Strays and Rescues

This page is for people who are trying to rehome a stray or rescued pit bull. If you are trying to rehome a dog that you own, please see our Owner Surrender page.

I Found A Dog

Before you try to find a new home for a lost dog, please make every possible effort to find the dog’s original family. Someone out there might be looking for their beloved family member.

Legal requirements

In many places, there is a “holding period” during which you cannot legally rehome a stray dog–you are required to try and find the dog’s home during this time. Only after the holding period has expired, with no ownership claims on the stray, can you start the rehoming process. Check with your local animal control to find out what you are legally required to do before you can rehome a stray dog.

“Think Lost, Not Stray”

Accidents happen, and dogs get loose sometimes. A lost dog that is skinny, dirty, or injured may have become that way during the time that it was running loose. Lost dogs are often frightened or skittish. It doesn’t mean that the dog was abused or neglected.

Follow these important steps to try to reunite a lost dog with its family

  • Check for tags. A dog with a collar and tags is the easiest dog to return to its family. An ID tag, a rabies tag, and a microchip tag all carry phone numbers that you can call to report finding a dog. The issuers of these tags should have contact information for the person who owns the dog.
  • Check for a microchip. Take the dog to your local animal control office or veterinarian and ask them to scan for a microchip. Microchips can provide an owner’s contact information.
  • Contact animal control. Owners are most likely to head to the nearest animal shelter when they lose their pet. Some animal control departments, including Town Lake, will post Found Dog notices online and in their offices. This keeps the dog out of the shelter but still gives owners a way to look for their dog.
  • Post notices in the area where the dog was found.
  • Post notices online and in local media. Craigslist, Petfinder, and your local newspaper are just a few places where you can post lost dog notices.
  • Watch for Lost Dog notices online and in the area where the dog was found.

More great tips for helping a lost dog get home can be found here: Missing Pet Partnership

I Rescued a Dog

If you have done everything you can to try and reunite a lost dog with its family, or if you have rescued an unwanted dog from a bad situation, the following information is for you.

Love-A-Bull has limited resources, so we cannot accept your dog. But we are eager to try to help you re-home a homeless dog, and can assist with advice, promotion, and resources for fosters.

If you are truly interested in finding a safe placement for the dog, please do everything you can to make the dog suitable for adoption, to increase his or her chances as much as possible to find a good home.

Spay or Neuter

If the dog is not already neutered or spayed, it’s a great idea to do so, so that the dog is less desirable to a breeder or dogfighter. Emancipet has low-cost options, and Love-A-Bull has additional spay/neuter resources here. If you are willing to foster, Love-A-Bull may also be able to help you with expenses (food, medical). If you become part of our foster program (you can submit the form here) we may be able to provide additional support.

Spread the Word

After your rescue has been spayed or neutered, get the word out about his or her availability. Take cute photos and write up a description that plays up the dog’s attributes and make him or her sound like the perfect addition to anyone’s home. Read more about writing a winning pet bio here: Adoption Ads That Really Work.

Post the adoption ad on websites, message boards, or on Craigslist. You can also send a profile to area rescue groups to put on their referral pages for a small fee. Take him or her out in public as much as possible, with a cute “Adopt Me” vest or shirt on, so that people will approach you and talk to you. Spread the word through family and friends, since they will be your best and most trusted resource.

Potential Adopters

Screen potential adopters carefully and do a home visit if you can. Please visit our Screening Potential Homes page for details about interviewing, home visits, adoption contracts, and saying goodbye to your rescue.