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FAQs

Helpful Topics For Pet Owners

After we receive your request for help finding a home for your pet, a member from our team will get in contact within 1-2 business days to let you know if we are able to help and provide you with a link to our pet upload form. At this time we will also ask you to send us any medical records for your pet.

By filling out our pet upload form you are creating a pet profile that will be submitted, approved and ultimately posted on to Adopt-a-Pet.com for potential adopters to inquire about. Any interested parties will fill out an adoption application which will be emailed to you for review. When reviewing an application, we have screening guidance located on the side and at the bottom of an application so that we can help guide you through an application and help you to understand what to look out for.

If you are interested in moving forward with an adoption we recommend calling their references, doing a Google search to see what comes up and getting on on the phone to ask any further questions or learn more.

To prepare for an in-person meeting we have detailed tips in our ‘Handling prospective adopters section to help you choose a safe and comfortable location as well as get an idea of what to ask and what to look out for.

If you are comfortable moving forward with an adoption we need the owner and adopter to finalize the adoption by signing and submitting the adoption contract and transfer-of-ownership certificate. You can find out more in our ‘Finalizing an adoption’ section below.

There is no definitive answer to this. We have had pets that have been adopted within weeks or months of being posted on Adopt-a-Pet.com, pets that have been inquired about but never adopted, and some pets that have never had an inquiry.

Trends we’ve found:

  • Dogs tend to have a higher chance of being adopted over cats.
  • Younger pets tend to get more inquiries than older pets.

A tip from us:

  • The sooner you can get your pet’s profile posted to our website, the more opportunity there is for us to spread the word about your pet by posting his/her profile on partner websites and in our daily ‘New Pet Alerts’ emails.

Sadly, most likely we cannot help if you can’t keep your pet beyond today. The process of rehoming a pet through the Adopt-a-Pet.com system is one that takes, at minimum, several days. You need to allow time to upload information about your pet, have an adoption counselor approve your pet listing, and then, once your pet is on Adopt-a-Pet.com, it takes time for the right potential adopter to find your pet. Depending on the type, size, and age of the pet, it can take from a couple of days to several weeks or, rarely, even months to find your pet a new home.

If you absolutely cannot keep your pet while we help you find a new home for him or her, here are some options to consider:

  1. Ask your friends and family if any of them are able to provide a temporary home for your pet while we work together to find a permanent home.
  2. If you can afford it, keep your pet at a boarding facility during this time.
  3. Call your veterinarian’s office and let them know about your situation. See if they have anything to suggest. Sometimes a vet can provide boarding; other times they may know of a family looking to adopt another pet.
  4. Contact rescue organizations in your area to see if any have room for your pet. You can find a list here. A few things to keep in mind: Many rescue organizations don’t take pets from owners, only from public animal shelters. Also, most rescues do not have a facility; they rely on a network of foster homes, most of which are usually full. Most rescuers also have “day jobs” and may not be able to respond to a call or an email immediately. It’s very expensive for rescuers to care for pets, so it may help if you can offer a donation to a rescue, or offer to pay for your pet’s care until a home is found. Tip: if your pet is a specific breed, look for rescues that specialize in that breed. Google can also be helpful with this.
  5. As a last resort, relinquish your pet to an open-admission shelter. Your first choice should be a private shelter, like an SPCA or humane society, where they may be able to keep your pet for a longer period of time. Your absolute last choice should be a public municipal shelter, where an overabundance of people relinquishing pets means overcrowded conditions and pets only having a short time to find a home before being euthanized to make room for others coming in.

Adoption fees serve several purposes. They help ensure that the person who adopts your pet understands, and is able to meet, the financial obligations of owning a pet.

They also prevent “bunchers” (people who acquire pets from “Free to Good Home” ads and sell them to medical research laboratories) from getting their hands on your pet. Charging an adoption fee also aims to weed out people who might be looking for a free animal to use as a fighting dog, or as bait for fighting dogs.

As a non-profit organization, Adopt-a-Pet.com is committed to supporting animal shelters and rescue organizations in their important work. That’s why we feel strongly that your pet’s adoption fee be donated to a local shelter or rescue organization. That also helps us keep disreputable breeders from abusing our rehoming service.

Please, rest assured that the fees collected from your pet’s adopter will be extremely appreciated by the animal welfare organizations they go to support, and the funds will be used to help other animals in need. Your cooperation with this policy is crucial in helping this system survive.

