Do you need to rehome your dog?

Oct 17, 2018

People need to rehome their dog(s) for many reasons – a change in family circumstances, change in accommodation, moving interstate/overseas or simply because they can’t afford to keep them anymore.

Deciding that you need to rehome your dog is a difficult decision and ARF understands that it can be an emotional time. While ARF will help out the best that we can with dogs in the Canberra or nearby NSW region, it is important to remember that our objects state that our focus is on dogs at imminent risk of euthanasia – this usually means dogs in the pounds. ARF foster carers have limited space and it is rare that a carer will be able to take your dog into their own home for rehoming.

There are a number of things you should do prior to contacting ARF:

  • If you got your dog from a breeder, try contacting the breeder to see if they will take the dog back and rehome him or her.
  • Contact a breed specific rescue group. There are a number of rescue groups that concentrate on specific breeds and often have waiting lists of people wanting that type of dog.
  • Desex your dog. Your dog can then not be used for backyard breeding and is more likely to be chosen by a responsible pet owner.
  • Make a start on trying to re-home the dog yourself. Advertise him or her on local noticeboards, and with friends in dog clubs  and forums. You can also contact Canberra Dog Rehoming page on Facebook
  • Team Dog have some great advice for people needing to rehome their dogs here and here.

ARF can help in the following ways:

  • ARF has an extensive and very successful poster network. This network has rehomed hundreds, if not thousands of dogs. Send us a photo of your dog, details including the dog’s name, age, breed, size, whether he or she is desexed, microchipped and vaccinated, as well as if he or she is good with kids, needs a friend and exercise requirements, along with your contact details and we can have a poster distributed very quickly.
  • If you are able to keep the dog in your home, then an ARF carer may be able to assist you with rehoming him or her. You will need to sign papers to surrender the dog to ARF and the carer will come and meet you and your dog to assess their requirements for a new home. The dog will be advertised on the ARF website and the foster carer will accept enquiries and decide on the right home for the dog.

You can take your dog to the pound and surrender him or her. Both Domestic Animal Services (DAS) and Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council Animal Management Facility  have low euthanasia rates and excellent relationships with rescue groups. ARF assesses the dogs at DAS and Queanbeyan each week and we do everything we can to find them a place in a rescue group, either locally or interstate. ARF has assisted in the rescue and direct adoption of thousands of dogs from these pounds.

However, the pound is a scary place for most dogs and this can cause your dog to display behaviours which are not conducive to them being adopted. There are also times that ARF do not have the resources to rescue your dog and if the pound is full, your dog may be euthanased after seven days. All options should be considered before surrendering your dog to the pound.

Finally, be realistic. If you have explored every avenue and have had no success then it might be kinder to take your dog to the vet and have him or her put to sleep while you hold them. Please never abandon your pet,  this is one of the cruellest fates any domestic pet could meet. The danger, fear, and suffering they will encounter are heartbreaking even if they manage to survive at all.

Please contact if you need help with rehoming your dog.

Also see:  Useful links – pounds & other rescue groups

What should I do if my dog is lost?

Jan 31, 2017

1. Act immediately

  • Check and post on Facebook in particular Canberra Lost Pet DataBase
  • Contact Domestic Animal Services, the RSPCA, Queanbeyan Pound and vet clinics. Leave a full description of your pet, your name and contact details. We suggest that you go to these places and check for yourself – see below for contact details.
  • Do a letterbox drop in your area.
  • Put posters in shops, vet clinics, bus stops, on power poles, community noticeboards, school noticeboards. Stick a poster to the back window of your car.
  • Advertise in daily and weekly newspapers. Contact local radio stations – many run free announcements.

2. Search the neighbourhood thoroughly

  • Search sheds, garages, buildings, parks, schools, waterways, construction sites. Do a complete door-knock, returning to houses where no-one was home later and ask every single passerby – you never know who may have spotted your dog.
    • If you have a local Neighbourhood Watch group, enlist their help.
    • Ask the Postman – they go to every home and could be a great help.
    • Ask school children – they WALK the neighbourhood, and can be a great resource. They may also know if the dog is in someone’s backyard.

