Peta uses glittering fairy lights to remind people that animals aren't Christmas presents

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) has unveiled a Christmas ad that looks to remind people that animals aren't gifts.

To illustrate the issue of pets being discarded once the festivities are over, the lobbying group's German arm devised a simple campaign which saw it place dog silhouettes fashioned from fairy lights around areas in Hamburg where animals are commonly abandoned.

The glittering structures were dotted around deserted urban areas and motorway service stations in the city. An accompanying video, soundtracked by a version of Silent Night, showcases the stunt.

"Animals are living beings with very individual needs and feelings. They deserve a permanent, loving home," said Jobst Eggert, responsible for creation and special Projects at Peta.

"With our emotional spot, we would like to remind people that it is advisable, in the interests of both humans and animals, to use animal-friendly gifts when shopping for Christmas."

The push was created by Serviceplan Campaign International.

UK charity Dog's Trust took a more comedic approach to its own 'A dog is for life, not just for Christmas' message this year. Urging shoppers not to snap up a pooch in the Black Friday sales.

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