Useful Information

adopting a dog in ireland

The adoption process is different for pounds and rescues. 


Adopting from the pound

To adopt a dog from a pound you need to purchase a dog licence, pay a fee if applicable - generally 20 to 60 euro, and bring some ID. The dog will often be rehomed in the same condition as it entered the pound. The majority of pounds do not vaccinate, spay/neuter. As required by law all dogs should now be micro chipped before leaving the pound. 

Adopting from a rescue

The rescue process is much different. Each dog that is taken into a rescue will be vaccinated and micro chipped. They will be spayed/neutered if in good health and they are old enough. They will also be treated for worms and fleas. The dog can be assessed with other dogs, cats and children to see what potential homes would be suitable for it.

To adopt a dog from a rescue you will be required to complete an adoption questionnaire. On this you will give information about yourself, your household and what type of dog you are interested in adopting. Here you can detail energy level or size of dog that would suit you and your lifestyle.

After the adoption questionnaire has been completed the animal rescue will arrange for a volunteer to complete a home check. This is done to insure that what you have said on the questionnaire is correct. For example, there have been cases were a rescue has stated a dog cannot be rehomed to a house with children as it is not used to them. The potential adopter stated on the questionnaire that they had no children. When the volunteer arrived for the home check the potential adopter actually had three children under the age of 8. This wastes the time of the potential adopter and the volunteer but shows exactly why the home check is required.

A problem that some people have with adopting from rescues is the cost. You will often hear ‘If I am adopting why do I need to pay? Am I not helping you by taking the dog?’

Your donation covers kenneling, food, vet bills, spay/neuter, micro chipping and vaccination of your dog. Rescues are a non-profit organisation and are always in real need of extra funds. Chances are the required donation will not even cover the costs paid by the rescue for the care of the dog during its time there. The more you give ensures that they can pay the cost of the next dog they will take in too. 

Adopting from a private individual

There are many situations where an owner will have to rehome their pet through no fault of the animal. We would recommend that the owner would vet the potential owner in the same way that an animal rescue does to ensure the animal is going to the right home. You should not take a dog unless it has been spayed/neutered and micro chipped and that you have proof of this. You can also ask to meet the dog in its current home and be OK with allowing the owner to also visit your own home for a home check. Both sides should be happy with the rehoming before the dog is taken to its new home. We have sample documents you can use for an adoption contract that you should both agree on. 

We don't recommend buying a dog, and no animals are permitted for sale in our adopt section. But we also don't recommend that any animals are given 'free to a good home'. We suggest a charity donation be made to your local rescue instead.