Adoption procedure

We know it’s exciting and tempting to rush out to shop for a new pet but to save you time, money and potential disappointment, please review our Hutch & Cage Guide BEFORE splashing out on something that might not be suitable or pass the home visit. Without a suitable sized home for the guinea pigs, an adoption is unable to proceed. We have to adhere to the RSPCA criteria on this so must ensure our adopters do too.

You can download our Adoption Application Form 2018 here. But if you can’t meet the charity’s criteria, particularly when it comes to size of accommodation and where it will be housed, perhaps you should re-think whether guinea pigs are the right pets for you.

We politely ask that you don’t turn up to look at the guinea pigs without an appointment.  We are usually short staffed by volunteers who need to focus on cleaning and feeding the 70 or so piggies in our care every morning and we don’t hear from 8 out of 10 on spec visitors so maybe you can understand that our time is precious.  Most rescues are the same. It’s not that we don’t want you to adopt, rather that we don’t have the people power to show on spec visitors around.

But once we have your application or have started an email dialogue, we will be more than happy to see you.

All the information you need should be on the website, but if you have any further queries, please contact us.

Next steps

1. Email us your completed Application Form to jolockett.aprillodgeguinea@aol.com. We will review your application and get back to you as soon as possible with any queries.

2.  If you wish to proceed, please ensure you have everything you need, prior to the home visit. Although we are more than happy to advise if you don’t yet have equipment so you avoid expensive mistakes on buying hutches or runs which may not be suitable. We sometimes stock new or used equipment in our shop, the proceeds of which go directly into the charity so we can help you every step of the way to get your home ready for guinea pigs – whether you buy from us or not.

4. When you are ready we will liaise with you to arrange the home visit.  The home visitors are there to help you and give any advice you may need.

5. Subject to a successful home visit, an appointment can be made to choose and collect the guinea pigs.

6. We offer free hands on sessions to learn the basics on diet, handling and how to care for your pigs to keep them in good health. We insist on these sessions for owners new to keeping guinea pigs.

The home visit

Across Kent, our regional home visitors are there for help and advice should you need it. The home visitor will expect to talk to the main carer and he/she will expect to see a suitable enclosure, equipment, bedding choice and exercise area and will also be addressing the animals’ habitat during adverse weather conditions (note: the RSPCA Animal Welfare Act 2007 states that a pair of guinea pigs should not inhabit an enclosure which is less that 8sq ft). We must be firm on this so if you don’t have the space to house a pair in accommodation of this size, please be aware that we will have to turn down your application. All rescues stipulate this so it’s not just us being mean! We always have to think about what’s best for the guinea pigs.
In the meantime, PLEASE just ask for any advice you want. We are ALWAYS ready to help and advise and we NEED to re-home guinea pigs in our care to make room for the next unwanted ones so we want to help you as much as we can.