STUDY: REASONS FOR RE-HOMING THE FAMILY DOG

We know dogs and cats are re-homed, but do we really understand why? A better question we can ask ourselves is, can we do something about it? 

An estimated 6.12 million households re-home pets every five years.

Weiss, E., Gramann, S., Spain, C.V. and Slater, M. (2015) Goodbye to a Good Friend: An Exploration
of the Re-Homing of Cats and Dogs in the U.S. Open Journal of Animal Sciences, 5, 435-456.

KARE’s mission is to reduce that number wherever we can.

The Top 3 Reasons for a Rehomed Pet

  1. Pet Problem, such as (perceived) Aggression, Destruction, Health issues
  2. Family Problem, such as Health issues or Allergies
  3. Housing Problems, such as Landlord/Rental Agreements or Not enough space

KARE, as well as other reputable rescues and shelters, have sometimes faced criticisms regarding our rescue and adoption process. Our shared experiences, and studies like this one, may help shed some light on the situation. By taking the time to ask ourselves the important questions, we gain a better understanding of the situation and it’s driving factors.

KARE’s Resolution to Reduce Rehomed Pets

Meeting a future where all dogs truly find their forever homes is KARE’s motivation for rescuing relinquished or abandoned dogs. Establishing a facility to host education programs intended to improve communication and relationships with pets and their owners is how we can keep them there.

  1. Pet Problem – KARE believes in intervention and prevention through education. It is the reason for teaching and utilizing positive and force-free methods in our obedience classes. (It’s 2019 and although some still consider it a “trend”, you can see here, here, and here that it’s been around for much longer than just the recent decade). We also believe that rehabilitation is possible, and setting up for success includes placing dogs in a living situation closely related to their future forever homes. (This is why having a slew of diverse foster homes comes in handy.)
  2. Family/Housing Problem – Respect for a dog’s history and possible traumas, as well as the potential adopter’s or foster’s home life is what gives credence to our scrutinous adoption process. At risk of oversimplifying: a good match between dog and family is the difference between relinquishment and a forever family.

After 20 years of dreaming, planning, and saving, and with a lot of help from the Kitsap Great Give, we were able to open our KARE Training and Activity Center in 2018. This facility serves as a centrally-located “headquarters” for our team, improving our organization’s day-to-day operations, as well as provide a safe space for those who are struggling with behavioral issues caused by environmental stressors through our private play yard (available for bookings) and classes/workshops.