We work hard to make sure that we take care of all of our pets here at Freedom Dog Rescue. But, unfortunately we can't do it without people like you and your donations of time and money. So, if you ever feel like you want to be a part of our family and help some of the best animals around, check us out. 

It's hard knowing what to do when you're about to adopt. But, we make this process even easier when you adopt with us, because we have trained volunteers that will go over every possible question or concern you and your family might have on introducing your newest pal to the family. 

We know you've always wanted a dog. And now's the time friends! We are here to help you get ready for your new family member, and as soon as you're ready to take the big plunge we're here to help you find him/her. Owning an animal is, after all, one of the most gratifying things you can do.

We understand that there may come a time when your situation unexpectedly changes and you feel like you need to find your beloved furry friend a new home. We know how hard this decision can be for the whole family. We would like to share some tips or ideas for those who might be thinking of surrendering their pet. These steps might help to keep your pet in your home. 

1. If you are surrendering your dog due to suspected allergies in the family. 

  • Your baby is not likely to be allergic as they say children really do not develop allergies until at least 2 years old
  • There are a series of shots that you can take that will help with your allergies, ask your doctor for details
  • There are special filters and attachments for your furnace that you can purchase to help with pet dander. Call your local Canadian Tire or hardware store for answers, or call your heat provider for details

2. You have just had a new baby and do not have the time for your dog. 

  • You can hire a dog walker to help during the transition stage
  • You can also enroll your dog in a doggy daycare for a few days a week. 
  • Take your dog with you on walks with your baby, you may find they will both enjoy it

3. My dog has become aggressive towards cats, dogs or people. 

  • Seek training, ask your local vet for information
  • Muzzle your dog while you walk to protect others until the solution is found
  • If your dog is extremely aggressive, especially with a bite history, consult your veterinarian. After being assessed by your vet, a trainer and a canine behavioralist, euthanasia might be the ONLY option.

4. Financial difficulty

  • Try contacting your local food bank to see if they can donate some dog food to you
  • Contact your vet to see if they have any options, or payment plans for vetting when needed.
  • Contact rescue groups to see if they can donate food or help in any way. You would be surprised at how helpful they can all be to help you keep your pet

5. Moving to a smaller home 

  • Bring your pet with you, and take them for increased walks and outdoors time; get to know your neighborhood together
  • You would be surprised how quickly your pet will adapt to a smaller home versus how poorly they would adapt in a shelter environment without you, possibly facing death

6. Divorce (life change) 

  • Try to work out a time share schedule for your pet
  • Seek family members who may be able to temporarily foster your pet until you get your life back in order

7. Under socialized dog

  • Bring your pet everywhere with you until they get used to new situations and muzzle them if necessary until they learn to act  properly in new situations
  • Seek training options and suggestions from your vet and trainers. Then choose options that are in the best interest for the pet.

DISCLAIMER: Freedom Dog Rescue, takes no responsibility for tried and failed possible solutions, we are only trying to offer solutions that may not have been tried or considered. Please contact your local veterinarian before making any decisions, as they are a wealth of information and can offer alternatives to surrendering your companion. 

If you have tried everything that you can think of, including research on the internet and asking your vet, please know that most rescues have waiting lists. A rescue may be able to courtesy post your pet if you are able to keep your pet until it is adopted. Do your research about the rescue you are surrendering your dog to. Make sure they have a code of ethics that they follow, an adoption process and a contract as well as a return policy in the event of a failed adoption or life change. Sadly not all rescues are created equal, ask your local rescue if you can call their references such as past adopters.  Satisfied adopters will let you know that you are doing the right thing, as they have been through the adoption process already. Please fill out our Owner Surrender Form and email it to if you would like to speak to someone at Freedom about surrendering your pet.

If you decide to surrender your dog to a shelter, please know there is a real possibility that your dog can be euthanized, and not always in a humane way. This is especially true of a dog with any aggressive or un-socialized behavior.  Do your research about the shelter where you are intending to drop your family pet. Gassing shelters and heart stick shelters, which are more common in the states, do exist in Canada. Is this the way you want your pet and companion to leave this world?  

If you would like to try and re-home your pet yourself, you can list your pet in classified ads and Kijiji ads BUT please NEVER list your pet for free.  Even if you just request $100, it would show that the potential adopters are somewhat serious. Always make sure your pet is spayed or neutered prior to rehoming, otherwise a puppy mill/backyard breeder could pose as a loving family to adopt your pet and they could actually end up in a puppy mill.  This is especially true for purebred dogs.  Don’t be shy to ask for personal and veterinary references and even a home visit before handing over your pet.  You can use our Home Visit Checklist for suggestions of things to look for in the new potential home. 

Surrendering a DoG​