people became more interested in showing and breeding dogs for profit.
“Currently, a lot of mongrel puppies are exported to the UK where they adore the mongrel dog,” she says. “They find it hard to get them there due to an overpopulation of pure bred dogs.”
When adopting a dog, regardless of breed, MADRA always emphasises the necessity for proper training.
During Mongrel Month MADRA in conjunction with West Dog Training, is offering 50 per cent off puppy training classes with every one of their young dogs from now until the end of February.
The Camus based dog rescue service finds homes for a variety of dogs of all shapes and sizes, including many pure bred dogs. However, this month the focus is on the large number of mongrel dogs which are awaiting homes.
For more information on the dog training classes or adopting a dog from MADRA log on to www.madra.ie or telephone (086 ) 814 9026.