Being honest and providing as much information about your pet is recommended. You should be transparent about what you want for your pet, what your pet’s personality is and what your pet really needs (and always be honest about any medical needs and behavioral issues). Remember that you want to find potential adopters that are qualified and ready to provide your pet with a home where they can be happy, safe and loved. So start off by giving potential adopters all the detail they need to know about your pet so that they can determine if they are a good fit before taking the steps to apply.

Tip: Posting effective photos and videos of your pet is very important in helping your pet to be seen. See our photo and video tips section for more information.

DO’S:

  • Our research shows pet listing photos that are a close-up of the pet’s face are clicked on more often than shots taken farther away. HOWEVER especially if you and all your other nearby shelters and rescues are all using face closeup shots, all pets start to look the same. Try mixing it up and see what works for you and your pets! Dogs with long noses try profile shots, dogs showing their bellies or running happily, cats jumping up for a toy or curled up next to a person.
  • Put a colorful bandana or collar on the pet.
  • Place a toy in the photo with the pet.
  • Take the photo with grass or light solid-color fabric as the entire background.
  • Have a smiling person petting, sitting next to, or holding the pet. Even just a person's hands in the photo will show the pet is friendly with people, and also show a pet's size.
  • Take the photo outside in indirect sunlight (cloudy day or in solid shade) or in the brightest indoor spot.
  • Use treats or a toy to get the pet to look right into the camera.
  • Run dogs around until they are panting – it makes them look like they are “smiling”.

DONT’S

  • have the pet pictured behind bars (this makes the pet look scary & makes shelters seem like a sad place to visit).
  • be dark or gloomy.
  • be blurry, out of focus, or not have the pet shown clearly.

TIP: You should take the photos using the LOWEST resolution on your digital camera. They will still look great on the internet (which only shows low resolution images) and will load much faster to any site you post them on because they are smaller files!

Once you have completed our pet upload form and we have approved your pet profile, your pet profile will be posted to Adopt-a-Pet.com. You will have received an email from us to let you know that your pet has been posted on our website. In that email you will find 2 links, a link to your public pet profile and a link to login and update your pet profile at any time.

Potential adopters will now be able to view your pet’s profile on Adopt-a-Pet.com. If they are interested in your pet, they can fill out an application in the ‘For Adoption by Private Owner’ section near the bottom of the page on your pet’s profile. That application will be received and reviewed by a member of our team and then we will get in contact with you to let you know about the inquiry.

To learn more about next steps in the process, check out our How It Works & What to expect page.

A tip from us:

We have found that pet profile’s that contain a video are much more likely to get a higher rate of inquiries than pet profiles that do not contain a video.

You will have received an email from us titled ‘Pet has been approved’ to let you know that your pet profile has been approved. That email will contain two important links: a link to your pet profile page on Adopt-a-Pet.com and a link to login and update your pet profile at anytime.

If you are unable to locate that email you can use the link below to login and update your pet profile.

You will receive an email from us 1 month after you submit your pet profile asking if you still need our help. You will have 2 weeks to reply and let us know your response. If we do not receive a reply from you we will remove your profile from public view. (This would mean that your pet profile would be removed from public view within a month of the initial email).

We’re going to take you, question by question, through the adoption application and talk about what to look for (and what constitutes a red flag). First, some general info: we asked several rescuers what they look for in an adoption application. The number one answer: the feeling that the applicant thinks of their pets as part of the family, and cares for them responsibly. Some important clues are: previous pets have lived long lives, if other pets at home are spayed or neutered and up-to-date on shots, and that pets live in the house, even when alone, not in the yard or the garage.

It’s always good when someone asks great questions about your pet, and the nature of those questions can be telling. If the applicant is asking about behavioral issues, you’ll know what their top concerns are, which can help you determine if this would be a good match. If the first and only question someone asks is, “Is this dog good with bigger dogs?” and your dog isn’t, that’s an indication that this may not be a great fit. Of course, you should read the rest of the application, and make sure you ask a lot of follow-up questions during the next phase (the phone interview). Also, please be 100% honest in your answers; as much as you may want this adoption to work, telling the adopter what they want to hear, or suggesting that a problem can be easily fixed can mean a failed adoption, which can mean your beloved pet ends up in a shelter.

If the applicant asks if your pet is spayed or neutered, be on alert. It may be an innocent question from someone who really hopes your pet is altered, which is a great sign of a responsible pet owner! On the flip side, that question could indicate interest in breeding your pet.

Great answers are anything that has to do with love or companionship. If someone wants a companion for his or her other animal, that can be fine, but ask follow-up questions to make sure that if your pet doesn’t become best playmates with the existing pet, your pet won’t be given away or relinquished to an animal shelter.

