Rocky the lurcher at Burford rehoming centre

What if I need to give up my pet?

Where do I start?

The first thing to do is contact your nearest Blue Cross centre. One of our team will ask you some questions and let you know if we are able to help.

We’ve temporarily limited the number of pets we can bring into our rehoming centres across the UK. As always, we will prioritise urgent crisis cases and will continue to support owners of pets we have already committed to taking in.

Home Direct: We prefer to use our Home Direct scheme, where we rehome pets directly from one family to another. This is less stressful for pets and it also frees up the limited spaces at our centres for homeless animals who have nowhere else to go. This is a good option if you are able to keep your pet temporarily until we can find them a new home.

Coming to a Blue Cross centre: If you can’t keep your pet any longer, we may be able to give them a space at one of our centres. Please be aware that demand is extremely high and there may be a waiting list.

Sometimes we’re unable to help but we’ll give you advice on what you can do next.

Knowing where to turn

We know that sometimes people’s circumstances change and they can no longer look after their pet. At Blue Cross we never judge anyone for making the responsible decision to give up their animal and we’ll do what we can to help.

No matter how desperate you’re feeling, please don’t dump or abandon your pet, even outside a Blue Cross centre. This is incredibly traumatic for them and also very dangerous – they could become seriously ill or they could escape and be hit by a car. It also means that even if they are found and brought to us, we won’t know their history, which makes it a lot harder to find them the right home.

What happens to my pet once they’re in the care of Blue Cross?

They will be carefully assessed by a vet and a member of the Blue Cross team so we can give them any special care they need and match them to the right kind of home.

After the assessment period they will go up for rehoming, providing there aren’t any veterinary or behaviour issues that we need to address. Their profile will appear on the Blue Cross website and we will start our search to find them a loving home.

What if I can’t keep my Blue Cross pet?

We never forget a Blue Cross pet and we’ll always prioritise them and make room for them as soon as we can.

Please contact your nearest Blue Cross centre and we’ll make space for them as soon as possible, or we may ask if we can use our Home Direct Scheme to find them a new family.

What if you need to give up your horse?

If you find yourself needing to give up your horse please email [email protected] 

Unfortunately we are unable to guarantee that we’ll be able to take your horse into one of our rehoming centres as priority is always given to welfare cases and abandoned horses, however we do have a scheme whereby we find new homes for horses while they remain in your care.

If you need advice regarding an abandoned horse please follow the information on our abandoned and fly grazing horses page. 

If you need advice about or to return a Blue Cross horse/pony you have rehomed, then please contact your Horse Welfare Coordinator.

I’m worried my pet will outlive me

Many people worry about what will happen if their pets outlive them. If you feel there’s no one you can ask to take on your companion, our Pet Peace of Mind might be for you.