Thinking of Emigrating?
WHAT TO KNOW AND DO IF YOU ARE EMIGRATING & RE-HOMING YOUR FURRY KIDS!
Animal rescue groups are literally flooded with emails from people who are emigrating and need shelter for their furry kids because they are opting to leave them behind. Here is a critical list of advice in this regard:
- TRY HARDER to take them with you. This used to be a mission, but nowadays, pet transport is much simpler and rules have changed! They are part of your family – They Trust you to care for them – FOREVER! You would not leave your child behind, in fact, I would like to believe that you would buy them a plane ticket and take them with you – FOOD FOR THOUGHT.
- EXPLORE THE OPTIONS - Do not fail them without 1st doing all the homework and exploring all the choices. There are far too many assumptions about quarantine laws and rules in various countries - and often these assumptions are not based on fact. Many countries have updated and relaxed their rules. So MAKE SURE! If you have explored all the foreseeable options to take them with, and you cannot because of cost or quarantine protocols, then as a last resort, you should do the following:
- AS SOON AS YOU SUSPECT YOU WILL HAVE TO LEAVE THEM BEHIND - Contact a REPUTABLE animal rescue and re-homing group in your area and ask them to help you NETWORK your animals in search of a FOREVER HOME. DO NOT contact them 1 week or a few days before you are bound to leave. This is not acceptable and there is no excuse!
- SHELTERS ARE FLOODED. We have a pet overpopulation problem on our hands. CONTACT THEM EARLY - we strongly suggest that you do so at LEAST 3 MONTHS IN ADVANCE of your departure date. This allows time to create full profiles for each of your animals, with good photographs so that the rescue and re-homing group can network them in the various animal lover circles.
- PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO RE-HOME THEM by yourselves. Animal rescue groups specifically do adoption applications and home-checks in order to sift committed adopters from those who are either having a knee-jerk sympathy response, or are not able to offer a secure home for the long-haul, or have dubious motives. This is the unfortunate reality of our modern society.
- IF YOU CARE FOR THEM - DO IT RIGHT. You would not give your child to any passerby, or to people you do not know well enough. DO NOT DO THE SAME with your furry child.
- GIVE YOUR PET THE BEST CHANCE FOR ADOPTION - Make sure that your animal is sterilised, with vaccinations up-to-date, and that they are microchipped and wearing a collar and tag. Not only will you be giving your furry kid the BEST possible foundation for the rest of their lives, but you will also ensure that they are always healthy and safe.
- DO NOT EXPECT OTHERS TO FOOT THE BILL: by ensuring that all is up to date, you will be helping the rescue organisation who is assisting you, to keep their costs down. The reality is that rescue groups owe thousands of rands to various vets because there are SIMPLY TOO MANY. It is YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to take care of these vital aspects.
- HELP THE RESCUE GROUP: who is assisting you - the responsible networking of your furry kids is something you do together. Take an interest in what is happening - ask where their profiles/flyers are being circulated, ask how you can help, make sure that you circulate the networking flyers (created by the rescue org) in your own networks. THIS IS A TEAM EFFORT - all for the sake of the BEST FUTURE for YOUR furry child. DO NOT pass the buck! And even if you end up finding someone who may offer a good home, remember that the actual adoption process (accompanied by home-checks) MUST be done by the rescue organisation themselves - they have the experience in this area - let them do the sifting and checking.
- UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD YOU EVER POST YOUR ANIMALS on a "FREE TO A GOOD HOME" type of site! Gumtree and other platforms for classified advertising is simply NOT appropriate for the FATE OF AN INNOCENT SOUL. And it is the perfect picking ground for animal trafficking and dog fighting syndicates. WAKE UP - it is happening! DO NOT PUT YOUR FURRY FRIEND AT RISK. Animal rescue groups make use of specific animal welfare platforms on social media in order to regulate the messaging and content, and to tap into dedicated animal lover communities. The home-checks also ensure that the parties who respond are legitimate and trustworthy.
- UNDERSTAND THAT IF YOU DUMP YOUR PET AT A KILL-SHELTER, THEIR CHANCES OF BEING RE-HOMED ARE LESS THAN 50%. If you sign a surrender form, your pet essentially becomes the "property" of that organisation and they can euthanase the animal on arrival or after a very short period of time. Unfortunately, a practice has also emerged over the years in which kill-shelters will not clearly explain and acknowledge that this will/may happen. Too many people live under the illusion that their animals will be re-homed. SO DO NOT TAKE THE CHANCE! IF YOU DO THE HOMEWORK EARLY ENOUGH, THERE WILL BE NO NEED to GO TO A KILL-SHELTER.
- GET UP TO DATE IAND ACCURATE NFORMATION - Please note that QUARANTINE requirements in various countries have been updated and changed, and in many instances, scrapped or eliminated. Therefore, please do NOT act on hearsay - do the homework and find out/make sure, and then weigh up all options. Their futures are worth the effort.
We ask you to PLEASE SHARE this information widely so that more people may have access to this information and advice, and may reconsider the way in which they go about their emigration - with specific reference to the fate of the innocent furry child in their care.
WE ARE THEIR EVERYTHING. LET's ACT LIKE IT.