If the answer is “I want my children to learn responsibility”, or “I’m adopting a pet for my child”, please ask questions about the parents’ intention to take responsibility for your pet’s care when their child loses interest or becomes too busy to handle daily walks/feeding/litter box cleaning, etc. Many pets are relinquished to shelters for just this reason.

“As a gift” is another answer that requires further questioning. Is the gift for someone in the same household, like a spouse or a child? In that case, make sure that the recipient is aware of the gift, and that the person who filled out the application is willing to take responsibility for the pet’s care. If they’re not, the gift recipient should be the one to fill out the application. If the gift is for someone outside of the household, the recipient should absolutely be the person to fill out the application. After all, your pet will potentially be living in their home, so you’ll want to know all you can about them!

If the answer is “to mate with my other dog”, “as a guard dog”, or anything else that makes you uncomfortable, go no further.

For dog owners, if you know your dog needs a big backyard for playtime between walks, or your dog barks when left alone, an apartment-dweller may not be the best adopter. That said, committed dog owners who live in an apartment or condo often bring their dogs to dog daycare while they’re at work. Others are allowed to bring their dogs to work. These are some great things to ask about.

If the adopter lives in a home, ask about the backyard. Will your dog ever be left alone in the yard and, if so, for how long? Ask about the security of the backyard fence, and ask for photos or a video tour so you can make sure it looks safe and secure.

The most important thing here is to make sure that, if the applicant rents their home, that they have permission to have a pet like yours in their home. Please call the landlord to verify. This is so important; many pets end up in shelters because their well-meaning adopter erroneously thought they could hide their new dog or cat from their landlord, or they just didn’t realize they weren’t allowed to have pets in their rental home. Many rentals that do allow pets require a monetary pet deposit; make sure the adopter is prepared to pay that fee. Some have restrictions on the type or size of pets allowed. Bottom line: ask questions.

This one is pretty obvious. If your pet is good with kids, and you decide to move forward with an in-person meeting, ask the adopters to bring their kids with them. Then, observe the way the kids interact with your pet. Just as importantly, observe the way the parents guide them. Do they let their kids treat your pet roughly? If they intervene, are they kind to their children, or do they yell at them? You can tell a lot about how someone will treat a pet by the way they treat their children.

Also, watch how your pet reacts to the children. Pets often give off subtle signs of nervousness or discomfort, such as lip licking or yawning, or not-so-subtle signs, like actually trying to avoid the children.

If your pet isn’t good with kids, and the adopter has them, go no further.

If your pet isn’t good with other animals, obviously you’re looking for a pet-free home (or a home belonging to an expert professional behaviorist who simply won’t give up).

If your pet is good with other animals, and the adopter’s pets are good with the type of animal you’re rehoming, you’re probably in good shape. All that’s left is the introduction to make sure that they do, indeed get along.

If there’s any uncertainty, you’ll want to do a careful introduction (for dogs), or make sure that the adopter is comfortable doing an introduction at home for cats (which might not happen until after the adoption, and must be done very slowly). Please see the FAQ titled “Should the adopter bring their children and other pets to the in-person meeting?” for more advice, and for links to articles detailing proper introduction techniques.

These questions are meant to help determine if the applicant is a responsible pet owner. There’s no better indicator of future behavior than current or past behavior.

If your pet is spayed or neutered, but the adopter’s current pets are not, be aware that unaltered pets can be more prone to territorialism and aggression.

Please note that heartworm preventive is really important in some regions of North America. Heartworm is caused by a certain type of mosquito, which is more prevalent in some areas than others. Still heartworm preventive is a good idea, no matter where you live.

If the applicant’s current pets aren’t up-to-date on shots, on heartworm preventive, or spayed/neutered, we’ve given them a space to explain why. Indeed, there are medical conditions that prevent some animals from being safely altered or vaccinated. Also, relating to vaccines, some people choose to do titer testing, rather than annual booster shots. Titer tests determine whether your pet still has immunity to a disease. Note that in most areas, rabies vaccines are mandatory, whereas other vaccines are not.

Most likely, your pet is spayed or neutered, but it bears saying anyway: never adopt an unaltered pet to a home with other unaltered pets!

According to the animal rescuers we spoke with, this is perhaps the most important question on the application. Read this one carefully, and don’t be afraid to ask follow-up questions.

