Your rights when adopting out

When it comes to adopting out an animal, it’s important to feel both safe and in control. Although your legal rights may vary depending on your province of residence, here are some of the consistencies that will help you make the best decision not only for yourself, but for the people you’re adopting to as well.

The Animal’s Safety

  • You have the right to refuse adoption to a person you have ever met or don’t feel comfortable with. If you have an uneasy feeling about someone wanting to adopt from you, consider whether that person is the right person for this particular animal.
  • You have the right to refuse adoption to a person who has intentionally hurt or killed another pet. It is your duty to do your best in ensuring that the animal is going to a safe and stable home.
  • You have the right not to be made to feel guilty because the animal has been sheltered long-term. This is a tough one, as some of you might want to push the adopting of animals that have been under your care for longer than you had anticipated.
  • You have the right not to be pressured to adopt out an incompatible pet, even if the alternative is euthanasia. Remember, the safety and well-being of an animal must come before convenience.

Your Safety

  • You have the right to be treated with respect, courtesy, and professionalism.
  • You have the right to meet any potential adopters in a place where you feel safe.
  • You do not have to provide a potential adopter with your own personal information, such as your phone number of address if you don’t feel comfortable doing so. If you feel safer doing so, setup a new email account just for contacting potential adopters.

The best way to decrease animal cruelty is through prevention.


The key to protecting both yourself and the animal during the process of finding the perfect match for your pet is to a) make sure you’ve found the right person for the animal and b) don’t do anything you don’t feel comfortable doing. Waiting for the right person can be stressful, but it’s important to do your best to ensure that the animal is going to a safe home. Don’t feel pressured into making a quick decision, or to share any personal information with a potential adopter.

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