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Surrender dog

Surrendering a Dog in Miami

surrendering a dog

Surrendering a Dog in Miami 

Sadly, sometimes even the most loving pet parents must face the reality that they can no longer care for the pup or cat they love. There are many reasons a person may choose to surrender a dog; some we can definitely sympathize with, others we wish were not as common as they are in Miami. What we want to stress is that having been surrendered does not necessarily mean that there is anything “wrong” with the dog.

Some reasons a dog has been surrendered may include:

  • Relocation to a home unsuitable for the pet’s needs
  • Time constraints (fewer hours at home, awkward schedule)
  • Financial issues (no longer able to afford veterinary care, etc.)
  • Behavioral issues (many pet parents can work through these issues, but many others do not have the time, financial means, or dedication to work through them)
  • Issues with new pets or family members

Coming to grips with the idea of being separated from your furry pal is tough enough, but when you consider how hard it is to re-home a dog in Miami-Dade County, it gets even harder. Sadly, Miami-Dade Animal Services has a 24 hour hold on surrendered animals. After this all-too-short window of time, your fur pal is eligible to be euthanized. A heart-breaking fact. Another heart-breaking fact is that many Miami-based shelters are most often full. For these reasons, we here at Equipaws always recommend the idea of pet adoption to anyone considering getting a dog or cat. There are an astounding number of homeless pets in our beautiful city waiting to become great companions to our residents and their families.

So, what are the options for pet owners considering surrendering their pets?

Breed-specific rescues — Dachshund Rescue, S.H.A.R.E. Shepherd Rescue, Pug Rescue — open your internet browser and type in your dog’s breed followed by the word “rescue” and then the word “Miami” and you will find some information — if not a direct website, at least some ideas. Some rescues might not be in your immediate area, but contacting them might prove fruitful as many of these rescues are connected to many do-gooders who may be willing to provide transit for your furry friend to their new temporary home.

What about my mutt? There are many rescues in the Miami area but many Miami-based rescues are often full. If you are able to take a drive up north, you might try looking up rescues in the Broward or West Palm Beach areas. We have compiled a list below, with links to the contact information for each shelter.

South Florida (and environs) Animal Shelters and Rescues

The following list is not entirely comprehensive but we have compiled a good bit of resources so as to provide as many options as possible. These rescues and shelters are “No Kill”. Some shelters are dog or cat exclusive.This list does NOT include breed-specific rescues. We have done our very best to weed through the internet and compile this list of rescues and shelters that, as best we can tell, at the time of publishing, are currently operating. Links will lead to direct website if the shelter has one. Where not applicable, link will redirect either to a related social media page (such as Google+, Facebook, or Yelp), or to an address and phone number listing on PetFinder.com.

1 Lucky Dog Rescue – Miami

A Second Chance for Furry Friends – North Bay Village

A Second Chance Rescue – West Palm Beach

Abandoned Pet Rescue – Ft. Lauderdale

Allen Babcock Dog & Cat Rescue – Ft. Lauderdale

All Pet Rescue – Vero Beach

Animal Aid Inc. – Boca Raton

Animal Rescue Force of South Florida – Palm Beach

Beyond Nine Cat Rescue – Pompano Beach

Big Dog Ranch Rescue – Wellington

Born Free – Key Biscayne

Caring About the Strays – Miami

Cats Exclusive, Inc. – Margate

Chesed Foundation Dog & Cat Rescue – Boca Raton

Companion Animal Rescue – North Miami

Coral Springs Humane Unit – Coral Springs

Crazy for Dogs, Nuts for Cats – Miami

Doggone Dogs – Hollywood

Dogs & Cats Forever – Ft. Pierce/St. Lucie

Fairy Tails – Miami

F.I.N.O. Doggie Rescue, Inc. – Parkland (West Palm Beach)

Florida Little Dog Rescue – St. Cloud

For the Love of Cats – Marco Island

Friends Forever – Miami

Friends of Gummi – Naples

Get a Life Pet Rescue – Plantation

Good Karma – Ft. Lauderdale

Grateful Paws Dog & Cat Rescue – Coral Springs

Have a Heart – Boca Raton

Hobo’s Wish – Hollywood

Humane Emergency Animal Rescue – Miami

KAZ’s Corner Pet Rescue – Lauderhill

Luv a Pet – Royal Palm Beach

Noah’s Ark – Pompano

One By One Dog Rescue – Miami

Paws 2 Help – West Palm Beach

Paws 4 You – Miami

Partners for Pets of South Florida, Inc. – North Miami

Pets at Risk – North Miami Beach

Pets in Distress – Davie

Peggy Adams Animal Rescue – West Palm Beach

Puppies Under Protection, Inc. – Royal Palm Beach

Raining Cats & Dogs – Tamerac

R U 4 Me Pet Rescue – Boynton Beach

Sabbath Memorial Dog Rescue – Miami

Save a Dog / Save a Cat – Lake Worth

Safe Harbor Animal Sanctuary – Jupiter

Small Paws Rescue – Margate

Stand Up For Animals, Inc. – Marathon

Stray Aid & Rescue, Inc. – Ft. Lauderdale

Sunshine All Breed Rescue, Inc. – Ft. Lauderdale

The Cat Network – Miami

Top Paw Rescue, Inc. – Hollywood


Some links we used for research that include more rescues and shelters in Florida:

1. Smitten with Kittens

2. Have a Heart

3. No Kill Network


Finally, don’t give up hope. The sad reality is that many shelters and rescues may be full and unable to take in your dog or cat, but you will find people who are willing to help you re-home your fur pal in time. We will have another blog soon, interviewing some of our clients who are parents of adopted pets and who have done some work in the rescue/shelter world with some tips and advice, so stay tuned, and please share this blog with anyone considering re-homing their pet (or anyone looking to adopt, of course!).

— 1 Comment —

  • Edna

    That’s true. Don’t ever give up. There is always hope in finding a suited shelter to surrender your pet with. Also, please make sure that it is the decision you are not going to regret at the end. Surrendering really is heartbreaking for our beloved pets.


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