Dogs Trust

A dog is for life, not just for Christmas®

Registered Charity Number: 227523 , SC037843

Our iconic slogan marks landmark anniversary

Date Posted: 30 Jan 2014

In autumn 2013, Dogs Trust, commemorated thirty five years of its iconic slogan – ‘A dog is for life, not just for Christmas®’. The impactful slogan is one of the UK’s most memorable phrases of all time and is now firmly cemented in the public consciousness - perfectly delivering the powerful message of responsible dog ownership to the masses and continuing to significantly reduce the number of abandoned dogs after the festive period. In 1978 the Charity estimated that 20 per cent of dogs were given as gifts, which has since reduced to less than 2 per cent today. Although the figure has dropped significantly, it means that around 16,000 dogs are still being purchased as gifts every year. Sadly, with the rapid increase in dogs being bought on impulse online, it is clear that the slogan remains as relevant today as it did 35 years ago. The slogan was created in 1978 by Dogs Trust current CEO Clarissa Baldwin OBE unlike most other iconic slogans which are created by advertising agencies. One evening, Clarissa was sat at the kitchen table chatting to her husband about the urgent need for a campaign to stop puppies being gifted at any time of the year but specifically at Christmas when she had a light-bulb moment and the slogan was born - proving that charity really does begin at home! Clarissa has since been awarded an OBE in 2003 for her work in animal welfare. Her success with Dogs Trust, coupled with the longevity and popularity of the slogan, has meant a ‘paws-itive’ improvement in dog welfare across the nation.