Adopt-a-Pet.com has a program available for individuals in the U.S. who need help with cat or dog rehoming. See more info at rehome.adoptapet.com and read our tips below!

cat-dog-wanted-a-new-homeWhether you rescued a pet from a shelter, one you found abandoned in the street, or from a home that could not or no longer wanted to keep him or her — you are a pet hero! Thank you for helping a pet in need and trying to find him or her a new loving home. (If you are trying to find a new home for your own pet, please click that link for an article that is written just for your situation.) Adopt-a-Pet.com is a service that lets shelters and rescue groups list their animals for adoption.  We also have a peer-to-peer service called Rehome that allows individuals in the U.S. to post pets they cannot keep or stray/rescue dogs and cats to our website. If you have a stray or found pet that you would like to Rehome, please read our tips if you find a stray pet before doing so. The information below is not intended as a complete guide to rehoming a pet, but is a great way to get started. Thank you again for helping a homeless pet!

Find your pet a new home yourself

More than likely, you will need to do the work yourself to find the pet a good home. Don’t worry – Rehome is here to help! If you choose to post your pet on Rehome, you will be guided through the entire process- from creating your pet’s profile to transferring vet records to the new owner. There is no fee to list a pet on Rehome and once your pet’s profile is live, millions of potential adopters will be able to view her or him. If you cannot keep the pet in your home, ask friends and family to help, or look for a boarding facility or veterinary office where you can pay to house the pet. Don’t house the pet too far away or it will be hard to show him/her to potential adopters. Here are a couple other tips that can help you with the rehoming process:

  • Friends, family, coworkers and neighbors are valuable adoption resources. Not only are they potential adopters, but they can help spread the word to others as well.
  • Have the pet spayed or neutered-you’ll have better luck adopting him or her out!

Screen any potential new home

If you are considering giving the pet to someone you don’t know, you will want to screen them to ensure the match is a good one. Let your pet’s personality be a guide for what questions to ask. Is your pet good with cats, dogs, and kids? Does she have any characteristics that warrant a more experienced pet owner? If you are using Rehome, you’ll get suggestions on how to screen applicants to find the best home for your rescue dog or cat.

Once you’ve chosen a few top applicants, you should meet with the potential adopter in person to make sure it is a good fit. Through Rehome, we offer tips on how to set up a safe and successful in-person meeting. Trust your intuition—you want to be sure that the adopter has your pet’s interests at heart. You may want to check identification and ask for references. Let the new adopter know they can call you for questions or advice.When you pick the perfect new home for your pet and transfer ownership, you may want to give the new owner a call after about a week to find out how things are going.

Do NOT give away a pet for free

Free pets are much more likely to be abandoned, and in some cases, someone might be seeking to obtain a pet for free to use for an illegal purpose such as dog fighting. When using Rehome, there will always be an adoption fee applied that will be donated to help more pets find their forever homes. Having someone pay money for a pet is one of the most important ways to be assured that the person who is taking the pet is serious about wanting them, and can afford to pay for the food and veterinary care the pet will need throughout his/her life.

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Surrender to a rescue or no-kill shelter?

There are privately-run shelters and rescue organizations that do not kill pets. But because they keep the pets for as long as it takes to find a new home, they are usually filled to capacity, so it can take weeks to get an appointment. If you do find a “no-kill” organization than might take the pet you rescued, offering as big a tax-deductible donation as possible will help. Remember, in the case of private shelters and rescue groups, they are just people who are doing their best because they care about pets, most are volunteers spending significant amounts of their own money to cover vet bills, and they all get far more legitimate hard luck cases than they can possibly handle each day. For a list of shelters and rescues in your area, click here.

Surrender to a public shelter?

It is greatly preferable to find the pet a home yourself rather than taking him/her to a shelter. Even the best shelter is stressful for the animal, and you have only one animal to focus on while a shelter may have hundreds. Publicly run animal shelters are already overcrowded and, in many cities, a majority of the pets are not adopted, but instead are euthanized. Even purebred and friendly pets are routinely destroyed at public shelters to make space for new pets coming in. The extent of the overpopulation problem varies from area to area. For a list of shelters and rescues in your area, click here.

Remember, this pet has NO ONE but YOU—The loyalty you show and effort you put forth to find this pet a new loving home, even if it causes inconvenience for you now, will be well worth it when you know that this pet is living out a healthy and happy life!

Thanks again for helping to find a rescued pet a new loving home!

If you have any further questions about cat or dog rehoming, please visit our FAQs page.