Okaw Veterinary Clinic

140 W. Sale
Tuscola, IL 61953

(217)253-3221

www.okawvetclinic.com

Who Gets Fluffy? 
Re-homing a pet after an owner cannot keep their beloved pet

 

Whenever you have a pet, it is a good idea to at least think about who will take this pet on in the event you are not able to care for it. When elderly people have pets, this is especially important. It is common for older people to have sudden changes in their health necessitating that someone take over the care of this pet.

Adult pets are the most difficult for a shelter or rescue to find a new home for. People want to adopt a young puppy or kitten more often than an older pet. So, before there is a need, ask your family members or friends if they would be able to take this pet on. Sometimes we assume that a son or daughter will automatically adopt this pet, but that may not be possible. Assuming your veterinarian will be able to home this pet is also not very realistic. Veterinarians can help in the effort, but are not as well networked even as the shelter for finding a new home.

Finding a new home takes time. It may take a month or two depending on the age of this pet, and any health problems this pet may have. Sometimes it does not take as long.

Think of the family members or friends who already know and like this pet. If they cannot take this pet on, they can help broaden the search for a new home. If there is someone identified, be sure that all the family members involved in the senior's care know about it. Put that person's name and contact information somewhere that is easy to find. It is a good idea to make up a list of medications and dates of care so the new owner can keep up with the pet's health care. If possible, update the pet's care so the initial cost is not a burden on the new owner.

To make the transition easier on the pet, have the same bed, food, food bowls, time of day of feeding, walking schedule and other routines the same. Dogs especially thrive on routine. Cats need to have the routine maintained also.