Do You Really Have To Give Up Your Pet?

Be honest with yourself, are you giving up your pet because you have to, or because you want to? If the reason is because of behavioral problems or circumstances, these can be overcome with a little effort.

Here are the most common reasons for surrendering a pet and some solutions that might help you keep yours

“I’m moving…” 

There are rental houses out there that allow pets, you just need to put in a little time and effort to find them. Widening your search can also help. It may mean a longer drive to work, but at least you’ll be able to keep your furry best friend! Searching for pet-friendly rental accommodation? Try Pet Friendly Rentals.

To give yourself a better chance of securing a pet-friendly rental, prepare a complete record of your pet’s medical history, obedience school certificates and references from neighbors, previous landlords and veterinarians. Offer to sign an agreement to define appropriate behavior for your pet on the rental premises. Encourage the owner/landlord to meet your well-behaved, well-groomed flea-free pet – meeting your furry housemate might just clinch the deal.

“I don’t have enough time…”

Pets require time and effort, but probably not as much as you think. Dogs need minimum exercise, food and, most importantly, time just being near you. 

Dog walking services are relatively inexpensive, but getting exercise is good for your health and well-being too. Taking just half an hour to get out and about with your dog before and/or after work will work wonders for both of you. 

Cats and dogs can also benefit from environmental enrichment. Setting aside a few minutes each day to make their lives more interesting could make a big difference to their behavior.

“I’m having a baby…”

When introduced correctly, there shouldn’t be any problems with your pet and new baby. Here are some useful resources on bringing a baby into a home with pets.

Read more about bringing a baby into your home.

Remember all those emails and calendars with cute pictures of babies and dogs together!  They are so cute and the owners never gave up on their pets just because they were having a baby.

We get lots of emails from people saying they want their kids to grow up with a pet just like they did.

“We have an allergy problem…”

There are some wonderful products on the market that will help keep you healthy and allergy free, so surrendering your pet for adoption could be the last option. It certainly shouldn’t be your physician’s first recommendation. There are oral antihistamines as well as injections available!

Look for a physician who will be sensitive to your feelings and do everything possible, within reason, to help you keep your pet and stay healthy.

“My pet has behavior problems…”

If your pet is badly behaved, it’s highly unlikely that anyone else is going to want to take it on.

Most pet behavior problems are easily managed and overcome with the right support and approach. Before you rehome your pet, try some training and speak to a behaviorist or trainer. Giving your furry friend a second chance is the least you can do. Train your dog Huntsville is a great resource to use as the owner is a board member of FOR Rescue!

Don’t complain, train!

We’ve all had undesirable behavior from our pets at one point or another but helping them learn what to do is the first step before you just call it quits.  If you will commit to spending 10-15 minutes a day working on basic commands (sit, down, stay, off, come), then your dog will know what you want them to do in certain situations.

Always be totally upfront about behavioral problems when you’re dealing with potential adopters. Misinforming can leave you open to legal prosecution.

Aggressive much? 

If your dog displays signs of aggression or behaviors that may lead to aggression, you must understand that you are putting others at risk. No matter how much you love your dog, if he has ever bitten anyone you need to take him to a professional trainer for assessment and rehabilitation.

Never advertise your pet as a guard dog, as they may be neglected, abused or used for dog fighting. We know it’s a very hard decision to make, but putting a dangerous dog to sleep is often the safest and most responsible thing to do. 

Behavior problems: Why, What, and How to solve them?!


By law, all stray pets must be kept for at least three days to give their owners a chance to reclaim them. After that, the animal can be destroyed.  However, these laws don’t apply to pets that have been given up by their owners. They may be killed at any time. Realistically, you can turn your pet into the shelter, sign the waiver, and they walk your pet back to the euthanasia room.  

Shelters often euthanize to make space for new pets arriving every day. Others may have waiting lists several months long, as they can only take in new pets when existing ones are rehomed. 

Contact as many shelters and rescue groups as you can, but you’ll likely find they are already over their capacity and unable to take in any more animals. Y ou might get lucky, but don’t rest all your hopes on a rescue finding your pet a home for you.  If you offer to keep your dog till it’s rehomed than you might have a better chance at getting your dog in with a rescue group.

If they know you’ve done everything you possibly can to find your pet a new home, most rescue groups and shelters will be glad to try and help you. So, be sure to put in a good effort before asking for their assistance. And be prepared to be asked to foster the animal and confirm with vet records that the animal is fully vetted, altered, and heartworm/felv/fiv negative. 

You DO NOT have to be a 501C3 (nonprofit group) to post dogs on so if you would like to rehome your dog, it’s a great website to use.