Alternative to rehoming your dog
Dog looking a little bit sad

Alternative to rehoming your dog

6 September 2022


Why do people rehome their dogs?

Thinking of rehoming your dog?

How can I rehome my dog?

When should I rehome my dog?

Why do people rehome their dogs?

Rehoming a dog can be one of the toughest decisions a dog owner can make. There are so many different reasons why people do it, and sometimes it is the best option for the owner and the dog. But in some cases there may be ways to get support without needing to rehome your companion.


Having a pet can be expensive, and sometimes the cost feels like something you can no longer afford. But there are charities like the PDSA and the RSPCA that can support with vet care bills if you are eligible for their help, while pet insurance can be another important way to help manage unexpected bills. There are pet food banks available too which can support with feeding your dog.  While for dog care costs, BorrowMyDoggy can help to connect you with local people who offer their support, who do it because they love dogs, not because they want to be paid.


Behaviour issues are a very common reason why people rehome their dogs, and sometimes support from your vet and a qualified clinical animal behaviourist (see www.abtc.org.uk/) can help to improve your pooch’s issues and let them stay with you. If you can, try and speak to a pet professional as soon as possible, before the problem gets really serious. If your dog’s behaviour is becoming a safety issue to yourself or your family though, you should contact your vet immediately.

Dexter, the Cocker Spaniel

Thinking of rehoming your dog?

Having a dog is a big responsibility and as a result some dog owners find themselves thinking about making the decision to rehome their dog. Sometimes that is the correct decision and what is best for the dog, but some people are just looking for help to get through a ruff patch, or someone to help them out with a bit of walking or the odd overnight.  And this is where BorrowMyDoggy can help.

BorrowMyDoggy connects dog owners with trusted local people who would love to look after their dog. We make it easy to arrange walks, playtime, overnight stays or holidays. Our aim is to help dog owners when they need it, give dogs more exercise and playtime and to allow people without a dog to spend quality time with one. When a change in circumstances means considering rehoming your dog, joining BorrowMyDoggy can help dogs stay in their homes by connecting dog owners with local carers who want to help because they love dogs, not because they’re being paid.

We have members who have benefited from the support the BorrowMyDoggy community can provide, like Saffron’s owner, Sandra from Perthshire:

I have some serious mobility problems and cannot give my dog the walks she needs for a fit and healthy life, and I did not want to rehome my friend. I have met some super friendly people, they have become friends and without them I do not know how I would be able to keep my fur friend.


And Nelson’s owner Joanna, from Yorkshire:

I thought I had no choice but to rehome my dog, Nelson, which would have broken my heart. I joined BorrowMyDoggy and it really has been the answer to all of our prayers! A bad health relapse on my end had put a stop to my walks with Nelson. I was so worried about his physical health with the lack of exercise, but as a young, sociable dog, he was obviously missing his walks and meeting dog friends, so it was very difficult knowing he was unhappy. His borrowers, Breffni and Rob, have been faithful walkers every weekend and he waits for them by the front door with his nose peeking through the letterbox in anticipation, then he is so overjoyed to see them he cannot sit still! They were even able to care for him when I had to suddenly go into hospital, which prevented him from going to the RSPCA.


Benji’s owner, Caroline from Brighton, also shared their story:

I joined BorrowMyDoggy initially for mental health reasons, needing to walk Benji twice a day was just too much. I even thought that I would have to give Benji up, which would have broken my heart and been terrible for him. Then someone told me about BorrowMyDoggy and I found the most consistent, reliable, caring person. She walked him twice a day and loved him to pieces and vice versa. Thanks so much to her because I still have Benji and love him to the moon and back. I think BorrowMyDoggy is a fantastic service, it gives Benji all his social and exercise needs, while having a lovely caring home.

Sometimes rehoming your pooch is the right answer, but in other cases, BorrowMyDoggy might be an option so you can keep your beloved dog. As Battersea Dogs and Cats Home shared,

We all have busy lives but BorrowMyDoggy means that people won’t have to give up on their pets.

How can I rehome my dog?

Friends & family

If you have decided that rehoming is the best option for yourself and your dog, then it’s important to make sure you do it properly and find your pooch a loving forever home. Some people rehome to friends or family, we even have times when owners rehome their dog with the borrower, so if there is someone who has the time, space and lifestyle to take care of your dog full time, that you already know and trust then they can be a great option for rehoming your dog.


When looking for a new owner for your dog, you should also contact their original breeder if you bought them as a pup. If they have time and space, some breeders are able to take your pooch back again, or they might know someone else that they trust that can help.


If you don’t have these options then there are wonderful charities all over the UK who may be able to take on your dog and find them a new owner, from large well-known organisations like the BlueCross, RSPCA and SSPCA or Battersea Dog and Cats Home to smaller, more local organisations.

When should I rehome my dog?

There are many reasons why people feel the need to rehome their dog, including if there has been an owner relationship breakdown, poor health, allergies or behavioural issues with your pooch. You should rehome your dog if you believe there are no other options and it is in your dog’s best interest to be rehomed with someone else. If you are concerned about you or your family’s safety around your dog, contact your vet immediately.

It’s super important when you do rehome though that you are really honest to the new owners or charity if your dog has any issues. You want to be sure that the next home your dog finds is their forever home, and by being completely transparent this makes sure the next owner is aware and ready to manage them. So if you are rehoming your dog because they don’t get on with your small children, be honest, and your pooch might be able to find a family with older kids or without a family, that would suit them better.

Rehoming your dog can be a very upsetting and challenging decision to make. In some situations there can be options that can help so your pup can stay with you, but if not be sure to find someone who can give your dog their forever home.

If you are struggling with the thought of giving up your dog or have given up your dog and are feeling very low about it, reach out to a professional who can help you cope psychologically during this difficult time.

Useful rehoming advice

Local dog rescue centres

Alternative to rehoming your dog

Rescue dog tips

The cost of dog ownership

How to socialise your rescue dog

Could a mixed breed or rescue dog be for you?


Tips for choosing a dog

Hey there!

Want to hear about a different kind of dog care that both you and your dog will love?

Or perhaps you’re a dog lover who can’t have one of your own right now?

We have the pawfect solution, BorrowMyDoggy!

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Dog speaking