Screening Potential Families for Your Pet
You are in the best position to find your pet a new home that is right for him (and be sure his new family feels the same way). By being honest about your pet and asking a few questions, you'll be sure that your pet and his new family are a good long-term match.
1. Visit at their house, making it clear that this is just a visit. Do not plan to leave the pet!
2. Ask questions!
Keep in mind that this not only gives you some additional information, but it also makes sure that they have made a thoughtful decision. Ask:
- Have they ever had a pet before. If so, what happened to the pet(s)?
- If a dog,
do they have a fenced yard? If not, how will
the dog be controlled when outside?
- Where will the pet sleep? Where will the pet be when alone in home?
- Have they considered the costs involved (food, medical bills etc.)?
- If a cat, will the cat be an indoor cat?
3. Give potential families a realistic picture of the pet's temperament and history, and be sure that you are comfortable with their ability to work with it. Consider:
- Activity level (and any unusual habits like bolting or jumping)
- Level of training
- Health history
(and be sure to provide vaccination records)
- Good with children? Other pets?
- Other habits (chewer, likes to sleep in bed, etc.)
4. Verify their contact information. Try to get a home and a work phone.
5. Ask potential families what veterinarian they have used in the past, and call him/her.
Ask if the family has consistently provided required health care (vaccinations, spay/neuter, etc).
6. If the family rents, contact their landlord to verify that pets are allowed.
7. Charge a fee (if you'd prefer, donate it to a rescue/shelter).
This helps ensure that the potential adopter isn't a buncher (a person who collects free dogs and sells to research) and the person/family is willing to pay for necessary medical expenses, food etc.