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What to Look for in a Rescue/Shelter Organization

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A RESCUE/SHELTER

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The majority of rescue organizations / shelters found in Canada are reputable and well run; however it is important to do some research to ensure that the organization you are considering is credible. The following is a listing of some of the things that a good organization does:

  • The responsible rescue places the welfare and happiness of the animal first.
  • As a first step in the adoption process, an application form should be completed. The rescue/shelter then performs careful screening of potential adopters and verifies references — the goal being to match up the right pet with the right home.
  • All pets should be spayed/neutered prior to being placed and, if for any reason (ie., too young or some medical reason) spaying/neutering is not done prior to placement, this is included as a requirement within the adoption contract.
  • All animals ready for adoption should have been examined by a veterinarian and be up to date on vaccines.
  • All animals ready for adoption should have been temperament tested.
  • The rescue/shelter should provide full disclosure about the dog, including any medical and/or behavioural problems.
  • Depending on the pet to be adopted, the rescue may require that adopters participate in training classes.
  • The rescue/shelter should offer ongoing support to adopters.
  • A written adoption contract should be provided and should include all requirements/expectations including a clause stating that the pet must be returned to the rescue if the adopter decides to relinquish the pet.
  • Rescue organizations should be able to provide references from shelters in their area and in general should be working with those shelters.
  • A reputable rescue operates as a not-for-profit entity and/or registered charity.

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