VOCAL – Voices of Change Animal League is a non-profit animal welfare organization that is focused on solving the homeless pet problem in our community. One of our programs is rescue and adoption for cats and dogs. Our rescue efforts are focused on animals in need in Marion County only. Currently, there are so many homeless pets in Marion County we feel strongly about only intaking pets from within our county. We receive multiple surrender requests each week for animals. Please note that filling out our intake request form does not guarantee that we can take your cat or dog. Someone from our team will contact you if we are able to accept your cat or dog. Intaking an animal is something we try to do only when absolutely necessary and after all other options have been exhausted. At the end of the day, our main goal is to keep animals in their homes and out of shelters/rescues by offering additional resources and alternatives to surrender. Often times, people think they have no other choice but to rehome/surrender their pet, but sometimes with just a little effort, your decision to keep your pet, or even hold on to your pet for a few weeks, could mean the difference between life and death for them.
Here are some things to consider…
If you can answer “YES” to any of the questions below, please take the time to explore those options before deciding if you need to surrender your cat or dog to VOCAL.
Are there behavioral or training issues?
Does your cat or dog need training? Does your dog dig under your fence? Has your cat stopped using the litter pan? Talking to a trainer or behaviorist may help solve your problem. Sometimes making minor adjustments to your home can be an easy and affordable fix and helps keep your pet in your home. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we would be happy to suggest a trainer or behaviorist within Marion County who can likely help you alleviate your pets current issues.
Are you experiencing financial difficulty?
Our pet food bank, Project Feed, offers free pet food for cats and dogs in Marion County. We want to ease the financial burden of owning a pet for owners experiencing financial difficulty. We know people love their pets and we want to do everything we can to keep pets in their homes with the people who love them. We also offer low-cost veterinary care for cats and dogs in Marion County. Providing these services at a price point that is more attainable is our goal to help more owners afford routine care for their animals. We also offer Medical Financial Assistance for pets who need immediate care and their owners are unable to afford services.
Are you experiencing major life changes?
Are you getting married, having a baby, or moving? Did you start a new job with longer hours? Often times, major life changes make people think that their pets won’t adapt, or that they would be better off in a different home. Here’s the truth: your dog or cat will likely adjust to your new life and your new schedule just fine. The sad reality is that with our community flooded with so many homeless pets, it could take weeks, months, or sometimes even years for a rescue group or shelter to find your pet a new home.
Did you acquire your pet from a breeder?
If so, have you contacted them? If he or she is reputable, you would have signed a contract at the time you purchased your pet, stipulating that the cat or dog should be returned if you decide to no longer keep them. Please contact your breeder first before contacting us.
Did you acquire your dog from a shelter or rescue organization?
If so, have you contacted the organization? Many shelters and rescues ask that you return the animal to them if you are no longer able to keep him/her. Most have this stipulated in the adoption contract you signed with them. Before looking further, double check with the rescue or shelter.
Have you tried rehoming on your own?
Is your animal spayed and neutered? Do you have a flexible timeline for rehoming? If so, we recommend utilizing Rehome by Adopt-a-Pet.com (https://rehome.adoptapet.com/) Adopt-a-pet has created this portal specifically for owners to use to rehome their animals. This portal has the same functionality that we use as a rescue on their website but now they have brought their platform directly to individuals. Using Adopt-a-Pet Rehome is a safe, no cost way to rehome your animal. Below are some things to consider when rehoming on your own.
- Never list your pet online for free. Dog fighters and animal abusers often look for free animals as easy targets. Even a small rehoming fee deters people with bad intentions.
- Ask for vet references, and perform a home visit with the potential adopter to ensure your pet will be kept in a safe environment.
- Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t give the person your pet.
Are you moving or having housing issues?
Is your current living situation not allowing you to keep your pet? Are you in search of pet-friendly housing? Click here to search for friendly rentals in your area. We hope this resource is helpful and allows you to find a place to live that is friendly for you and your pet.
We hope you were able to answer yes to some of the above questions and were able to solve your problem. But, if you haven’t found any solutions after carefully considering the information above, you can submit our intake request form. Please be aware that our rescue program relies on volunteers/fosters and is completely funded by donations therefore our resources are limited. All of our cats live in foster homes so we are only able to intake when space is available. Majority of our dogs also live in foster homes but some are residents at our kennel property which is consistently at capacity. Due to capacity restrictions, we may not be able to readily intake your animal, but we do review all requests. We receive many applications each week and only reply to those we can take. Our goal is to reply within one week.
Thank you for taking the time to review our information and better understand our rescue program. We realize rehoming your pet is a difficult decision and we wish you all the best.
Intake Request Form