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The Process

Rabbit being held by ownerTaking on a rescue pet is a very rewarding experience for both you and your chosen animal. It won’t take long for your new companion to become part of your home and family life.

Before you visit one of our centres, we suggest you spend some time with the other members of your household deciding what sort of pet would be right for you.

Five steps in the rehoming process

  1. Visit your local rescue centre. Our centres are open most days of the week all year round. Our staff are there to help you find the right pet – so please ask for help and advice while you are there.
  2. Tell us about your home and lifestyle. Do you work or is there someone at home? Live in a city flat or in the country? We’ll help you make sure your chosen pet is the right one for you. We will ask for more ID information too.
  3. Make regular visits to the rehoming centres. This is the time to start a bond with your pet and make sure it is the right decision for you and your family. If it’s needed, then that’s the time we’ll advise on training tips too.
  4. Home visit. Allow us to visit you at home to discuss more about life with a rescue pet and to help you prepare for the new arrival.
  5. Take your new pet home. After you sign a contract, make a payment and complete the paperwork, you can take your new pet home with all the appropriate ownership documents. Each animal rehomed by NAWT can come with 4 weeks’ free Petplan insurance.

Rehoming a Pet FAQ’s

Is there a fee to rehome a pet from NAWT?

Yes, we charge a rehoming fee to help towards the cost of the animal’s care during their stay with us. However, in return for your rehoming fee you receive a loyal companion who has been fully vet-checked, wormed, neutered, vaccinated, microchipped and has free insurance for their first 4 weeks in your care. You will also receive ongoing support and advice from the animal care team at the centre, should you need it. We believe that all of these factors combined offer great value for money in return for the modest fees we have to charge. Prices vary between species from £30 for a Guinea Pig, £60 for a rabbit, £100 for a cat and £200 for a dog. Rehoming fees for birds and field animals can vary and these can be discussed with the relevant Centre Manager.

I have a young child and would like to introduce a pet to my home, but some of your animals can’t be rehomed with children under a certain age. Why is this?

There are varying reasons but usually it will be because we don’t have enough background information on the animal. Some of the animals we rehome were previously strays and therefore our knowledge of their behaviour before they arrived in our care is very limited. The safety of you, your family and the animal are our top priority so we do everything we can to find a perfect match for every family looking to rehome a pet. This can sometimes mean the process takes longer than people initially hope, but eventually we hope to send every family home with the perfect companion to suit their lifestyle and home environment.

I’ve seen an animal on your website that I’d like to rehome. What should I do next?

Give the centre a call. Their contact details can be found here. The team will talk to you about the animal and what you’re looking for in a pet, and they’ll be able to let you know whether the animal you have in mind will be suitable for your lifestyle and home environment. Following this initial conversation, you can arrange an appointment to come along and meet the animal. As you can imagine, meeting an animal in person can be very different to seeing a picture online so this is an important first step to help you decide for certain whether or not you would like to reserve the animal.

I’ve met an animal, I love them, I want to rehome them! What next?

Following your meeting with your potential new pet, you can ask the team to reserve the animal so that they are temporarily unavailable for rehoming by anyone else whilst you go through the next steps in the process to make extra sure that this is the perfect pet for you.

What happens after I have reserved an animal?

After you’ve reserved the animal you’d like to rehome, you will be asked to return to the centre 3 or 4 more times to visit them and spend some time getting to know them. You’ll also be asked to bring the other members of your family or household along to meet the animal to ensure everyone gets along. If you are rehoming a dog then you will also be asked to bring along any other dogs in the household to see how they get on in an introduction at the centre. Finally, someone from the centre will arrange a home visit to check the home environment meets the needs of your potential new pet. Here, the home checker will be able to help with advice on any changes you may like to make to ensure your home is ready for the arrival of your new pet.

After I reserve the animal, are they definitely mine?

The steps we take after you reserve an animal are to ensure that the pet you have chosen is suitable for your home environment and lifestyle. It is also important for us to establish whether or not you have the necessary experience to meet the needs of the particular animal you have chosen, for example some breeds of dog can require a more experienced owner, especially after they’ve undergone some upheaval in their life. If our dedicated animal care team make the difficult decision that unfortunately the animal you’ve chosen wouldn’t fit in to your lifestyle or environment, then they will do all they can to help you continue your search for the perfect match. We appreciate some people can be disappointed if their first attempt to rehome an animal doesn’t go as planned, but these decisions are made in the best interests of you, your family and the animal. We often hear from our rehomers that when they were eventually matched with the right pet, it was well worth the wait so please bear with us if your first choice doesn’t work out.

After I have met with my potential new pet a few times, the home check is complete and the rehoming is agreed, when can I take them home?

There isn’t a simple answer to this question as it is dependent on whether or not your new pet is awaiting any further veterinary work. For example, they might be awaiting their second round of vaccinations; in which case a rehoming date will be set after that. In other cases, the animal will be ready to head off to their new home within a couple of days. However, the Animal Care team will keep regular contact with you, updating you on the next steps in the process and they will arrange a suitable collection date with you.

After I take my new pet home, will I receive any ongoing support?

Absolutely! We never stop caring. We are always eager to hear how our previous residents are getting on in their new homes, and we expect that many new owners may think of questions further down the line, which they didn’t think to ask within the rehoming process. So please call us, it’s what we’re here for! Whatever question or problem you may have, you can almost guarantee that we’ve heard it before so you’re not alone and we want to help. We can even assist you with further training if you have rehomed a dog who you think would benefit from some more reward-based training outside of the centre. Please ask us, and we will do all we can to help you.

What if I change my mind?

Sometimes a rehoming simply doesn’t work out. We understand that circumstances can change and unforeseen factors can play a part in forcing someone to decide that a rehoming isn’t going to work out. We will always accept an animal back into our care and in fact, we ask that you come to us first if you make the tough decision to give them up. They will be welcomed back into our care with lots of familiar faces that will help to settle them in the transition.