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Animals

Has The Pandemic Triggered A Pet Rehoming Crisis?

Has The Pandemic Triggered A Pet Rehoming Crisis?

Has The Pandemic Triggered A Pet Rehoming Crisis? 

Undoubtedly, COVID-19 has caused many financial issues for families across the UK. Those who already had pets before the virus struck may now find it impossible to afford and care for their four-legged friends. On the flip side, we saw a huge increase in families adopting pets under lockdown, perhaps driven by the factor of being stuck at home with nothing else to doNow lockdown is easing, some of these buyers are slowly realising that they maybe aren’t prepared or willing to take on the long-term commitment of a pet. These two reasons are the main driving forces behind the pet rehoming crisis, and why thousands of animals have been put up for adoption during lockdown. 


How to support your local shelter 

Adoption and rescue centres have become overwhelmed with the influx of pets needing a new caring and loving home. Not to mention the fact that due to the economic effects of lockdown, many centres were forced to close down leaving those that have survived with stretched resources and limited opportunities to rehome our furry friends. 

There are many ways in which you can help out, and this starts with speaking to your local shelterSee if there is anything they need such as blankets, food, towels, toys, or even monetary donations. If you find yourself with additional time on your hands, why not ask if they need volunteers? Many everyday skills can be applied to caring for the welfare of animals so why not get involved! Click here to find your local RSPCA rescue centre. 

pet rehoming crisis uk


If you are wanting to buy 

Dogs Trust urge prospective buyers to remember that a dog is for life not just for lockdown, and it should never be bought as a source of short-term entertainment. To see if you and your family are ready to take on some of the basics of dog ownership, take the quiz here. If you want to help out without bringing a little pup into your family, consider donating to their pandemic appeal here. 

Whatever the case, always consider the long-term commitments of a pet before welcoming one into your family. Head to your local rescue and adoption shelters first before looking to purchase an animal on selling platforms. With the growing number of pets that need a new home comes a growing concern regarding pet scams. Please read PAAG’s latest position statement on deposits below: 

 PAAG statement on deposits

You can also check out PAAG’s advice on buying a pet here.  To help you spot the warning signs of deceitful sellers, please read a scammed buyer’s story here. If you are looking to give a rescue dog a happy home, please read our top tips and advice here. 


If you are wanting to sell 

We understand that the financial hardships that come hand in hand with the pandemic force many families to give up their pets. Circumstances can change through no fault of our own meaning we can no longer cope economically with caring for our beloved petsEven with a rise in adoptions during lockdown, there has been an even sharper increase in people choosing to rehome when normal commitments and everyday obligations resume.  

Should you find yourself in this position, please rehome responsibly. If you’re considering advertising an animal, you need to feel confident that the people responding will give it all the love, care, and attention it needs. Click here to learn the most responsible way to sell your pet. Do not abandon or neglect your animal. There is so much advice and information to ensure you find another loving and forever home. 

pet rehoming crisis


If you are hesitant to give up your pet but are also worried that they may struggle once you return to work, click here to learn what to expect. Separation anxiety for dogs, in particular, is a major issue that all dog owners should read up on.  

After reading about the pet rehoming crisis, why not check out our latest animal blogs:

5 Budget-Friendly And Low Maintenance Small Pets 

What To Do When Moving Abroad With Your Pet

A Scammed Buyer’s Story: 12 Warning Signs



Zoe Allison

Zoe Allison

Writer and expert