Rehoming Your Dog or Puppy (Surrender)

Are You Considering Surrendering Your Dog ?

We realise this can be a very difficult and emotional time so we’ve noted a few important points below to assist you in making your decision.

Owners of dogs/puppies may need to consider surrendering for a number of reasons;

  • Owner circumstances change unexpectedly.
  • Owner cannot take their dog/puppy in to an aged care, rental home or shelter.
  • Owner may need to move interstate and cannot take their pet.
  • Dog/puppy does not respond well to new/changed home environment.

We ask you to consider the following options before making an appointment to see us;

  • Seek support from a dog behaviour trainer to assist in modifying your dog’s behaviour if required.
  • Can your dog/puppy be rehomed to a responsible friend or family member, especially if you require help during a transition period and can have your dog/puppy back at a later date?
  • Can your fences be fixed or an interim solution found to secure your dog/puppy on your property?
  • Do you need to take your dog to your local vet for medical treatment as conditions such as chronic ear or skin infections can alter the behaviour of your dog and cause unnecessary pain and discomfort?
  • Do you need to consider taking your dog to your local vet to have your dog humanely euthanised if your dog is suffering from an incurable medication condition or where your dog cannot be rehomed due to very aggressive behaviour for example.

Making an Appointment
When considering surrendering your dog/puppy to the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania you will need to call the relevant Dogs’ Home to make an appointment. Our friendly and helpful staff will help you find solutions to enable you to keep your dog/puppy if at all possible. Should you decide to proceed with the surrender process, the process will be explained to you clearly so you can make a considered decision. The legal owner of the dog/puppy will need to attend the appointment as well as the dog/puppy. Our staff will not judge you, we are here to help and our primary focus is the welfare of your dog/puppy.

Calling ahead is also necessary to ensure we have available space to accept your dog.

If you arrive at the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania without an appointment, we will make every effort to see you at that time; however, due to staff resources, we may need to ask you to make an appointment on the next available day.

Hobart Dogs’ Home: Ph: (03) 6243 5177 (option 1)

Burnie Dogs’ Home: Ph: (03) 6431 6199

Devonport Dogs’ Home: (03) 6427 2178

Launceston Dogs’ Home: Ph: (03) 6349 1999

At your Appointment:
You will need up to half an hour to complete the necessary paperwork.

On arrival to the Home we will escort your dog to one of our kennels straight away so that you can focus on what’s required to help your dog in his/her future journey. Because of this, please spend time with your dog and say your goodbyes before coming in. You will be asked to complete a questionnaire which covers all aspects of your dog’s character, interests, medical history and behaviour. We need you to be completely honest in this questionnaire so we can find the best home possible for your dog based on his/her needs. If you would like to complete this questionnaire in the privacy of your home and to give your responses due consideration, please click on this ‘About Your Dog’ form link to download the form and bring the completed form in with you on the day of your appointment.

Cooling Off Period:
You are given a 24 hour cooling off period after surrendering your dog to the Dogs’ Home. You are welcome to come back to get your dog within 24 hours if you change your mind.

What Will Happen To Your Dog after the Cooling Off Period?
After the 24 hour cooling off period, your dog becomes the legal property of the Dogs’ Homes of Tasmania. At this time, we can no longer talk to you about how your dog is doing as he/she no longer belongs to you. We appreciate this can be very difficult but it is in the best interest of you, your dog and any future owners that contact does not continue.

Within days of the cooling off period, our adoption suitability assessment commences, which includes a health check by our Veterinary team and a comprehensive behaviour assessment. Any health issues will be treated immediately and if a dog requires ongoing treatment or surgery, he/she may go in to foster care to assist with recovery. The behaviour assessment covers sociability, resource guarding, fence jumping, play and kennel presentation as well as consideration of known history with people and other animals. The majority of dogs pass our assessment process, however, there is a small percentage of dogs that are unsafe to be rehomed due to aggression towards people and/or animals and/or have a health condition that is too progressed to treat or prognosis is considered very poor. These dogs are euthanased as soon as possible to minimise any stress experienced in the kennel environment. We are a ‘Get to Zero‘ shelter, which means we go to great lengths and cost to ensure every dog gets the best chance possible. Unfortunately, some dogs come to us too late. In all cases, we treat every dog with love and respect whilst they are in our care.

Surrender Fees
Fees  vary depending on the health and presentation (behaviour) of the dog/puppy. Evidence of vaccinations and sterilisation are required at the time of surrendering your dog/puppy (certificates from your veterinary clinic). Fees are higher for unvaccinated dogs and puppies or where evidence cannot be provided.

Vaccinated dog:  $55  (proof of vaccinations required)
Unvaccinated dog:  $85
Puppy (under 6 months of age):  $30
Litter of puppies: $12 each puppy   (ask us about the ‘Last Litter Fund’ option)


Our Policy is to accept all dogs with two exceptions:

  1. If your dog is very aggressive upon arrival we may decline due to the risk to the safety of our staff and volunteers.
  2. We are not a euthanasia centre and appreciate people not approaching us for this purpose. If this is the kindest option for your dog based on veterinary or behaviour expert advice, please show your dog the love and respect he/she deserves by being there in his/her final moments.



Nestle Purina Petcare are proud sponsors of the Animal Welfare League Australia, providing food and pet care support for dogs and cats in their care.

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