Adopted pets need time to acclimate
I recently read about Ellen DeGeneres giving a puppy she adopted to a friend when the puppy did not get along with her cats. Since she had signed a contract that prohibits transferring pet ownership, the rescue group reclaimed the puppy from its newfound family to the distress of the new owners. What is the Hawaiian Humane Society's policy for returning an animal?
Answer: Hawaiian Humane Society's adoption advisers are here to help people select a pet that is a good match. But the reality is that sometimes it's just not a good fit. That's why the Humane Society offers a 30-day return policy for a full refund of the adoption fee ($60 for cats and dogs, $25 for rabbits or smaller animals).
If a new owner can find a friend or family member who understands what the animal needs and is willing to make that commitment, the Humane Society has no issue with ownership transfer, as long as the animal's microchip record and -- if a dog -- licensing information is updated. Keeping a pet's record current is the best way for a lost animal to find its way home.
Just as with people, pet-owner relationships and family assimilation take time, training, patience and love. Any pet needs at least a month to adapt to its new life, especially when other pets are in the family. The society's behavior team also serves to support the successful integration of a new pet into the family, providing education and advice.
Q: What does the society do to ensure pets are matched with the right people?
A: Part of getting pets adoption-ready means learning as much as possible about the animal. The Humane Society evaluates whether the animal is best suited for families with children, is high-energy or easygoing, among other personality and behavior assessments. The animal also receives a comprehensive health check to ascertain any special needs. Potential adopters are made aware of the animal's characteristics and are encouraged to assess their own needs and lifestyle to find the right companion.
The Hawaiian Humane Society welcomes questions by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org. Indicate "Pet Ohana" in the subject line. Or, write "Pet Ohana," Hawaiian Humane Society, 2700 Waialae Ave., Honolulu 96826.