Good signs: The applicant’s pets lived a long life. If not, they died of an unavoidable illness, like cancer. The owner provided veterinary care. The applicant speaks lovingly of their former pets, and expresses that they were part of the family. A nice, detailed answer in this field, rather than just a word or two. Previous adoption of shelter pets.

Red flags: Pets died of something preventable, like heartworm. Pets were killed by cars. More than one pet was lost (as in literally got lost and weren’t recovered), ran away, or was stolen. Pets were given away, whether to friends, family members, or strangers.

This question just gives you a basic idea of the applicant. Please do not use this to discriminate against someone due to age! Retirees can make amazing pet parents, as they have time and love to give, and many retirees are extremely fit and active. We’ve also known many wonderful pet guardians who adopted during college. The key is to make sure they understand the commitment they’re making, and to require proof that they’re allowed to have pets where they live.

Acceptable answers to this question vary by pet. Acceptable answers to this question vary by pet. You know your pet best. So many different factors play into what will make you pet happy in their new home, including but not limited to the type of pet, pet's age, energy level, environment, training, daily exercise, other pets in the home.

Where people keep their pets is as diverse as the people on this planet! Some people believe pets should never come inside their home, others think it would be cruel to have pets not sleep on the bed with them at night. When looking at responses to this question, consider what your pet is used to and happy with, and what would make him happy in his new home. If the response is simply "inside, be sure to ask where "inside" is -- is that anywhere inside their home, inside a garage, or inside a crate in the kitchen? For cats, while we advocate for keeping cats safely indoors-only, if your cat was an outdoor or indoor/outdoor cat, be sure the family is willing to keep the cat completely enclosed for 30 days, the time most rescuers tell us it takes for a cat's internal compass to reset to a new location. Other pets, too, can be more likely to roam from a new home, so keep that in mind as you consider the answers to this question.

The only answer you need to be really concerned about here is “no”. Even if your pet has always been super well-behaved with you, or is totally housetrained, there’s always a chance that new behaviors will surface as part of the transition to the new home. If the answer is “Yes, but I need guidance” as a follow-up question, ask how they plan to get the guidance they need. It’s a good idea to encourage them to seek out positive–reinforcement methods like clicker training (as opposed to punishment-based methods, which can cause trust issues between owner and pet).

Let’s face it: as you know, sometimes there really are extenuating circumstances that cause someone to give up a beloved companion animal. Use your best judgment on this one. If the applicant states that they would have to give up this pet if he or she bit their young child, that may be an acceptable answer for you. But answers like “having accidents in the house” or “chewing belongings” can indicate a lack of commitment to making it work when minor problems arise. Especially since your pet is going through a change of home right now, it’s important to be as sure as you can be that the next situation will be a permanent one.

Make sure this answer matches the degree of activity your particular dog needs. If you’re adopting out a senior citizen, he or she may not need or want much exercise beyond just a spin around the block. But if you’re adopting out a really high-energy dog like a Jack Russell terrier mix or an intelligent highly-driven dog like an Australian Shepherd, your dog will require a lot of activity in order to avoid frustration behaviors like barking or destroying household items.

The answer to this should ALWAYS be a no. If they’re considering it, it could be because they’re not aware of the implications of declawing. Please read (and direct your adopter to) this article and this one to learn just how awful it is to be a declawed kitty.

If the applicant doesn’t provide an answer to this question because he or she insists that this would never happen, push for one anyway. Things happen. You want to be assured that there’s a humane plan for rehoming your pet in the event of an emergency. Above all, the applicant should not plan to relinquish the pet to an animal shelter. Specific friends or family members are good; using the Adopt-a-Pet.com rehoming service is also good.

After you’ve looked over the adoption application, it’s time to decide if you want to move forward, or if you want to turn down the applicant.

If you’re not interested in moving forward, it’s highly recommended that you send the applicant a quick note letting them know. This can be uncomfortable, we know, but it’s a really courteous thing to do. Also, it helps the person move on and find another pet who might need a home quickly!

If you are interested in moving forward, we recommend three steps before you set up an in-person meeting:

  1. Call the references the applicant provided and make sure they’re legitimate, and that the person recommends the applicant as a responsible pet owner.
  2. Do your own research. Google is your friend; try Googling the person’s name or email address and see what comes up.
  3. If the references check out, and Google doesn’t bring back anything alarming, set up a phone meeting (this can also be a video meeting, if you’d prefer). Take another look at the application and make a list of any follow-up questions you’d like to ask. The phone meeting is a perfect time to talk specifically about your pet and his or her needs and quirks. For instance, if your pet is picky about other animals, if she will only eat an expensive brand of dog food, or if he tends to get really matted and requires frequent grooming, make sure the applicant is aware and able to accommodate all of your pet’s needs. Give the applicant the opportunity to ask you all of their questions as well.

