We often receive requests from owners wanting to surrender their huskies to us. We are a small rescue with just 12 rescue kennels. Approximately 300 huskies a month enter the high-kill shelter system in and around Los Angeles! We just cannot keep up and as such we are not in a position to bring them all into rescue. We can, however, offer you these suggestions on how best to re-home your dog yourself.
The reasons people need to re-home their dog are many. They can range from the death of the primary caregiver to moving to a place that does not allow pets to behavioral problems with their dog. Read on for our advice.
Finding a Good Home For Your Husky Yourself
You owe it to your dog to try your very best to find a safe, knowledgable and loving home where they can live out their lives. If you decide that rehoming your pet is the best option, keep in mind that your home is usually the best place for your pet while you search for an adopter. By taking on the task of finding your pet a home, you can also reduce competition for limited space and resources in shelters or rescues.
Make sure your pet is current on all vaccines and checked by a veterinarian. Making sure your pet is spayed or neutered may also make her more likely to be chosen by a new owner and it will definitely ensure that your pet will not have a litter and add to the over-population of unwanted huskies.
Your personal network is the best pool of adopters for your pet. Ask your veterinarian if you can place a poster advertising your pet’s need for a new home.
Place flyers promoting your pet at work, school, and other public places you frequent. Include a good-quality photo and appealing description of your pet. A good sample blurb for your flyer goes something like this:
“Fun loving, 50 lb. adult, male Husky needs a new home. Needs a secure yard and consistent exercise. Great with kids and loves to run and hike. For more info, please contact...
Post your pet’s photo and story on your social media platforms and ask your friends to share it on their social streams.
Be prepared to share details about your pet's personality and how she gets along with other pets and people. Does your dog do well with kids? Are they active and need lots of exercise, or content to lay at your feet for hours a day? Are they dog friendly, cat friendly? Require medication? etc.
Share your pet’s favorite things and not-so-favorite things. And share any medical or behavior issues your pet is experiencing so that potential new owners will have the information they need to determine if your pet would be a good fit for their family. Be honest about his potentially negative faults as well. Does he like to dig holes in the yard? Is he housebroken? Does he require medication? People are more than willing to give a dog with special needs a home, but they deserve to know what type of pet they are getting. You owe it to them to tell perspective new pet parents the truth.
Some sheltering and rescue organizations may post your pet’s picture and profile on their website as a courtesy listing, while your pet stays in your home. Your local agencies may have other programs to help you re-home your pet.
What Not To Do
DO NOT post FREE TO GOOD HOME ads on sites like craigslist. Many dogs that are given away like this end up being used as ‘bait dogs’ in dog fighting rings or being sold on for medical testing!
Meeting Potential Adopters
If you find somebody who you think is a good match, ask to meet them in a local park, especially if they are a stranger. This will let you see how they get along with your pet in a neutral setting. See how they approach your dog, watch their body language. Listen to what types of questions they ask. Have the WHOLE family meet the dog, it is important that everyone in the household is onboard with adding a new dog to their household.
If the other party has another dog, have them meet and take the two dogs for a walk together at the park. See how the dogs interact. Do they play together easily? Is one afraid of another?
It’s important to ask the potential new owners some questions. Have they ever owned a husky before? If not have they researched the breed? Do they have a secure yard? Who will be spending most of the time with the husky and will the dog be allowed inside the house?
Questions like these are vital in determining who would be a good fit for your pet. Trust your instincts. If something is telling you somebody is not a good fit, chances are they are not. Trust your dogs' instincts as well. If they don't like the potential new owners, it's a good bet that they aren't a good fit.
It may take a little longer to find a good home for your pet yourself, but this is the only way to ensure that your husky does not end up euthanized in the over-crowded shelter system.
Solving Behavioral Problems
Behavioral problems with your dog can often be a fairly easy to fix. Oftentimes undesirable behavior is a result of not enough exercise or stimulation. Getting your husky out for runs, and playtime and consistent, daily leashed walks a must. A tired husky is a happy husky.
We strongly suggest consulting a reputable animal trainer rather than rushing out to try and re-home your dog. The trainer can show you what to do to help solve their problem. Consistent follow through on the part of you and your family can mean the difference between your dog continuing to be a loving member of your family and you having to re-home a dog with bad behavior.
Consult your vet or local animal shelters in your area for referrals to a good trainer. Try asking your friends if they know of any good trainers as well. Huskies are stubborn and strong-willed, intelligent dogs, they also have a tendency to be “mouthy” so a trainer that is not familiar with the breed may totally misread this as a “biting”behavior, so make sure they have Siberian Husky knowledge.
Talk with your trainer before you hire them. Inform them of the behavioral problems your dog is having and ask them if they feel they would be able to help you. If you do decide to use a trainer, make sure all members of the family are involved with the training, including the children. The consistent follow through that your dog needs to stop their bad behavior needs to come from every member of your family.