Forever Homes: How to Adopt An Animal From A Shelter

When you’re an animal lover, it can be heartbreaking to hear of animals being badly treated or abandoned. How anyone could hurt an animal is beyond most normal people, but sadly it happens all too often.

The early months of the year usually see an explosion of pets being taken to animal sanctuaries. Despite the enormous amount of awareness on the subject, people still insist on buying animals as presents. The saying a “Pet is for Life not just for Christmas” is true. Having a pet, especially a dog or a cat, requires a long term commitment. The average domestic cat can live up around the grand old age of 15. Dogs average 10 – 14 years. It’s almost akin to having a child, although they are slightly less dependent, and you don’t have to buy them new shoes every six months!

If you are looking for a new addition to your family, then don’t go to a pet shop. Perpetuating the vicious cycle of pets being brought on a whim then fobbed off on sanctuaries, pet shops are bad for animals. A pound or sanctuary is the best way to give an animal, abandoned through no fault of its own a forever home.

Visit dog homes and pet refuges when you are looking for a new pet. Have a clear idea of what type of pet you are looking for. It’s really easy to see all those poor abandoned animals and want to take the all home!

Once you’ve found your animal, you’ll need to get to know them. Most rehoming units advise coming to visit a few times before you take them home. This gives you a chance to see how you get on together. It also gives an animal a chance to start to feel familiar with you. Many pets who have been abandoned may be reticent or fearful of someone new. You can’t blame them. Dogs may take a while to socialize again, and may have a lack of discipline. This can usually be remedied with effective dog training. You can try some techniques out at home, but if you’re not making any progress, do seek an expert’s advice!

The re-homing unit will generally then come and visit your house.  This is known as a home visit and it’s to make sure that your accommodation is suitable for your potential new pet. You can’t have a huge dog living in a tiny apartment with no garden, for example. Think about your pets needs before your own here. You’ll be doing a lot of that without realising once they’re at home with you!

If you’re a responsible pet owner you’ll have specialist insurance. You need to make sure you can afford treatment for your pet should it get ill. Vets bills can be very expensive, and unless you have substantial savings, it could mean the difference between life and death. Spare yourself unnecessary heartache and make sure you are covered!

Giving a pet a forever home is a wonderful thing. Here’s to many happy and healthy years together!

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