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Can You Rehome Or Adopt A Dog In Lockdown 2?

The UK’s first Covid-19 lockdown was unprecedented and confusing for most of us, but while it was also more restrictive than the current lockdown we’re just beginning, lockdown 1 was also somewhat clearer in terms of what we could and couldn’t do.

Lockdown 2 is causing a reasonable amount of confusion for many pet-related businesses and organisations in terms of whether they’re permitted to continue trading at this time and if so, how; and despite calls for the government to clarify on this, it doesn’t seem as if that is going to happen!

Most businesses and organisations in the grey areas are being left to make their own decisions, and this includes pet rehoming charities and welfare organisations too, who are in a very difficult position whichever way you look at it.

So, can you rehome a dog in lockdown 2? Every shelter and organisation will have their own procedures in place in this respect, but this article will cover some of the most frequently asked questions about dog adoptions in lockdown 2, and what the UK’s various dog welfare organisations are doing about them. 

Read on to find out more about rehoming dogs in lockdown 2.

Can you adopt a dog in lockdown 2?

So, can you adopt a dog in lockdown 2, as in going into the process anew and ultimately taking your new dog home in lockdown? This is pretty variable. The RSPCA has stated that some of its rehoming centres will continue to enable adoptions while for others, provision for this will be suspended for the duration.

The Dogs Trust are saying “no” as a general answer, however, adoptions that have or had already been approved or were most of the way through the process when lockdown 2 started will generally be permitted to go ahead as planned.

Can you visit rehoming centres to view dogs in lockdown 2?

Can you go to a dog adoption centre in lockdown 2 to view and choose a dog? This is a “no” in most cases. The Dogs Trust’s rehoming centres are currently closed to the public until the end of lockdown, as are those operated by the RSPCA.

Dogs that were in the process of adoption are still being taken to their approved homes be contact-free deliveries, but you can’t book an appointment to go and view dogs in person at this time.


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Can you reserve a dog to adopt after lockdown 2 ends?

This depends. If you’ve already been through the process of being approved for adoption and all that remained was finding you the right dog, you might be able to reserve a dog to ensure that you are the first to be considered and/or can adopt as long as your in-person meeting and suitability for that particular dog are all assessed positively.

For those seeking to reserve a dog if you haven’t yet been through a shelter’s approval process, you can register your interest and potentially be placed in a queue for consideration for a particular dog.

However, don’t assume that this means adoption applications will be undertaken on a first come, first served basis, as the ultimate decision will be made depending on who is the best fit for the dog in question, not who spoke up first!

Are rehoming centres open in December?

Most of the UK’s rehoming centres will reopen at the end of lockdown to permit people to view dogs for adoption, but you will generally need an appointment for this as they will of course still be maintaining social distancing measures.

Can you rehome a dog in December?

This is likely to be very variable; why? Well, lockdown restrictions theoretically lift in December, so you would assume that shelters will be anxious to get back to rehoming.

However, many shelters and organisations suspend adoptions in December due to Christmas; both to discourage people getting a dog as a Christmas present, and because a time of upheaval like the festive season isn’t really the best time to bring home a new pet.

That said, some shelters that don’t usually permit December adoptions might actually do so this year due to the limits they’ve experienced in being able to enable adoptions during the Covid restrictions, so check locally.

Is lockdown 2 a good time to adopt a dog?

This depends. If you can find a dog for adoption during lockdown, there are both pros and cons to it. On the one hand, you should be able to stay home and settle your dog when you first get the and not have to leave them for long periods of time to go to work, but on the other hand, it is also important to set a routine for dogs. If you’ll be returning to work when lockdown 2 ends, this will mean a change in the routine your dog has only just started to settle into at that time.

The right answer for any individual will be quite variable here, but do consider the potential disadvantages as well as the upsides.


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