New Year, New Home!It's a sad fact that animal rescue centres are always busier in the period following Christmas. If you've been thinking of acquiring a pet, it’s a good time to consider rehoming one.
Is my lifestyle suitable for rehoming a cat or dog? What are the practicalities?
If you’re at work all day, like to go out for hours and love weekends abroad, your lifestyle may not be suitable to owning a dog. They are pack animals and can become distressed and lonely. A cat, or better still two cats, might be a better choice.
I've never owned a pet before.
There are thousands of successful pet adoptions each year. Animal charities are always happy to advise on which pet is best suited to your circumstances. They have the best interests on the animal at heart and will not let you rehome any animal for which you are entirely unsuited.
Will my new cat or dog need to be trained?
Every animal is unique: it's a myth that all rescue pets are aggressive or timid. But equally they will need help to settle into their new life with you. The charity will advise about training and behaviour considerations for each cat or dog that’s ready to go to its forever home.
Do dogs and cats find it difficult to adapt to a new owner?
Research has shown that dogs and cats dream about their owners (though quite how the researchers knew this wasn't specified!). Being rehomed is stressful, but animals learn to love again surprisingly quickly. Dogs and cats are naturally curious creatures so will quickly begin to explore new surroundings and investigate the inhabitants.
If you love animals but don’t feel ready to rehome one, why not consider volunteering for a charity instead. You will learn a lot, and make new friends too, both the human and the furry kind!
By Sarah Davey