Giving Up Your Pet for Adoption

If you believe you must find a new home for your companion animal then you must be prepared to spend time and effort to do right by your friend. You once made a commitment to care for this living, breathing, feeling animal. It is worth every hour you spend to find him or her a decent home. You will sleep better at night.

Roice Hurst Humane Society, Animal Shelter, Adoption Center - Roice Hurst Humane Society Servicing Grand Junction, Mesa County & Western Colorado
Roice Hurst Humane Society, Animal Shelter, Adoption Center - Roice Hurst Humane Society Servicing Grand Junction, Mesa County & Western Colorado

We understand that giving up your pet is a difficult and emotionally trying time and that often you may have no other alternatives.

You can help us find the best new home for your pet by giving us as much information about his or her’s personality and habits as you can.

It is also helpful to know how he gets along with other dogs or cats.

Has he/she been been around children? How does he react?

Does he/she have any bad habits or behavioral issues that we need to address with training or behavioral modification?

The more information you can give us about your pet will help us find just the right home.

Roice-Hurst Guidelines for Surrendering Your Pet

  • Please contact our Dog Behavior Counselor – 970-434-7337 ext. 102 for an appointment to surrender your pet. Pet relinquishment’s are not taken on a walk-in basis. 
  • A relinquishment fee of $100 for dogs and $50 for cats is required in order for us to feed and provide medical care for your pet until it is re-homed.
  • Please fill out the Cat Surrender Form or Dog Surrender Form and be as detailed as possible about your pets, including:

Medical & vaccination records, including Vet’s name and phone # and any information about needed medical attention.
Behavior with other pets and people, including children.
Your pets mannerisms or training received.                

What Should I Bring With My Pet?

  • Medical records
  • Any medications or supplements
  • Any of your pet’s belongings – blankets, beds, toys, etc. 
  • A few servings of their food
  • Any forms not submitted online
  • If adopted from Roice-Hurst Humane Society please bring the original adoption paperwork/folder
Is There Any Way To Keep Him/Her?

Below are many of the reasons that people choose to give up their pet. Many of these do have solutions and we encourage you to do everything possible to accommodate your pet or the stray into your household. If you need advice from us, please call us before you are to the point of total frustration.

Rental problems

Find a situation that allows pets. There are plenty of landlords who do allow pets. Take the time to find them. And if you’re worried about a pet deposit, just think of this: what’s worth more to you, a few fast-food meals or the life of a loyal friend?


Visit your doctor to find out if your allergies can be controlled through medication and/or diet.Talk with your veterinarian about solutions to the allergy problem.

Unruly behavior

In most cases, the problems are quite solvable if you make a little effort. An animal is like a child. Set no boundaries, ignore him, give her nothing to do, teach him nothing…the child will not be well-adjusted and will not learn to behave. It is up to you to teach your animal kindly and consistently what is expected of him or her.

Take obedience classes (contact local adult education centers and recreation centers, ask neighbors). Read a book. Practice frequently, with kindness and consistency. Most animals know how to act, we humans need to be trained in how to interact with our animals.

Consistency is the key. Positive reinforcement works faster than negative reinforcement.

Destructive behavior/house soiling/barking

Does your dog destroy things when you leave? Does your dog pee/poop in the house? Use a crate when you leave the dog alone. Crates have been proven over and over to be effective. A crate is worth every penny. Some people believe them to be cruel, but it is a naturally tendency for your dog to have a small sleeping area, a den. It is kinder than sending your dog away. If your dog is barking excessively, you need obedience instruction. Consider a trip to the vet. A medical problem can result in sudden behavior changes.

Shows aggression

You need obedience training and assistance. Remember: cats and dogs, like children, learn what they are taught. What caused the behavior? Does someone in your home rough-house with the animal? Play tug-of-war? Yell at the animal? Yell at other people or act violent? Does a child poke, tease or torment the animal? Or do you basically ignore the animal unless you’re scolding or punishing him?

Try to think about how your animal learned aggressive behavior, and find out proper techniques for eradicating it. If your pet is playing rough, you must stop the play and walk away. Spend quality time playing with the pet with appropriate toys. Consider a trip to the vet. But remember, this aggression did not appear overnight, so the solution will not fix the problem immediately. You must give your friend time to relearn appropriate behavior. A medical problem can result in sudden behavior changes.

Litterbox accidents

How often do you clean out the box? Is the box in a high traffic area? Have you added additional cats without adding additional boxes? Have you changed brands of litter? All of these might cause litterbox accidents. If there have been no household changes to trigger this behavior, a trip to the vet is in order. Your cat may have feline lower urinary tract disease (cystitis) and needs treatment immediately – do not delay – your cat could die if he or she has this disease and is not treated.

You Have Decided You Cannot Keep Him/Her

Do not expect someone else to take responsibility for finding a solution–you have to do it. Live up to the role of concerned caregiver. Do the right thing by the animal. If that means finding him/her a new home, do so carefully.

Contact the group/person from whom you obtained pet. If you signed an adoption contract, you may be bound to return the animal to that group/person. If your animal is a purebred, check telephone book or contact local animal control agency for phone numbers of breed rescue groups in your area.

Your Decision

Before you make your decision — and it is your decision; your animal has no say — think one last time what you can do to maintain your friend, companion animal in your home.