Pets are family members. That’s why the Connecticut Humane Society strives to help pets stay in the homes they know and love. If you’re facing challenges in keeping your critter, consider these ideas.

Things to Consider Before Surrendering Your Pet

Has your schedule changed?
Maybe your family, friends, a local pet care business, or neighbors can help.

Do you think your pet is sick?
Consult your veterinarian about how to manage medical issues or call the Fox Memorial Clinic for an appointment.

Do you have to move?
There are local pet-friendly housing options available – perhaps one might be a fit for you and your family.

Is your landlord asking you to rehome your pet?
Make a pet resume that shows you are a responsible pet owner and consider consulting with an attorney.

Does your pet have a behavior problem?
Always make sure to have your pet examined by a veterinarian to rule out a medical problem underlying the behavior issue. Research training options to help your pet succeed – consider local trainers in your area or check out a class at CHS.

Is your pet elderly or suffering from medical or behavior problems?
If none of the options above are a possibility and you must rehome your pet, consider foster-based (home-based) rescues. They are a better fit than a traditional shelter environment for special needs pets. You can find a comprehensive listing of rescues at Petfinder.com

Are finances an issue?
These options may help you keep your pet at home:

If rehoming your pet remains your only option and you’d like to surrender your pet to CHS, please follow the steps below.

Rehoming Your Pet through the Connecticut Humane Society

CHS is a managed admission organization and reserves the right to accept or refuse any pet presented for surrender. CHS does not place any time limits on a pet’s stay. The number and types of pets accepted will vary based on what cases are already in the shelter.

      • Call CHS at 800-452-0114 to discuss surrendering your pet. The staff will review your options, including ideas that you may not have considered. If surrender seems the best option, an evaluation appointment will be scheduled.
      • You must accompany your pet to your evaluation appointment. If you are not the legal owner, then you must provide written documentation from the owner which gives you permission to present their pet for evaluation and potential surrender to CHS.
      • Complete a written Pet Personality Profile and allow CHS staff to conduct a temperament assessment. This information will help CHS determine its ability to accept your pet into the adoption program. For your convenience, download the Dog, Cat, Ferret, Rabbit, Guinea pig or Bird Profile in advance, fill it out and bring the completed form to your appointment. Please be as thorough as possible as this document helps CHS find your pet a good match in their next home.
      • Provide a surrender fee to help defray the costs of caring for your pet while s/he awaits a new home. Our standard request is $80 per pet.
      • Legally sign your pet over to CHS.

Intake FAQs

Why do you charge an intake fee?

CHS asks for an intake fee to help defray the costs of caring for the pets while they await new homes. It costs an average of $924.87 to care for each pet. This includes the cost of daily care, vaccinations, spay/neuter and any other care a pet may need, including extensive medical treatment or behavioral rehabilitation. CHS is a private, nonprofit organization and receives no federal, state or municipal funding. The support of the community makes this work possible.

Will you accept my pet if I cannot afford the fee?

Yes, CHS will not refuse to help due to financial burden. Please consider providing a smaller donation or a future gift.

Will you accept pets with a bite history?

Each case is handled individually. CHS must consider the safety of the general public in all adoption placements. Pets with a bite history, pets who exhibit highly aggressive or unsociable tendencies during the temperament assessment, or pets who have been trained as attack/guard animals may not be accepted into the adoption program. Our team will ask questions during the evaluation process to determine if CHS is the right place for your pet.

Will you accept strays?

Per state law, stray dogs must be brought to your local animal control department. Stray cats or small animals should also be reported to animal control in the event that their owner has filed a lost pet report. If animal control is not able to assist with a stray (other than a dog), you may contact CHS about scheduling an evaluation appointment.

Do you accept elderly pets or pets with health and/or behavior problems?

Each surrender request is handled individually. Age, health and behavior are not always immediate disqualifiers, but our team will need to ask clarifying questions to determine if CHS is the right place for your pet’s particular needs. Senior pets, pets with limited social experience, pets with complicated behavior problems, and pets who are ill or injured with limited chances for rehabilitation often struggle in a shelter environment despite the best of care. The transition from a home to a shelter can cause stress for a pet. Seniors and those with behavior or medical complications tend to deal with this stress less well than others. Please research all your options thoroughly before contacting CHS to inquire about surrendering a senior, sick or behaviorally challenged pet.

Do you offer euthanasia and cremation services for pet owners?

Yes. Please visit the owner-requested euthanasia page for information.

What if I change my mind and want my pet back?

CHS has a large team that works quickly, so animals are often made available for adoption, and adopted, soon after they arrive. If you have changed your mind and want your pet back, please contact the CHS location where you surrendered your pet to discuss what options may be available. Please note that if your pet needed spay/neuter or extensive medical care, you may be asked to pay for these services in order to reclaim your pet.