Rehoming Your Pet Safely – Protocol and Information

If you are in the unfortunate situation of having to re-home your pet – please read the information below – it is very important for everyone to understand that screening is SO important and that there are many potential dangers out there to be aware of and steps to take when re-homing a pet…  the below references dogs, but everything in there is just as relevant and important for cats.

PROTOCOL & SCREENING – very important and critical information to read!

This information has been put together as a resource for anyone in the unfortunate situation of having to re-home their pet.  It is critical and life saving information. Please be very very careful about rehoming – screening homes properly is imperative and there are SO many dangers out there for your dog that the average person does not know about such as:

- bait for dog fighting

- research, animal testing

- guarding/security…. some breeds are especially vulnerable here… and these poor dogs end up living a lonely, secluded outdoor life as guard dogs

- puppy mills or backyard breeders – if the dog is NOT Fixed (spayed/neutered)’s a very real danger and people often pose as ‘adopters’ to get these dogs

- terrible homes where they are abused, neglected, ignored, and/or tied up outside all day…the list is long and extensive!

- an unsuitable match home wise and the dog gets passed around and who knows where he/she ends up

We  recommend either speaking to a reputable rescue group (there are some not reputable ones out there too so make sure to check them out, do your research) to help you place your pet properly and safely or at least to help screen homes.  Or at the very least, please use all the methods below to insure a safe and loving forever home.

We do NOT recommend the average person post the dog for adoption on Kijiji or Craigslist or sites of that’s not an appropriate vehicle for homing pets and can attract a lot of inappropriate people etc. It’s fine for rescue groups who are being very diligent in screening to use it, but for the average person it is risky and therefore we would advise against it. Craigslist and Kjiji are a playground for animal serial killers and abusers…. so please think twice before posting animals to these sites.

This story is a good example why:

Proper screening includes:

- an application and phone interview

- a meet and greet with the dog

- a home visit check

- a vet reference check

**ALL the above done prior to an adoption

Then once all the above has gone well and the adoption is a go:

- an adoption contract that stipulates proper care and that the dog MUST be returned to the rescue group or to you if you are rehoming directly IF the new home does not work out. This is key since you don’t want someone else rehoming and not taking proper care/doing proper screening if things don’t work out etc

- make sure to have all your contact info on this adoption contract, all their contact info and make sure this is clear to the adopter... that you will take the dog back if it does not work out. make sure adopter gets a copy and you keep a copy of this contract

- an adoption fee should be charged – this is important!  A value must be placed on the animal.  Never say ‘Free to a good home’ – it’s a bad idea

If you go through a reputable rescue group... all of this will be done for your pet.  However, please make sure it is a reputable group.  Or if you are doing the rehoming yourself – ALL of this screening protocol must still be done ahead of time and an adoption contract and adoption fee is imperative.

Getting copies of application form, home check form and adoption contract templates is easily done and can help you with all of this. Seek these out through the rescue community.

AGAIN… we stress PLEASE DO NOT GIVE THE DOG AWAY FOR FREE! Charging some sort of adoption fee is important for a variety of reasons AND screening properly as noted above.

SPAY/NEUTER PRIOR TO ADOPTION! – We cannot stress this enough!! The dangers for any dog that is not yet fixed (spayed/neutered) are HUGE since he/she could easily end up in a puppy mill or backyard breeder situation…it happened recently to someone who rehomed their dog and thought the people were great, nice, trustworthy and it turned out it was all an act and they ran a puppy mill and that dog is stuck with a terrible life and it’s heart wrenching and they cannot get him back now.  SO please make sure your pet is fixed (spayed /neutered) before adoption. If there are financial issues with doing this… there are ways to get help and spay/neuter clinics for low fees or no fees are available.  Adopting without spaying/neutering is irresponsible and very dangerous to the dog. Please do not rely on the new owners to do it…even if they say they will because you cannot be certain this is true.  The risks are too high and it’s much safer to make sure the pet is fixed BEFORE rehoming!

The article link above is important to read for everyone… this is very much a reality and happens everywhere…. you should be aware of the potential dangers out there when rehoming animals.

Their whole fate, safety and life is in your hands and the responsibility must not be taken lightly.