Meow & Forever
It’s a huge decision to give up a pet, no matter what the reason is. Often, people take them to a shelter or rescue for surrender. The reality is if you have the time and ability to find your pet a new home, it will offer a much smoother transition for both of you and spare cats the stressful shelter environment. Meow & Forever is designed to help you find the best family for your cat by offering resources to keep them out of shelters.
How to Rehome Your Cat on Your Own
If rehoming is the best solution for you and your pet, here are some ideas and resources to help you rehome your cat on your own.
Prepare Your Pet for a New Home
If you are able to provide the following care, it is important your pet is spayed/neutered, in good health, and up to date on vaccinations. It’s beneficial if they are house-trained and reasonably well-behaved. Then:
Compose a short bio describing the personality, habits, and unique traits that make your pet special. Check out “How to Write Animal Bios to Get Pets into Homes” for tips!
Choose 1 to 3 great photos to feature your pet in advertising. Remember, one blurry photo is like no photo at all! You want people to connect with the image! It has to be crisp, clear, and it should focus on the cat’s face with their eyes open. Take a look at this short, fun video for taking great photos with your cell phone.
Get the Word Out
You know how great your pet is and now you have to share that with others! Advertising your pet is a lot like marketing. You want to help people feel a personal connection with the animal and inspire them to take the next step. Here’s a short list of how to advertise your pet.
Other options include sharing your pet online with your family, friends, and colleagues on free social sites such as:
Flyers are inexpensive and often effective. Use PetBond to easily make them. Utilize community contacts (e.g. churches, book clubs, PTA meetings, etc.) and post flyers at businesses, such as grocery stores, pet stores, coffee shops, vet offices, dentists, doctors, etc.
When people begin to reach out, after they’ve seen your marketing for your pet, they are going to want to meet the pet in person. To pick the right adopter, you’ll want to get to know them, be wary of any red flags (a big one of ours is declawing – not a good thing!) and build that relationship with the possible new family. Check out this link to help with screening questions and to see what makes a good home. It will also help guide you through meet and greets.
You can also read through FieldHaven’s adoption survey for ideas of what to ask to guide the rehoming process. Use your instincts and don’t be afraid to build that relationship with a possible adopter so that you can feel more comfortable and keep in touch with them.
It is up to you if you wish to ask for or accept an adoption fee, and it is also up to you to determine an amount. You can use a fee to help you feel more comfortable with the adoption (though studies reveal that if someone gets a pet for free they do not value the pet any less nor do they care for them any less – that pet is still family and will be treated as such), or to help you offset any medical care you’ve provided. If you are uncomfortable with that, you can recommend they make a donation to FieldHaven Feline Center, to help more cats in need. Donations may be made online here or they can mail a check to 2754 Ironwood Lane, Lincoln, CA 95648.
- Placer SPCA SOS Program, designed to help Placer County residents keep their companion animals through difficult times
- Placer County Animal Services Center
- Yuba Sutter SPCA
- Front Street Animal Shelter
- Sacramento SPCA
Need more help? Check out Petfinder for resources for how to best handle giving up your pet and for finding a home for your pet.
If you are rehoming your pet for a short-term need or because of medical/veterinary bills, or something else that could be assisted with help, consider other options instead of rehoming:
Ask for Help
Ask family and friends if they can assist temporarily or long-term with fostering your pet, contributing to vet bills, and/or networking your pet through their groups. If you need a foster agreement, here is a template you can use for peace of mind.
Utilize boarding or long-term daycare for temporary housing. Several local options include:
Rehoming with Meow & Forever
Meow & Forever is not a “waiting list” for your cat to be surrendered to FieldHaven. It is a program where you have access to our adoption experts who’ve had nearly two decades experience placing kitties in homes. We are clever at marketing and match-making. You have access to all that talent! Additionally, we partner with several other adoption programs where there could be opportunities to transfer your kitty. To assure good health, we require cats in Meow & Forever to be:
- Current on vaccines (FVRCP and Rabies)
It’s important to provide us with good quality photos (and videos if possible). Take a look at this short, fun video for taking great photos with your cell phone.
Here’s how our program works. With Meow and Forever, the goal is to keep cats out of shelters, so they will stay with you until a home is found. We’ll get them on our website and social media and share the link with you, letting you know when it is posted. We provide a brief background, photos and your contact information. We direct all inquiries to you, via phone and email, so be sure to check messages often and answer unknown calls during this time. You will set up meet and greets at your home, talk to possible adopters and decide on the new home. You can, if needed, use the FieldHaven shelter for the meet and greet, as long as it is scheduled with our team in advance.
The goal with all of this is that once the cats are on FieldHaven’s website and social media, people begin to reach out to you, and you determine if they are a good fit. From there, they meet kitty and take them home!
Registering Your Cat
Registering your cat with Meow & Forever is easy. Simply click here or use the button below. Complete the short application and add photos. FieldHaven will email you within a few days to go over everything so that we may officially list your kitty on the FieldHaven website. We will provide support and guidance during the entire rehoming process. What’s next after your kitty is listed with Meow & Forever.