ADOPTING A ROMANIAN RESCUE DOG
The Process, What's Involved, What to Look Out For.
I have written this article to help anyone wishing to know more about how to go about adopting a Romanian Rescue dog, what's involved, how the process works, what to look out for to make sure your new dog is as suitable as possible for you & your family & how to ensure you're adopting from a reputable rescuer.
So you have decided to adopt a Romanian Rescue Dog or perhaps you have seen a picture of a Romanian dog on Facebook or a website that you'd like to adopt, but you're really not sure what's involved, if it's safe, legitimate or even how to go about it.
DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE & BACKGROUND CHECKS
First things first, there are many extremely hard working, legitimate, trustworthy and reputable rescuers tirelessly spending their days trying to save 100s of dogs from the circumstances they face on the streets and in the Public Kill Shelters in Romania, but sadly, as with most things, there are also 'scammers' so the first thing you need to do is check out the rescuer who is re-homing the dog you are interested in, or from whom you would like to adopt. (If you would like to read more about why there is such a huge problem in Romania, please click here to read our article)
Things to check for:
- Make sure they provide rescue back up and offer full support for the life of the dog
- Make sure they follow DEFRA regulations with regard to vaccinations, flea, tick & worm treatments, passports, micro-chipping and neutering
- Don't be afraid to ask for references or to speak to some other people who have rescued from them if you're not sure
- Make sure they use a reputable, registered transport company
COMPLETE YOUR PRE-ADOPTION FORM
So you've checked out your rescuer, and they are great! If you have seen a dog that you would like to apply to adopt, then now is the time to get in contact with the rescuer and request your application form. If you don't know which dog you would like, then send them a message with a few details of what you are looking for and they will be able to tell you if they have any dogs available that would suit you and your lifestyle.
Please bear in mind, many of these dogs are in public shelters in Romania and there is little or no information provided about where they came from or why they are there. It can be difficult to assess if a dog is good with children or cats when they are in the shelter, but sometimes rescuers are able to take the dogs out of the public shelter and place them in private kennels, in order to keep them safe from being killed, and be able to assess them better for re-homing.
So once you have chosen your dog, or are ready to adopt, your rescuer will send you a pre-adoption form to gain information about you, your lifestyle, if you work and how long for, how long the dog will be left, your experience etc etc. Some of the rescuers will request a deposit payment at this point if you wish to reserve a particular dog, this is to safeguard them against people making half hearted enquiries who are not really committed to following through with the rescue. Obviously they go to a lot of time and trouble checking pre adoption forms and arranging home checks, so they want to be sure applications are serious. Your deposit payment will be deducted from your adoption fee, so it is not an additional expense.
HAVE YOUR HOME-CHECK DONE
Once your rescuer receives your completed pre-adoption form back they will arrange for a home check to be done at your house. This involves a visit from a local volunteer who will ask you some questions, complete a form from the rescuer and assess your suitability for the dog you have chosen, taking into consideration things like the ages of any children within the household, other resident dogs or pets and all things like that.
They will also check the fencing at your property to make sure your garden is secure. If you do not have a garden, in some cases it is still possible to adopt but it would have to be under the right circumstances and for the right type of dog.
Once your home check is complete, your home-checker will return her completed form to the rescuer and the rescuer will then make the decision if the dog you have chosen is right for you and will contact you to let you know that your application to adopt has been successful!
In some cases a rescuer may decide the dog you have chosen to adopt is not suitable for you following your home check, but this could be for any number of reasons and is often no reflection on you personally, but is relative to the dog you have chosen to adopt. Your rescuer will usually tell you why and if she has another suitable dog waiting for its forever home, may suggest that dog for you to consider instead, if she feels it would be a better match for you & your circumstances.
ADOPTION FEE & TRANSPORT ARRANGEMENTS
Once you have been notified that your home-check was successful, your rescuer will begin preparing your dog to be transported to your location. They will agree a transport date with you, and it will be at this time you will be asked to pay your adoption fee (less any deposit already paid).
Adoption fees vary between each individual rescue, but as a guideline, adoption fees are usually in the region of £250 - £300 and this covers vaccinations, flea, worm & tick treatments, micro-chipping and neutering (if old enough - if you are adopting a puppy, neutering will be your responsibility & a condition of your contract) plus a full EU passport and the transportation of your dog to your location. All of this is in accordance with DEFRA regulations. All the dogs are transported via specially equipped vehicles with carers on board for the entire journey.
Depending on where or what country you live in the transport arrangements may differ slightly. If you are unsure of anything, double check with your rescuer.
From a time frame point of view, for example, a dog being adopted to the UK might depart from Romania on a Tuesday, travel across Europe and arrive in the UK at a Trace Registered kennel or UK foster home on the Thursday. According to DEFRA Regulations, the dogs must then spend 2 nights at the Trace kennels in order for both them and their paperwork to be checked and approved.
If you are having your dog delivered directly to your home, you must keep them inside for at least 48 hours and a member of DEFRA may contact you to carry out random checks. They aren't ready for walks for at least a week anyway)
If your dog was delivered to a Trace kennels, you should be able to collect them after the 48 hours, or arrange for them to be transported to a location nearer to you.
COLLECTING YOUR NEW ROMANIAN RESCUE DOG
Collection day has arrived! If you are close enough to the kennels, you can collect direct from there, but if not, for a small additional fee, your dog can often be transported, again in the specially equipped vans. These arrangements are all made and paid for when you agree the transport date with your rescuer, before your dog leaves Romania.
Wherever you collect your dog from, it is very important to make sure you have a secure area in your car for the dog to travel, preferably a crate. Also that you have a slip lead for your dog to wear, to prevent him/her running off or escaping during drop off and collection. Remember your dog will be somewhat confused after all they have been through in that week, most likely a bit scared and a slip lead is the best option for preventing a dog bolting during handover.
Once you get your new dog home, it is important to let them have some time and space to settle and not to fuss over them too much. A reputable rescuer will provide support to all new adopters and encourage you to get in touch if you experience any problems or just need to ask some advice.
THIS ARTICLE is a MUST READ for all new Romanian Rescue adopters. It includes a FREE PDF download and covers the most important points to be aware of and remember for those first early days and weeks when you bring your Rescue dog home. Getting it right from the beginning can make a huge difference to not only how quickly your new addition will settle in his new home, but also in the prevention of any problems arising that could cause difficulties for you and your new family member in the future.
A FINAL WORD & RESOURCE LINKS
That's about it! The process from start to finish of Adopting a Rommie Rescue. I think I have covered everything, but if you still have any questions please feel free to join The Dog's Point of View Private Facebook Group.
There is also another great page on Facebook called The Good Guide to Romanian Dog Rescue which has been set up to provide invaluable information on shelters and rescuers, who are trustworthy, reputable and provides rescue back up. Well worth a look, they can also help you if you have any questions about a specific rescuer.
They have also created THIS GUIDE which provides and easy reference list of Romanian rescue organisations (marked in green) and individual rescuers that have been validated and provide a good level of care for their dogs and rescue back up for their adopters. There is also a list of shelters on this guide (marked in red) but dogs should be adopted via a Romanian Rescue organisation or Rescuer, not directly from the shelter.
Please feel free to share this article (via the links below) with your friends if it would be of use or interest to them 🙂