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Adopting an animal

The adoption process is as follows:

  • Under no circumstances should a member of public attend the Animal Centre without an appointment. All appointment will be arranged during the course of the adoption process by our reception team.

  • The health & safety of our staff and volunteers is of utmost importance to us. Unfortunately, we can't adopt out animals to homes where a member of the household is currently showing symptoms of, or has a confirmed case of Covid-19, 

  • Any potential adopter should either be able to access the internet and be able to print & sign documentation / supply photos and / or videos and return them 'electronically', or be prepared to exchange rehoming paperwork by post and / or in person. A hybrid of electronic or physical means is acceptable, but electronic exchanges are usually quicker.

Step 1 - Initial interest / application

  1. View all current animals listed on the National RSPCA Find a Pet page (for animals at Southport) or our Facebook page. If you do not readily have access to the internet to see the animals ready for adoption, you may access internet services at your local authority library, A librarian may be able to assist you.

  2. When you view an animal online that you wish to apply for, please complete a Perfect Match Application. (Please note: We do not accept ad hoc application forms for animals not listed) 

  3. Perfect Match Forms can be found here:  CAT / DOG Once completed please email it to (applications will formally commence upon receipt of a properly completed form and be processed on a 'first come / first served' basis; triggering a 48 hours 'temporary hold' on the animal. Alternatively a paper form can be collected from our Centre or sent to you by 2nd class post. Please bare in mind the time this will take compared with an electronic application.

  4. A member of staff will contact you to go through your application to ensure our basic criteria have been met. During or after this conversation, you will either be progressed to Step 2, or your 'temporary hold' will be removed.


Step 2 – Matching the animal

  1. During your phone call you be told detailed information about the animal including medical & behaviour details. Currently, we are facing a shortage on cat vaccines often meaning new owners need to complete the vaccination course, our reception team will let you know based on the individual cat what stage they are in. (More details below)

  2. You may be asked to provide more information such as, if you own other animals we will need to see proof of vaccination cards. Or if you rent your home, we do require landlord permission. 

  3. If you own other animals, you will be asked to provide video footage. Please note, if you have a current dog & are applying for another dog we will require your dog to come to the Centre so we can assess compatibility.

  4. At the end of phone call you will also be asked to provide a home visit. 


Step 3 – Home Visit & Booked Appointment

  1. We will review your home location on Google Maps when possible.

  2. Most homes visits are completed electronically. On some occasions a Home Visitor will make arrangements with you to come to see your home in person.  If done electronically we will ask for photographs or a short video of inside of your home (planned animal sleeping area, main rooms such as living space, dinning area/kitchen as well as your rear garden as appropriate).

  3. If approved, you will be invited in to the Centre to meet your chosen animal. 

  4. If all is well after the meeting an appointment will be arranged with you for the collection of your animal.

Step 4 – Appointment to view and collect your animal

  1. At you collection appointment, you will need to sign an adoption form and make payment by either cash or card, 

  2. If adopting a dog, you will need to provide your own collar, lead & dog tag. Plus a safe way to travel home, such a seatbelt or crate. 

  3. If adopting a cat, you will need to provide your own cat carrier. 

Step 5 - Ongoing Support

  1. Ongoing support can only be provided electronically, or by telephone.

  2. 4-6weeks post adoption our reception team will contact you to check in and see how your adopted animal is. 

  3. If for any reason it becomes necessary to return an animal for any reason, you should in the first instance talk to a member of staff via telephone, to see if we can be of help to resolve a situation. Failing that, assuming we have space, an appointment will be made for you to return the animal.

    Adoption Fees From:
    Dogs £200
    Cats £100

    Please note: Charges may be significantly more for puppies and specific breeds, you will 
    be informed of costings within the initial phone call

    Please note - important vaccine information:

    Nationally supplies of cat and dog vaccines have become challenging across the sector at the present time.

    The national RSPCA's head vet has issued clinical guidance to make best use of this limited supply and therefore your adopted pet may not have received the full course of vaccinations. Information will be provided with adopters on how best to manage this situation.
    Given the unprecedented situation we need to preserve and focus our stocks therefore adopters will need to arrange with their veterinary practice for vaccinations as and when they become available. As a charity caring for some of the animals most in need we have had to take measures to ensure those animals most vulnerable to disease receive the limited vaccinations available to us.

    In effect this may mean that your cat or dog will leave us as not fully vaccinated, or a course has been started with a vaccine not stocked by all vets. It will be your responsibility to locate a vet that does stock the departure vaccination for its booster. Unfortunately, if coverage lapses you will need to recommence a new course of the vaccine available at your vets.

    This only applies to vaccines and not flea prevention treatments / wormers. The rehoming fee re
    mains unaltered.


Click on the animal pictures below to see the animals that we currently have available


Geoffrey Cat.jpg
Marvin Dog.jpg
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