It might be you, or it might be a friend or family member that is thinking about surrendering or giving up their pet.
Before it gets to that stage, read this list of options that can be tried first which might help in allowing an owner to keep their pet.
Summary – Options To Consider Before Surrendering Or Giving Up Your Pet
Call a pet support program in your area
Search for pet food banks and other pet support initiatives
Read your local pet surrender portal, or call your local pet helpline
Ask yourself the exact reasons that you’re wanting to give up your pet, and ask yourself what the solutions might be
Pursue the option of re-homing before animal shelters, or euthanasia
Call your breeder, and ask if they can help in any way
1. Call a pet support program in your area
A lot of people might give up their pet due to financial challenges.
Pet support programs can do a range of things such as offering discounted or free basic vet services, spaying and neutering, obedience/behavioral training, temporary pet boarding and fostering, and more.
In the US, two examples are the ASPCA launched “Safety Net” program, and another is the program run by the Animal Humane Society.
Read more on them at:
- The Need To Help People Keep Their Pets (aspca.org)
- Why People Give Up Their Pets (nextavenue.org)
- AHS Annual Report (animalhumanesociety.org)
2. Search for pet food banks and other pet support initiatives
Pet food banks are one example of initiatives set up to provide help to pets and pet owners in need.
Do an online search for local pet related help initiatives in your area.
3. Read your local pet surrender portal, or call your local pet helpline
Do an online search for pet portals or pet surrender hotlines in your country or state.
RSPCA Queensland has a pet portal, and the Animal Human society has a pet helpline – both as examples.
Both services (portals and helplines) help pet owners know their options are that might help them keep their pet, when they are thinking of surrendering their pets.
Read more on each service at:
- Top Reasons People Surrendered Their Pets In 2017 (rspcaqld.org.au)
- Pet Helpline (animalhumanesociety.org)
4. Ask yourself the exact reason, or reasons that you want to give up your pet, and ask yourself what the solution/s might be
There are a list of top reasons and solutions to go along with those reasons when it comes to giving up pets.
Have a read of these guides and the resources listed in them:
- Reasons Why People Give Up Or Surrender Their Pets
- Solutions To Pet Abandonment, Overpopulation & Shelter Overcrowding
You can also do a search engine search for your exact problem, and see if there is a short term and long term solution for it that you haven’t yet considered.
5. Pursue the option of re-homing before animal shelters, or euthanasia
Pet helplines, portals, animal care organisations, and even animal shelters can all help you find out the easiest and best ways to go about rehoming your pet to a loving home (and not someone who will mistreat your pet).
When the other options are shelters or euthanasia – it makes much more sense to re-home.
6. Call your breeder, and ask if they can help in any way
Responsible breeders (if you bought your dog from a breeder) will want to help if you need to give up your pet for any reason.
It can be worth giving them a call and explaining your situation and seeing if there is anything they can help you with.
Some breeders even offer to take back dogs and re-home them themselves.