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Dogs rescued in 2016 © RSPCA

There are approximately eight and a half million dogs kept as pets in the UK*. There are many different breeds and types of dog, all varying in size, body shape and personality.  

It's generally accepted that the common ancestor of the domestic dog (Canis familiaris) is the wolf. Domestication of the dog began around 15,000 years ago and during this process humans selected desirable traits such as coat colour and leg length. This selection process has resulted in over 400 different breeds of dog.

Give a home to a rescued dog

We rescue and rehome thousands of dogs each year - each one comes with a unique personality ready made. If you're looking to introduce a dog into your family why not offer a forever home to a dog in our care? 

Kindness at Christmas

We’re appealing for kindness this Christmas, to help the thousands of animals who are facing neglect and cruelty over the festive season.

Help care for a rescued dog this Christmas by buying their meals over the three main days of the holidays. Your kindness can make such a difference.

Understanding dogs' needs

Owning and caring for a dog is great fun and immensely rewarding. But it's also a big responsibility - on average, dogs live for around twelve years, but many live for much longer. Dogs have very complex needs and each dog is unique. This is why there is no one 'perfect' way to care for all dogs.

Take a look around at our expert advice and you'll find everything you need to ensure your dog is healthy and happy.

You can also download our booklet:  How to take care of your dog (PDF 2.08MB).

* [Pet Food Manufacturers' Association (PFMA) 2016]. 

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