It's a sad fact that many of the pets taken in during the pandemic are now being dumped. If you have found such a lost pet, it may be very difficult to take it to a shelter as many are full. As such, the best option is to try and home it yourself.
Here are some tips to help you put together a professional-looking package that will maximise attention and uptake.
A clean-looking pet with a pretty bow or bandana, or playing with a colourful feather if it's a cat, will instantly attract eyes.
Take a sharp photo that focuses on the face. We're looking for loads of personality, so the eyes really matter. Also, you don't want a wall of peeling paint, or other off-putting background. Use pretty backdrop, take a few test shots first, and be prepared to crop. When you're done, petfinder.my has a cute meter that will analyse your photo.
If the dog is playful, take a short 10- or 15-second shot of them playing, laughing or interacting with a human or other pet. If they can do a trick, capture it!
If you're lucky, people will forward your photo and video, but the text that goes with it may be missing. It's therefore important that each has your name and contact on it. Add a date as well. For instance, "Barker is looking for a home! Contact Grace in PJ at 010xxxxxxx. 1June22"
Adopters need to know the pet's age, sex, state of health, temperament and special needs. Listing vaccination and neutering status is an absolute must. It also helps to add in a few lines about the dog's personality. Writing about the rescue is a double-edged sword: It may get pity votes but readers may also think the dog is difficult. So use your discretion.
Post on as many social media outlets as possible and ask friends to share for you. The more eyes, the more likely you can find a good home.
In case you hit it lucky and find an adopter right away, have a rescuer on standby to pick up on any disappointed adopters. With any luck, you can help a second dog find a home.