Rehoming Pets

Now, before we begin I would just like to note that before you bring any pet into your home you must be prepared to care for it it’s entire life. However, sometimes your life will change, and you may be forced to rehome a pet; that’s life. Here I will discuss:

The Five Most Common Reasons For Rehoming:

  • The Caretaker Gets Bored
  • A New Baby
  • Finances
  • Moving
  • Allergies

Your Pet’s Ad:

  • How Much Information?
  • Adoption Fee?

And how to choose an adopter.

Just letting you know, I’m not writing this because I’m rehoming Beanie, but for educational purposes.

Reasons To Rehome: The Caretaker Loses Interest

Many people impulsively, or in general, get a pet because they think it’s fun. Yes, it’s fun, but if you don’t know what you’re in for you may not know what the definition of ‘fun’ in the pet-world is. A pet being fun totally depends on what kind of animal you’re looking for. If you like pets to watch, maybe an amphibian; if you like playing with your pet, maybe a dog, or if you just like the presence of an animal cats are perfect, low maintenance animals to keep you company. But when you go out and get a pet not knowing what it’s common personality traits are then that’s what usually causes boredom when owning a pet.

Being bored of a pet can cause many issues, such as forgetting about them and not taking care of them, for example. The best way to prevent these situations is by educating people about animals and their traits and care. This will prevent the most common reason to get bored of a pet, resulting in fewer pets being rehomed. If you’re in a situation where you’re bored of your pet, I recommend learning more about their species and trying a few more weeks before you post that ‘For Adoption,’ ad.

Reasons To Rehome: A New Baby

New babies are common with pet owners, and typically a stay-at-home mom cannot take care of pets and a baby. This is understandable, but I would recommend trying a few weeks before putting your pet up for adoption. It’s not fair to adopt them planning for them to spend their whole life with you, just to be given to someone else years, or even months later.

Reasons To Rehome: Finances

No one plans on losing their source of income, but it does happen. In a financial crisis if you cannot afford to properly care for your pet(s), it is best to rehome them for their well-being. When you adopt a pet you want to be caring for them the best you can, and if they’re not getting everything they require it is considered animal cruelty, so in these cases rehoming is necessary. Meanwhile, if you’re struggling with money, and your pet is getting everything it requires please consider keeping them.

Reasons To Rehome: Moving

This is a very common reason people rehome their pets, and it is reasonable depending on the pet and how far you’re going. For example, if you were moving across the country and it would take three days to get there, taking a rodent is a terrible idea due to the fact they are very stress-prone. Meanwhile, a dog or cat would probably make the trip just fine. Every animal is different; always remember to do what you believe is best for your animal; you know them best. Do not rehome your pet if you’re going on vacation; find a petsitter!

Reasons To Rehome: Allergies

Sometimes people will adopt pets, and in the first week of owning them they realize they are allergic to the animal. These situations are sad, but are pretty reasonable. Sometimes you or a family member may develop an allergy over a week or more, and this is a valid reason to rehome, or return the animal where you got them from. A good idea is to hang out with a friend or relative’s pet before you get your own, if they have the species you’re interested in; this is a good way to see if you’re allergic. I have a post about Hamsters and Allergies, check that out here to learn more!

Creating an Ad: How Much Information?

The ad needs to be at least a paragraph long, but short enough to be read aloud within a minute; after you put the basic information the viewer will have enough info to decide whether to contact you or not. The information that you will need to include is:

  • The pet’s age.
  • Pet’s gender, or list if you’re uncertain.
  • Their species, breed, fur type or morph.
  • Where you got them from.
  • Their current diet, and their favorite treat.
  • Any health issues they’ve had.
  • Is the animal spayed/neutered?
  • Their current and previous home/enclosure.
  • Any requirements about the pet’s future home.
  • Their basic temperament.
  • Vaguely note the reason you’re rehoming.
  • Anything you’re selling/giving away with them.
  • The adoption fee.