If, after the phone meeting, you have any nagging doubts, trust your instincts! Better safe than sorry. If all signs point to “go”, it’s time to set up an in-person meeting!

After you’ve received and screened an application from a potential adopter, the next step is to set up a time to talk on the phone or via video chat, if you can. Once that step is complete, it’s time to set up a meeting!

It is very important that you put your safety first when setting up an in-person meeting. Make sure you ALWAYS meet in a public place and, if at all possible, bring a friend! A pet-friendly store is a perfect, safe place to meet. A veterinarian’s office can also be a good option, but make sure you make an appointment first.

If your pet is a dog, you may be tempted to hold your meeting at a dog park, but this isn’t recommended. Your dog will be so distracted by the sights, smells, and sounds of other dogs that he might not be able to concentrate on the potential adopter. It’s important for you to observe your dog’s body language around the adopter so you can tell if this is a good match, so keeping distractions to a minimum is a good idea.

If your pet is a cat, a pet-friendly store can also be a great place to meet. No matter what, ALWAYS bring your cat in a carrier, and always conduct the meeting indoors. A nervous cat can bolt. If you can find a safe, enclosed room to meet in, open your cat’s carrier and see if he or she wants to come out. As you know, cats are not always comfortable in strange surroundings, and may want to hide, so cat meetings are by nature more challenging than dog meetings. Do your best to balance the need of the person to meet the cat with the cat’s need for safety.

When you arrive at the meeting, spend a few minutes talking with the potential adopter, allowing your pet to investigate him or her at his own pace. Some pets, especially friendly dogs, will want to give the adopter lots of enthusiastic attention right away, and that’s fine. Timid dogs, or cats in carriers, may need a little while to warm up. Let your pet take the lead. If your pet likes treats, bring some for the applicant to offer your pet. Treats can be a great ice-breaker!

Make sure you allow the potential adopter the chance to bond with your pet. It can be tempting to want to talk a lot, but it’s very important to give the adopter some quiet time to observe, talk to, touch (if your pet is comfortable), and get to know your pet. They need to be able to picture him or her as their pet, so it’s in your best interest to step back and observe without talking or intervening too much. Of course, the applicant will have questions for you, so don’t go too far. Also, and we can’t stress this enough, if you have any doubts or nagging feelings, don’t hand over that leash or carrier, even for a moment. Trust your gut instincts.

After the applicant and your pet have had a little bonding time, it’s your turn to ask questions. It’s a good idea to ask questions that were on the application, and also to ask some new ones. Often an in-person conversation will bring up things you haven’t heard before.

So, how do you know if it’s a match? We asked several rescuers who have conducted hundreds or even thousands of these meetings. The most common answer was, “Your pet will tell you.” You’re looking for a connection between your pet and the prospective adopter, one that seems genuine and comfortable. Is the adopter willing to get down to your pet’s level? Does he or she seem to recognize what is special about your pet?

At the end of the meeting, you and the adopter should agree to take the day to think about everything, and make plans to talk the next day. This is a big decision and shouldn’t be made on the spot! You might also ask the adopter for more information, and even to email you a video tour of their home so you can get a feel for where your pet will be living. Many people find this very comforting.

The adopter should definitely bring their children to the meeting. It’s important that everyone in the prospective adopter’s household come to the meeting. You definitely want to observe how the children treat your pet, and to make sure that your pet is safe for them as well.

Introduce your pet carefully to children. Let them be within view of each other, but safely out of range. Observe everyone’s body language for any red flags. When you feel comfortable that there is no danger, let them come closer together and observe them again. Continue this until the children and your pet are able to touch each other. Watch for three things:

  1. Is your pet comfortable?
  2. Are the children gentle?
  3. Are the parents watching closely to make sure their children are gentle, and giving appropriate guidance?

Introducing your pet to the potential adopter’s other pets is a bit trickier. Ideally, a pet-to-pet introduction is done slowly and carefully in the home after adoption, and sometimes it takes days or weeks to really do it right (for more on this, check out this great article about introducing dogs, and this one about introducing cats). In fact, if you’re adopting out a cat, the adopter shouldn’t even bother to bring their dog or cat to meet your cat.

