If you find yourself with a dog that you just can't live with please do NOT surrender it to a shelter, particularly a kill or high kill shelter, without first exhausting all others options and avenues.
In most instances I urge you to put your dog's best interests and the safety of your family first. Please do not expect monetary compensation to recoup for what you have financially invested into the dog when attempting to rehome it through a rescue organization. These are usually non-profit organizations and do not have the funds to purchase dogs. They are your dogs best chance to not end up euthanized at the local shelter.
1. Contact all rescue groups in your area and surrounding areas.
Be honest with them about your dogs physical condition and any issues that may make your dog more difficult to place. This may take time. Do not assume you can call and surrender the dog in the same day. Most often foster homes need to be arranged. Be patient.
Do not be put off if a rescue group doesn't call back... Keep calling! These are volunteer organizations and are often short on help. Do everything you can to work with them and around their schedules and limitations.
2. If a purebred, contact any breed clubs or groups that specialize in your breed.
Ask for assistance in finding your dog a home.
3. Locate a no-kill shelter to surrender your dog to. Make sure that your dog will pass their temperament test or it may be refused.
4. Talk to your Vet.
Ask if they know of any suitable homes. Often they will know of a family that has recently had to euthanize a pet due to illness or age, or one interested in a companion dog for one they already own.
5. Talk to people you know and try to find your pup a new home on your own.
Be honest with the interested party and hide nothing about your dogs behavior. Many people are willing to take on challenges but need to know up front what they are dealing with. Tell EVERY person you know. Have pictures and details and add them to a webpage that you can direct people to. Dogster.com offers free 10 picture pages that you can create for a dog that needs a new home.
6. Never offer your dog for "free" in a newspaper, online or on a bulletin board.
It could be taken with the assurance of a good home and instead be used as bait to train fighting dogs or end up in an experimental laboratory. A minimal amount like $50 can guarantee their safety. If you want you can always ask to contact their vet. Once you are certain the dog is being kept and cared for you can always give the fee to their vet allowing it to be applied towards your pups future care in its new home.
7. If you run out of time consider boarding your dog until a home can be found.
Sure it may be a bit pricey but isn't it worth it? A boarding fee even for a weeks in exchange for you having the time you need to find your pup a new home for the rest of his or her life?
8. If you do surrender your pet to a kill shelter be aware that the following dogs are the least likely to be adopted and are at the highest risk of being Put to Sleep.
In a high-kill shelter problematic dogs due to aggression, age and health issues are often put down by the end of the day you dropped them off.
1. Dogs with aggression issues. This includes human, dog, possession and food aggression.
2. Senior dogs.
3. Dogs with special needs. If your dog is blind, diabetic, has a chronic skin condition, severe dysplasia or suffers from any chronic or serious health issues.
4. Black colored and brindle marked dogs are statistically the last to be adopted. Please visit the following link and read the article about this phenomenon CLICK HERE
5. Large breeds. For whatever reason small breed dogs just seem to have an easier time being adopted or pulled from shelters into rescue groups.
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Here are some tips provided by San Jose Animal Care services that you may want to look at before making the decision to give up your pet. CLICK HERE