We here at Bark & Co. are staunch supporters of dog ownership. But sometimes life events make it impossible to keep your dog. A death in the family, a disagreement with your landlord, a shortage of funds, or a medical condition can all lead to the impossibly tough decision to rehome your dog.
When this occurs, you want to make sure you do everything in your power to find your dog a forever home. Here are a few steps you can take:
1. Take A Step Back
The first step is a step back. What is causing you to give up your dog? There are often quick fixes to seemingly insoluble problems. For example, your dog’s erratic in-house peeing may not be a behavioral problem at all, but an easily-cured urinary tract infection. Conversely, a trip to the behavioral therapist may reduce the need for expensive anxiety medication.
2. Find A Temporary Foster
If time is running out and you absolutely have to get the dog out of your house immediately, rather than rush and risk finding an imperfect home for your dog, find a temporary foster pawrent. There are lots of caring hoomans out there who will watch after your pup as you work through your plan for finding him an adoptive parent. If you need to rehome your dog due to a housing situation, a foster family will often care for the dog until you are able to bring them back home with you.
3. Read The Contract
If your dog is from a rescue or a reputable breeder, they may require that you return the dog to their care. Be sure to read the adoption contract to see if this is the case. If it is, work with your rescue to set up interviews of potential parents. A great guide to interviewing applicants can be found here.
4. Make Sure Your Dog Is Spayed/Neutered
Spay or neuter your dog before putting it up for adoption. This is a big boon to potential parents who might not want to go through with it themselves.
5. Avoid Craigslist
This is not even an option if you want to get your dog adopted safely and responsibly. Craigslist is often trolled by people looking to take advantage of dogs.
6. Contact Every Rescue Group In Your Area And Ask If They Can Help
Your local rescues will help shepherd you through the adoption process. They are your go-to.
7. If You’re Coming Up Short: Become Your Dog’s Publicist
If you’re still having trouble finding a home for your dog, it’s time to get serious. Take a good photo of your dog, or hire a professional photographer who wants to shoot dogs. They might do it for free. The Humane Society of Utah has been doing this recently with great results!
This will be your dog’s calling card as s/he surfs the many websites and phone apps now available to dogs up for adoption. Use clear, natural light and capture your dog’s eyes. The eyes are the window to the soul. This is as true for dogs as it is for humans. It is also helpful to display, not hide, any quirks your dog may have. A unique photo will set your dog apart from the pack.
If your dog is a mutt, make it a feather in her cap. Follow the lead of the Costa Rican adoption agency featured below by creating an individual breed name for your mutt. After they started using this technique, adoption rates jumped 1,400 percent!
If your local rescue group isn’t already on PetFinder.com, work with them to register. PetFinder is an enormous online database of adoptable dogs. The site partners with almost 14,000 local rescues. It’s a surefire way to help your pup find its forever home.
BarkBuddy, Bark & Co.’s adoption app, uses the PetFinder database to source its dog profiles. At the moment of this article’s publication, BarkBuddy has helped thousands of dogs find their new homes!
8. Absolve Yourself Of Guilt
You will know in your heart if your dog will be better off in someone else’s care. There are so many good people out there looking to become a dog parent. Your dog will be in good hands!