Monday, November 17, 2014

Rehoming your beagle: Dos and Don'ts

Before we start, I just want to get something out of the way.
  1. I am not judging anyone who needs to find a new home for their beagle.
  2. I am not trying to enable people who are looking for an easy way out of pet ownership.
But the reality is every month I get at least one email from someone seeking help with finding a new home for a pet beagle. It's heartbreaking to read. Everyone has a reason for what they do.

If you are rehoming your beagle, here are some things to think about first:
  1. Is the problem a behavioral one? Not housetrained, or barking and going crazy when you leave? Or perhaps the dog is moody, even bitey? Have you contacted a trainer or a behaviorist in your area for help?
  2. Is the problem a medical one? Can you not afford the health costs associated with your dog's condition? Have you looked for a cheaper vet, or alternative care, or a group that can help you locally?
  3. Is the problem a cost one? Can you not afford the cost of owning a pet anymore? Have you looked into food pantries, or thrift stores or discount stores for needed supplies?
There are other questions I could be asking: kid with allergies? Significant other says you have to get rid of the dog? Landlord says you have to get rid of the dog?

These are not areas I am willing to get into because my responses probably will not be helpful and simply upset you in an already upsetting situation.

So if your mind is made up, and you getting rid of your beagle, here are some dos and don'ts.
  • DON'T just drop your beagle off at your county/city pound. Many pounds will kill your pet, and if they are an owner surrender they may not get a waiting period before they're put down. That's not fair to any pet.
    Now in a place like Orlando where there aren't a lot of beagles in the pounds, the chances are good a beagle will be adopted or rescued, but don't take that chance without reason. The pound should always be a last resort, and always done with a bit of research.
  • DO contact any shelters that use euthanasia as a last resort, or are "No-Kill."
  • DON'T just put your beagle up on Craigslist. Lots of people put dogs up for sale or "free to a good home" on Craigslist. Even if you try to do background checks on the person taking your dog, there's no guarantee they aren't just going to flip the dog, or worse -- use it as dog fighting bait or just plain abuse it.
  • DO talk to your vet. Vets can be very helpful in this regard, if only because they know lots of people who might be interested in taking a dog.
  • DO contact your area rescues. Rescue groups have foster networks that might be able to take a beagle in. This won't always work though, especially if you have a pet with an illness that needs help. Also, some rescues may not have enough fosters to care for an owner surrender. Don't just look at breed-specific rescues either. Need to find the rescues in your area? Look at Adopt a Pet or Petfinder.
  • DO get on Facebook. There are lots of Facebook groups out there for dog lovers, especially crosspost groups for pets that need homes. 
  • DO ask your friends. Friends and family may be more willing to help than you are aware. 
  • DON'T just set your pet loose outside. That's a good way to get them killed.
As a rule, I don't personally post re-homing pets on my social media pages. It would open flood gates. But there are lots of people who do. You just have to find them.


  1. This breaks my heart! If I could, I would adopt all the beagles!! <3

    1. Me too! That's the problem. Every time I get an email from someone my heart just drops.

    2. My wife would adopt as many dogs as she could too. My aunt has 2 beagles and they are just great dogs.

  2. I'm a hound person through and through and I'd live out of my mini van or under a bridge before I'd give up my furbabies. I realize there are situations that happen that are beyond the abilities of some people, but I also know from personal experience that many dogs that get "rehomed" can successfully stay in their current home with just a little effort. I had a hound rescue for a while (it closed for lack of support - funds, fosters, volunteers, etc. - I was doing 110% of everything myself and just couldn't do it all). However, in addition to pulling some great dogs from kill shelters, getting them vetted, and finding them loving homes, I was able to help keep three Beagles from three separate families in their homes. In the cases of the three, each was having some serious separation anxiety and the owners felt they couldn't leave the dogs alone for fear of the dog damaging things in the house or hurting themselves. I did what I could do to help and in two of the cases the owners purchased ThunderShirts and they worked magic. The third tried another suggestion I had - they adopted a second dog. In that case they were able to bring their mother's dog to their house for a few days to see if the idea was workable, and it was obvious from the beginning that having a second dog in the home was just what their Beagle needed. SO, not only were they able to keep the Beagle they had, but also saved a second Beagle. I know not all cases work the same way, but I was just so happy to be able to keep these dogs in homes where they were loved, but where certain behaviors were threatening their ability to stay with those families. I only wish every case worked out as well.

    1. That's impressive, Linda! I like to think that if people need help they can find the answers here, but I haven't dealt enough with behavioral issues. I just hope that people see this post and it puts some ideas in their heads other than sending the dog to a shelter.


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