Want to give a home to a dog up for adoption in Dubai? Here’s the process to follow
16 August 2018| Last updated on 19 January 2020
There are hundreds of stray and abandoned dogs in Dubai that are searching for their forever home.
Sadly, due to the transient nature of Dubai’s lifestyle, there are a large number of dogs in the emirate that are left homeless. Whether they are strays already, abandoned or their owners are looking to re-home them due to a change in circumstances… Licenced rescue organisations and animal welfare groups are left with taking care of these pups.
Because of this, Dubai has no shortage of dogs and other pets that are in need of a home. If you’re not sure that you can commit long term by adopting a dog in Dubai, there is also the option of fostering.
On the other hand, if you’re 100% sure you’d like to adopt, the most important thing we must remind you of is…
A dog is a lifetime commitment, and will come along with costs.
Here are the steps to take when adopting a dog in Dubai to ensure both you and your new four-legged friend are happy…
1. Check your tenancy contract allows pets
The absolute first step to take when adopting a dog in Dubai is to ensure that your current residence allows pets.
Too often we see owners left with the impossible task of re-homing their pooch because they did not check if their building or rental unit allows pets to stay there.
How can you check if your building or unit is dog-friendly?
It should be in your tenancy contract, and clearly stated. Even if your building is pet-friendly, you must ensure that it is in your tenancy contract, signed and agreed by both you and your landlord, that dogs are allowed to stay with you during your stay.
If your tenancy contract says pets are allowed, but the building you live in doesn’t – you may be faced with a tricky situation in the future, especially if a neighbour or the building manager complain about your canine friend.
To be on the safe side, for you and your potential adoptee, make sure from the very beginning that your Dubai home is pet-friendly. Furthermore, a rescue group will ask for proof of your pet-friendly contract, so keep a copy aside that you can use later.
2. Check that your community is pet-friendly
After you’re assured your home allows pets, the next step is to check out your community. Is it dog-friendly? Are you able to walk your dog in your area of residence in Dubai? Is there suitable walking routes you and your dog can enjoy? If not – where’s the nearest doggy day care, or boarding facilities?
These are some of the important questions you need to raise and answer before welcoming an animal in your home. After all, your dog will be a member of your family, and you want to ensure that their wellbeing and lifestyle is the best it can be.
3. Get clued-up on Dubai’s laws for dog owners
The final preparatory step before bringing a dog into your home is educating yourself. Dubai and the UAE has laws in place to ensure the welfare of any animal is protected at all times.
It’s important that you fully understand what is expected of you as a dog owner in Dubai, and the trouble you may face should you break any of the emirate’s regulations in place.
Things like failing to vaccinate your dog, keeping a prohibited breed of dog, walking your dog off-leash in public and even failing to clean-up after your dog can land you in hot water should you be caught.
4. Get in touch with a rescue group
The next step is to reach out to one of the many, brilliant animal welfare groups and organisations that exist here in Dubai and across the UAE. You can find our full list of licenced animal groups in Dubai here so you can get started.
Filling in a dog adoption form in Dubai
All rescue groups will request that you fill in an adoption application form; this helps their team to figure out what animal would be best suited for your lifestyle, your home and whether you yourself are a suitable dog owner here in Dubai.
They will ask questions like what type of place do you live in – villa, or apartment – what is your daily schedule like, if you work and if so, for how many hours, plus whether you have any previous experience with dogs and more.
It may feel like a job interview – but understand, it’s to help ensure the right dog is perfect for the right family so as to avoid any trouble in the future.
Why should I work with a licenced animal group in Dubai only?
There are several rescue organisations that are running across the country, but only a handful are actually licenced.
What does this mean, you ask? Well, it’s important that you work with a licenced rescue group in the UAE because you can be sure they have the right permits and government approvals to be running in the country.
Too often there are individuals and small groups who utilise social media in an effort to find support, foster homes and potential adopters – but they’re functioning without the correct licencing. This is not to disregard their hard work and efforts – after all, any person that can help relieve the pressure of stray and abandoned dogs in need of a home in Dubai helps tremendously.
Nevertheless, we urge you to take caution when offering adoption fees or other monetary support to those who don’t hold the correct licences.
5. Head to an adoption day, or visit a shelter
Once you’re in touch with one of Dubai’s animal rescue groups, you can then choose to visit one of the adoption days held across the city, or visit one of the shelters directly.
The first priority of any animal rescue group in Dubai is to ensure that any home one of their dogs go to is suitable. You can work closely with the rescuers to find a pooch that will fit perfectly in your home – based on their size, exercise requirements, health needs and other factors.
Understandably, you may have a particular breed in mind – whether due to personal preference or previous experience – but this should not deter you from meeting some of the lovely rescue dogs that are searching for a home, regardless of their age, colour, shape and size.
6. Research the breed requirements
Now you’ve met your new family member, have you done your thorough research into their breed’s requirements? For instance, the lifestyle of a Maltese can be entirely different to that of a Saluki or desert-mix breed.
Information resources like Paw Their Sake and Emirates Animal Welfare Society who focus entirely on animal welfare in Dubai and the UAE are a great go-to resource for information related to your rescue pup.
7. Adoption fees – how much can you expect to pay?
There are a lot of varying factors that may determine how much you may pay for an adoption fee, and it also depends on what licenced animal rescue group in Dubai you get in touch with.
At K9 Friends, for example, adoption fees vary from AED 1,050 to AED 2,625.
Why do I need to pay an adoption fee for a dog in Dubai?
Simply put, the money you give to the rescuer to cover the cost of the dog’s adoption helps with the costs of specific treatments they must carry out on every rescued animal; things like microchipping, initial vaccinations, flea and worming treatments as well as neutering/spaying the animal if required.
The money may also help contribute towards the organisation’s running costs – so they can continue to function and help provide homeless dogs with finding their new family.
8. Make sure you’re prepared to bring your new pup home
Before you pick up your dog and bring them home, a little shopping will be required to help prepare your home and help make it as comfortable as possible for them.
The basics include water and food dishes, a bed, blanket, training pads, training treats, toys and a collar and leash. And if you can get a collar tag with their name and your contact number on – bonus!
You’ll also need to be clued-up on what food they’ve previously been given and if they have any allergies that the rescue organisation are aware of. Then you can decide what food and type of diet you’ll be giving your new family member, and make sure you have a supply of it before bringing them home with you.
9. Keep the rescuer(s) updated and share the love!
A lot of the animal welfare groups in Dubai and the UAE are heavily invested in their cause, personally. We guarantee they’ll remember each and every pup that has passed through their organisations, and so make sure you keep them up to date with how little Ghost, Bailey, Perry or Jackson are getting on!
Once your new family member is home safe and sound, patience and training will be absolutely key to ensure they become comfortable in their new home. A little persistence may be required with a rescue – but once they’re settled, you’ll feel no other love like it.