How to Place a Dog for Adoption


Giving up a beloved family pet can be a heartbreaking experience. There are legitimate reasons for finding a new home for your dog. Seniors may be unable to care for a dog or have to move to a nursing home. You may need to relocate to a new residence where dogs are not allowed. People adopt dogs and realize that they do not have the time to care for them, or cannot handle a dog. Allergies or other health reasons can cause you to give up a dog. You need to find a home where you know your dog will be safe and loved.

  • Ask your veterinarian, friends, neighbors and coworkers if they know anyone who is interested in adopting your dog. Create posters with an endearing photograph of your dog and hand them out to people you meet, or place them around your neighborhood. Visit the prospective adopter’s home and interview the family before allowing them to take your dog home. If the family has other pets, or children, you should be sure that your dog is comfortable in that kind of environment.

  • Contact a breed rescue, or foster group, if your dog is a purebred. For example, there are golden retriever rescue groups, pug rescue groups, and many others. These volunteer organizations find homes for specific breeds. Breed rescues screen potential adopters and only adopt to people who are familiar with the breed or willing to learn.

  • Place a free ad on Petfinder. Their database allows adopters to search for pets from the United States, Canada and Mexico. Include a current photograph. You can also place free ads on Craigslist and eBay Classifieds, also known as Kijiji. Both sites post guidelines on placing your dog for adoption. You can also place an ad in your local newspaper for a fee.

  • Take your dog to a no-kill animal shelter, or humane society. This is a last resort. Even if it is a no kill shelter, your dog may spend months in a kennel. Some city animal control facilities, known as dog pounds, will keep an animal for a set period of time. If your pet is not adopted, it will be euthanized, because of space limitations.

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