The decision to find a new home for a pet is never an easy one, but sometimes circumstances make it impossible to take care of your animal. There are lots of reasons people have to make the heartbreaking decision to give a pet up. Financial hardship, major health struggles, animal behavior issues, and other lifestyle or compatibility problems can all tempt people to consider other living arrangements for their pet.
LazyPaw Animal Hospitals believes in helping every animal find an ideal home. Before making a big decision, we urge pet owners to consider all the options. Depending on your situation, your pet may be able to go into temporary foster care with a loving family, then come back when you are ready. If a new home is the only choice, think about these suggestions for finding the best fit for your animal friend.
If the choice is because of a behavior problem, talk to your vet first.
Millions of animals are given away each year because of behavior problems, but most of these issues can be eliminated or modified with a little help. For example, a rambunctious dog may just need more exercise or play time to fend off boredom. Veterinarians and animal trainers can help with most behavior issues, so if behavior alone is the cause for a new home, talk to some pros first.
Ask friends and family before dropping your pet off at a shelter.
Many shelters are overcrowded and have no choice except to euthanize animals, so before you leave a pet at a shelter, talk to friends and family to see if they or anyone they know would be interested in adopting your animal. Social networks such as Facebook are another great way to reach friends and advertise to their networks as well.
Put together an honest information page.
Type up a flyer with your pet’s picture, personality traits, age, health condition, general behavior, and any special needs or considerations someone should know when browsing for a pet. Be truthful, since including the good and the not-so-good will help people know more immediately if the pet is a fit. Post the page to Facebook and email it to family and friends. Ask them to send it to anyone they know who might love your animal.
Do a smart search outside your network.
You can also post your pet’s info page at local pet supply stores, vet clinics, bulletin boards at work and local schools, and places of worship. It’s important that any information you post should include at least a nominal fee, since this will detract unethical people who might just want to forward the animal to a research laboratory or pet breeding mill. If your animal is a purebred, you may be able to find resources online that specialize in rescuing specific breeds. Some additional websites that let people post information for adoptable pets include RescueMe.org, AdoptaPet.com, and PetFinder.com.