If you’re adopting out a dog, though, the adopter should definitely bring his or her own dog to the meeting. You’ll want to do an initial introduction; it’s definitely not ideal, but if they don’t love each other immediately, you, and the adopter, can at least see what you’re up against. Is it just a little tension that could be mitigated by a nice, slow introduction at home? Or is it outright ferocity that the new owner isn’t prepared to handle?

No. Before the meeting, make sure the prospective adopter knows that you don’t plan on completing the adoption on the spot. This takes the pressure off of both of you, and helps you bring the meeting to an end gracefully. Also, if you decide during the meeting that you don’t want to adopt your pet to this person, it’s often more comfortable for you to relay that to them via email or phone, rather than right there on the spot.

At the end of the meeting, suggest you and the adopter both take the day to think about it, and make a plan to talk the following day.

The day after your meeting, send the applicant a really nice email, thanking them for taking the time to come and meet you and your pet. Be as honest as is safe and comfortable about the reason you’ve decided this isn’t a perfect match for your pet. Hopefully they’ll be just as gracious as you.

If you don’t feel comfortable giving a reason, don’t! Here’s a sample of an email you might send:

Dear Joe,

Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with us! I think you'll make a wonderful home for a lucky pet, but I hope you'll agree that your home isn't the best match for Fluffy. I wish you the best of luck in your search for a new family member. Thank you again!

Best,
Jane

If you want to go the extra mile, you might even send them a link to a similar pet for adoption on Adopt-a-Pet.com!

As an owner there are 2 steps to finalize an adoption, signing the adoption contract and signing the transfer-of-ownership certificate.

The adoption contract

Anytime that you are interested in an adopters’ application you will receive an email from us with tips and next steps. In the guidance section at the bottom of this email you will find a section entitled ‘When I find the right home for my pet, what next?’ You can click the ‘View contract’ button to sign your personal contract. At the bottom of the contract you will have the ability to choose the adopter to send the contract to. The adopter will be emailed the contract. When the adopter signs and submits the contract you will receive an email to confirm that the adoption is complete and that your pet’s records (if applicable) have been released to the adopter. In this final email you will also receive a link to view copies of the adoption paperwork.

Transfer-of-ownership certificate

After submitting the digital contract, you will be prompted to sign the transfer-of-ownership certificate. This contract and certificate will be emailed to the adopter to sign and submit. Once paperwork is submitted you will receive an email to confirm that the adoption is complete, pet records have been released (if applicable) and a link to view copies of the adoption paperwork.

We will follow up with you 2 weeks after you have received an application to ask if your pet has been adopted. If your pet has been adopted and you forgot to finalize the adoption, you can follow the steps to sign the adoption contract and transfer-of-ownership certificate and send to the adopter. It is very important that you take the time to finalize your adoption because we cannot release pet records to the adopter until the paperwork has been completed.

The best thing you can do to help your pet get settled into the new home is to give the new owner as much information about him or her as you can. Prepare a document with as much of the following as you can provide, and anything else you can think of:

  • Known likes and dislikes: Does your pet like to be touched a certain way? Does he growl when his feet are brushed? Does your cat refuse to be picked up and held?
  • Current diet and feeding schedule: The new owner is free to change your pet’s diet, of course, but they should try to keep everything the same for at least a few weeks. Changing environment and being without you will be stressful enough, and may cause digestive issues. Adding a change of diet to the mix can multiply that.
  • Activity preferences and schedule: Do you walk your dog one mile, twice a day? Is he or she used to just having a bit of playtime in the backyard? Does your cat get cranky unless you play with her and tire her out? Make sure you let the new owner know, so your pet can continue to get what he or she needs (and won’t be expected to do too much, if they’re not used to much activity).
  • Commands: What tricks or commands does your pet know, and what are the exact words or hand motions needed to evoke the behavior?
  • Litterbox preferences (cats): Have you discovered any quirkiness in your kitty’s litterbox-using habits? Does she need complete privacy? Does she prefer a certain brand or type of litter?

It’s also nice to send along any remaining food you have, as well as your pet’s favorite bed, toys, litterbox, leash, carrier, etc. Those items are familiar and may help to ease the transition. Help adopters to safely introduce your pet to their existing pets.

That’s between you and the adopter. When you posted your pet’s info to Adopt-a-Pet.com, you probably selected one of two options: you want the pet returned to you (or you at least want to be notified and given the option of taking the pet back), or you want the new owner to find the pet a good home. The adoption contract we supply to you will reflect your preference. In the case of the latter, the adoption contract requires the new owner to exhaust all available options (including using the Adopt-a-Pet.com rehoming service) before relinquishing the pet to an animal shelter.

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