You have decided that you can offer a loving home to a new 4-legged family member. You have planned your budget to be stretchy enough to cover all possible future vet bills, and know the day-to-day costs of feeding and keeping a demanding furry friend, and are fully prepared for the pre-holiday struggle of phoning all your friends and relatives to find out who is willing to take the duty to look after Rufus this time. One thing you are not quite sure about, however, is where to find the new family member. Finding the right canine companion can be a struggle, but the chances are the right one is waiting for you in your local rescue centre.
Rescue centres are full of dogs with big personalities and loads of love to give to a new family. In 2014, DogsTrust alone rehomed over 12,000 dogs. Other big rescues like the RSPCA, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and Blue Cross together cared for tens of thousands of unwanted dogs. On top of the well-known charities, there are tons of smaller ones all around the country. Just simply google your area + dog rescue to find your closest one!
When you get a dog from a rescue centre, you are not only changing the dog’s life forever, but you can also rest assured that the charity you rehomed him from will be there to support you throughout the journey. Before you even meet the possible new dog, they will have assessed him, and know about any possible behavioural problems, dietary needs, and all other special requirements they may have. The dogs will also have been looked at by a vet and treated by professional canine behaviourists. All dogs that come from a rehoming charity have also been microchipped, vaccinated, wormed and neutered. Charities are normally also more than happy to provide you with training tips to start with, and will give you all the assistance along the way that you need.
Despite the fact that the common belief that to get a rescue dog you can just walk in one of the centres, pick a pup and go is simply not true, the rehoming process is still fairly straight-forward. For example, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home has a 3-step rehoming policy. The first step is to register online and provide them with a proof of your ID and address. The second step is when you can start browsing the dogs available for rehoming on their website, and give the rehoming centre a ring when you think you have found a match. The rehoming team will then assess the dog to make sure he matches your requirements and is suitable. Sometimes the first dog you like isn’t Mr. Right, so the charities ask you to keep an open mind regarding other dogs. The charities are generally excited about every chance they get to rehome a dog, but in the end it is their responsibility to ensure both the new owner and the dog are suited for each other!
When you go and meet the dog, the rescue normally asks for every member of the family including current canine residents to attend the meeting. Once the right dog has been matched with the right human(s), it is time to for the most exciting part for the family, and not least for the dog – to go home.
When you rehome, you give a new chance in life to one of the thousands of dogs who have been left behind by their previous owner. Adopting a dog will surely change his life, but anyone who has ever offered a new home for a rescue dog is convinced that the dog has changed theirs too.
Adopting is without a doubt the most responsible way to get a dog, and the charity will provide you with all the essential aftercare and tips you may need. With the thorough rehoming process, the chances that you end up with an unsuitable canine companion are very small, and the rescue will make sure you are all set up for the most wonderful journey with your new dog.
For more information about rehoming a dog, you can visit: