Adopting a dog. Donate here please.
A dog is for life.
Adopt a dog.

Adopting a Dog

Please think carefully before adopting a dog from Animals in Need, as a dog is for life.

A rescue dog will take time to settle in and get to know you and its new family. Some dogs settle within a few days, others can take longer. Many of these dogs have been through so much they need a little time.

There are so many good things about owning a dog: companionship, protection and unconditional love. Dogs are also good for our health, with research indicating that people who own dogs have lower blood pressure and lower levels of stress hormones in their blood, But, owning a dog is also a tremendous responsibility. If you are considering sharing your life with a dog, it is important that you stop and think before you leap into this commitment.

You should never adopt a dog on impulse, even though it is hard to resist those soft brown eyes and wet noses, you are adding a living being to your family, a dog that will rely on you for their every need, every day for the rest of its life. The average life span for a small dog is 12 to 16 years, larger dogs vary from 9 to 12 years + and you will need to meet your dog's every physical, mental and emotional need plus veterinary care when needed for his entire life.

Take some time before adopting a dog to consider what you can comfortably offer a dog that joins your life, and remember that you will need to be able to afford vets bills that may occur in future months or years. Spending a bit of time to figure out what kind of lifestyle commitments you can make will help you decide whether a dog is right for you and will also help you to make a better decision on what type of dog that will fit into your family.

Always do your research, remember some of our dogs from Animals in Need have had a very hard life and at this stage they need you to be sure that you can offer a home for life.

Time Commitment

The first step is deciding whether or not you have the time to care for a dog, how long will you need to leave it due to other commitments?


All dogs need exercise and depending on the breed and age of the dog it can vary to 1 to 2 short walks a day for an elderly dog to one or two long walks a day for a more active dog. Also dog's will need play time with you or family members.


One of the most common reasons for dogs being put to sleep is a "behaviour problem". Most behaviour problems can be prevented by appropriate socialisation and training, and most important, exercise. This takes a heavy investment of time, particularly if you own a puppy.

You could not let your dog raise himself, be proactive and teach him how you'd like him to behave, and he's much less likely to develop behaviour problems that are difficult to resolve. Training also helps you establish leadership with your dog give your dog the mental exercise that they need to thrive.

Plan on training a puppy for at least half an hour each day, once you have established the basics you can reduce the amount of time spent training or move on to more advanced exercises, it will be fun for all.


The beautiful coat on many long hair dogs requires extensive and regular grooming to avoid knotting and to keep clean. As well as frequent visits to the grooming parlor, you will need to establish a daily routine of brushing your dog's coat to keep it shiny and tangle free. In some breeds this could take a full hour every day.

Lifestyle Commitment

Dogs are a full time commitment. Think about whether a dog complements your current lifestyle. Think about what you are willing to compromise and what changes you are willing to make.


Is your home one that can accommodate a dog? You will need to understand your neighbours rules regarding the type of dogs you are permitted to keep.

If you rent, look through your rental agreement, many leases specifically forbid pets and having to keep your dog hidden away is no fun and can be stressful.

If the dog is going to spend time outside, you are also going to want to make sure you have a garden that is securely fenced.


Dogs need some kind of routine. This means you need to think about whether your family's routine is conducive to having a dog.


o you have any family members who may suffer from allergies? If so, what steps are you willing to take to assure that your dog is not the one who suffers!


All dogs need exercise, some more so than others. Think about what kind of activity level makes sense for your family. Many people get a dog hoping that they (the owners) will become more active. While this is a good aspiration, it is generally more advisable to become more active before getting the dog! When considering adopting a dog keep in mind that your lifestyle may change over the years. You may have a family.

Every dog deserves a forever home, so plan ahead for such changes, so you can be sure that you are able to keep your dog no matter what happens.

Cost of Owning a Dog

Rescuing a dog from a shelter is a wonderful thing to do for you, your family and the dog. But, one big misconception is that adopting a rescue dog is cheap. Most rescues charge a fee for adoption. This fee covers only a small percentage of their costs for travel, food, veterinary care, facilities, bedding, rehabilitation, and general care.

Adoption fees also help rescues find new owners that are more responsible and prepared for the commitment of adopting a dog. The dogs that are in animal rescues have been examined to make sure they are in good health before being made available for adoption.

Our dogs where possible are vaccinated, wormed and neutered/spayed and other treatment may have been carried out. In many cases, their temperament has been assessed to the best of our knowledge so that we can make sure they are a good fit for a prospective new owner.

Please note that at any stage in our adoption process, if Animals in Need or one of our volunteers feels that the situation is not right for our dog, you may be turned down.

We have volunteers all across the UK and the Channel Islands who home check for us. If you live in an area that is not covered by one of our home checkers then we will contact your nearest RSPCA to do a home check for us or failing that we will discuss your circumstances and MAY accept letters and references.

Animals in Need Re-homing fee. Our re-homing fee can vary from £0 to £250 depending on the age and health of the dog.

Frequently asked questions

Why would you ask for a donation fee for a rescue dog?
Why not just place it in a good home?

The Answer is because we need adopters who are willing to support all of our rescued dogs not just the one they are going to adopt. A young healthy dog will cost us anything from £60 to £300 in vet care, and many people will want to adopt that dog.

An older or one with health problems can cost hundreds to thousands in veterinary expenses depending on the nature of the dog¹s illness/disability, and it may need months of foster care/rehabilitation.

Donations from the younger, more adaptable dogs help offset the cost of caring for other animals.

Most of our dogs have a sad story to tell, and some have suffered through years of abuse and neglect. We hope that you understand that all of our dogs need to benefit from donations thus enabling them to move forward to a better life.

How it works

First fill in an adoption form and either email, post it to us or call us to discuss what you are exactly looking for in a pet. We will then do a home visit/check to make sure everything is suitable for the type of pet you have chosen and discuss what pet would be suitable.

If your pet is local you will then be invited to come and meet your chosen pet to get to know him/her a little. We would then ask you to go away and take a little time to think about what you are taking on.

If your pet is not local we will discuss your chosen pet with you and tell you everything we know about him/her to the best of our knowledge. We would then ask you to go away and think about what we have told you and decide if it is still what you want.

If you are 100 percent sure you can offer the best possible home for your chosen animal it is only then that you will be able to take him/her home for a long lasting and happy relationship.

Find out more

Please contact Jackie Dalton
Jackie (UK)
07815 685 579
Rescue dog.