Pet owners love their pets. To many people, pets are like family. They are loved and cared for, pampered and coddled. There are times when circumstances change and a new home has to be found for your pet. The loss of a job may make keeping your pet unaffordable. Someone in your household may develop pet allergies. You may have health issues that make pet care a strain. You may be relocating and be unable to take your pet with you. Finding a new home is a serious and difficult decision. It is serious because you want to do everything you can to ensure that your pet's new home is a loving, caring and safe home. It is difficult because the loss of the companionship of your pet brings emotions such as grief, guilt and sadness. To put it simply, it is a tough decision. When you find yourself in the position of having to do this, there are some steps you can take to ease the emotional pain and create the best possibilities for finding a good home.
First, prepare yourself. You are preparing to experience a loss and it will hurt. Don't stifle your emotions. Have an honest talk with yourself. Remind yourself that you don't have a choice about finding a new home. You do, however, have options in the selection of the home. Determine to do the best job you can. Remind yourself that because you care so deeply for your pet, you are doing everything that you can to find them a good home. Sometimes, genuine love and care means that someone else has to take care of our pets when we can't. Spend some time with your pet before you head out to their new home.
Second, do your homework. Speak with your vet about recommendations of pet friendly homes. Contact rescue groups for your particular pet. Many of these groups provide excellent foster homes as well as a thoroughly screened adoption service. Speak with your friends and family to see if they know anyone looking for a pet like yours. Quite often they will know someone who will provide a good home.
Third, interview potential owners. Ask questions concerning work schedules, length of time the pet will be alone in the house, other pets in the home, fenced in yards, and experience in caring for a pet such as yours. If possible, arrange a home visit without your pet. Be upfront about your love and conern for your pet and your intention to be thorough in finding a home.
Fourth, have the vet give your pet a checkup. This may involve a physical, updating of vaccinations, grooming, dental work and trimming nails. Prepare a packet of all medical records concerning your pet for the new owner. Prior to taking your pet to its new home, give it a bath or good brushing.
Fifth, plan to say goodbye. When you have decided on whom you will entrust your pet to, arrange to take your pet to their home. Bring all medical records and other documentation. Be sure to include all toys, blankets, and favorite things familiar to your pet. Speak reassuringly. Act relaxed and friendly around the new family and surroundings. Play with your pet and allow the new family members to gradually take over the interaction. Tell them about any routines or commands that you use. While they are interacting with your pet, leave. Allow yourself time to grieve.
Some final things to consider. If you observe anything that could potentially be harmful to your pet, call it off. It will give you peace of mind and may protect your pet. Offer to take your pet back if it becomes apparent that it is not working out. Ask permission to call and see how your pet is doing. Call once or twice but no more. Continual calling is not fair to the new owner and prohibits you moving on with your life. Doing everything you can to ensure that your pet's new home is the best home possible will go a long way in helping you find peace of mind.