3. Visit animal shelters in person

  • The ACT Pound (Domestic Animal Services), the RSPCA, and the Queanbeyan Pound are three different organisations. Check all shelters in person every couple of days. It is important to go in person as their description may not match yours. Carry documentation such as registration, microchip number, pedigree papers, vaccination certificates, photos etc.
  • Domestic Animal Services – Mugga Lane, Symonston ACT 2609 – (02) 62072424
    DAS website
  • RSPCA – 12 Kirkpatrick Street (off Cotter Road) Weston ACT 2611  (02) 6287 8100
  • Queanbeyan Council Pound – Old Sydney Road, Queanbeyan NSW 2620 – (02) 6298 0269
    Queanbeyan Pound

Useful links – pounds & other rescue groups

Nov 15, 2016

Domestic Animal Services (DAS)

The DAS office and shelter facilities are located on Mugga Lane, Symonston and can be contacted by phone 13 22 81 during business hours between 9:00am and 5:00pm Monday to Friday and 8:30am to 4:30pm Saturday.

To check Public Access hours to the Shelter please ring 13 22 81.

GPO Box 158
Canberra City ACT 2601
Telephone: 13 22 81
Fax: (02) 6207 2252

Website:  DAS impounded dogs

Emergency after hours contact for dog attacks or injured dogs and cats  13 22 81

Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council Animal Management Facility

Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council Animal Management Facility is located on Old Sydney Road, Queanbeyan. It is open between 8.30am and 10am, 4pm – 5pm Monday to Friday and 1pm – 5pm on Saturdays.

Corner of Ellerton Drive and Old  Sydney Road, Queanbeyan
Phone: 6285 6269
Fax: 6298 4666

Website: QBN Pound



Why do dogs need to be rescued?

Mar 7, 2014

It’s a sad fact that there are too many unwanted dogs and not enough homes.

Many people worry about adopting an older dog from a shelter or rescue organisation because they believe the animal will have behavioural or other problems. But, the truth is that most dogs in pounds and shelters are perfectly normal, well-behaved dogs who are there through no fault of their own!

  • Dogs get accidentally lost from gates being left open.
  • Dogs get frightened by thunderstorms and fireworks, escape, and then become lost.
  • Inappropriate dogs are chosen on impulse, and later dumped or handed into the shelter.
  • Their companions just lose interest in them.

Dogs lose their homes for many different reasons, most of them having nothing to do with problems of the dog, but rather with those of the person giving them up. The top ten reasons* people surrender their dogs are:

1. Moving

2. Landlord not allowing pets

3. Too many animals in household

4. Cost of pet maintenance

5. Owner having personal problems

6. Inadequate facilities

7. No homes available for litter mates

8. Having no time for pet

9. Pet illness

10. Biting

[*US Study conducted by the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy (NCPPSP) published in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science (JAAWS)].

Older dogs can also have many advantages over puppies, such as toilet training, no chewing and a known temperament. The most important thing is to find the right type of dog to suit the individual. Most dogs become unwanted because people don’t do enough research or thinking about the right sort of dog (if any) to suit their lifestyle.

For general tips and hints see the About ARF page.

How much does an ARF dog cost?

Oct 21, 2013

ARF dogs are microchipped, desexed, vaccinated, wormed and health checked.

To help cover our costs, ARF asks an adoption fee of:

Puppies aged under 16 weeks (C3 vaccination) – $400 – includes $100 contribution to puppy classes

Dogs aged 16 weeks to 8yrs (C5 vaccination) – $350

Dogs aged over 8yrs (C5 vaccination) – $150

The adoption fee contributes to veterinary and other standard rescue costs, although many of our dogs also require additional veterinary care for injuries or illnesses they have when we rescue them. This adds considerably to the vet costs associated with rescuing and re-homing each dog, and the rest of the money we need is made up from fundraising and donations.

Our foster carers also contribute large amounts of their own money to save and foster dogs. We are totally non-profit and all our members are volunteers.

Donations to help us with costs are always very welcome and appreciated.

Also see:

For general tips and hints see the About ARF page.

Please contact us if you would like any further information.