As an example:

I have a 3 year old Shorthair Domestic Orange Tabby cat for adoption. I got him from a friend who could no longer take care of him. I currently feed him Friskies cat food, and he loves any kind of wet cat food. He’s never shown any signs of health issues, and he has been neutered. He is an indoor cat, but did come from an outdoor home. I would love for him to go to an indoor home, and he would be very comfortable with gentle, older children. He’s very friendly, and loves having his forehead scratched. He is also a shoulder-cat and enjoys riding around on people. I would love to keep him, but I’m moving very far away and it would stress him out. He comes with his favorite blanket, toys, any leftover food and his dishes. His adoption fee is $20.

Creating an Ad: Adoption Fee

An adoption fee is critical for your pet to go to a good home, for several reasons including:

  • Someone may be looking for free snake-food.
  • They may be surfing the web, see a cute animal and get it without any knowledge, resulting in your pet going to a bad home.
  • A backyard-breeder may be seeking out breeding animals, which are usually kept in improper conditions.

So there are valid reasons to add an adoption fee, and people are actually drawn to ads with adoption fees because they unwittingly want a pet they believe is valuable. However, you don’t want the fee to be super high, or super low. Typically you want the fee to be about half of what you paid for the animal, only no less then $10. I mean, it does depend on the fur type/breed/morph of the animal, but just be reasonable, you may want to cut it a bit more if you really need a home for your pet. Think of what you would be willing to pay for a pet. You also don’t want to look like you’re just trying to get your money back. I would say an average is:

  • $10 for a Hamster, Gerbil, common Amphibian, smaller bird, Rat or Mouse
  • $20 for a Guinea Pig, Sugar Glider or Cat
  • $40 for a Rabbit, common reptile, or small dog
  • $100+ for a large dog, valuable dog breed, or rare/valuable reptile morph.

The adoption fee is totally your dicision, and you can add to it if you want to charge for any supplies you’re giving away with the pet.

Choosing an Adopter

Finding a good adopter can be challenging, especially if you have a specific criteria you’d like them to meet. See if a friend or family member can take your pet first. If your friends or family cannot take your pet, you’ll start looking for adopters. Make a list of all the things you want the new home and owner to be, here’s an example:

  • Indoor home.
  • No pet snakes.
  • Older kids are fine.

So you can make your list as long or short as you want. When someone contacts you about your pet, keep an eye out for some basic tells:

  • If your adoption fee is reasonable and they try to lower it significantly (say, you’re asking $60 and they only want to pay $30).
  • If you get weird vibes from them (always trust your gut).
  • They seem uneducated about the species.
  • If they try to dodge your questions, or answer vaguely.

If the person passes this test, and you feel like they’d be a good home for you pet, then setup a meeting. Remember, you can always say no to a potential adopter if you’re not comfortable with selling your animal to them.

Meeting Adopters

When you meet up with an adopter do so in a public area if possible.

Get them to hold the animal (if it’s small enough). Animals can sense a lot, so if they don’t like the person they will let you know, just be prepared to catch them if they react badly to the person.

See how the adopter reacts to the animal. Ask them what they think, if the animal is what they expected, and if they like the animal personality, temperament and appearance wise.

You want to ask questions before the person has time to prepare an answer; that way you get their honest opinion.

Make sure you feel comfortable with the person; animals aren’t the only ones with instincts!

By using these guidelines, and your gut, I hope you can find a safe home for your beloved pet, if you absolutely must rehome them. Remember, always try to keep your pet, unless they need a new home for their well-being.

If you’re interested in hamster-related content be sure to like this post and follow the blog, and I’ll be back on Tuesday with more small pet care, DIYs, recipes, cage setups, stories and more, have a ham-tastic day!


  • Repeatedly go through your reason(s) to rehome; are they reasonable?
  • When creating an ad go through my checklist and make sure you have adequate information.
  • The ad should take about a minute to read aloud.
  • Always trust your instincts when choosing an adopter; if you have a bad feeling about them follow your gut.
  • You always want to be trying to keep your animal(s).
  • Only ever rehome a pet for their well-being.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *