Adoption procedure

We know it’s exciting and tempting to go shopping for guinea pigs but to save you time, money and potential disappointment, please speak to us first about the minimum dimensions of a cage or hutch required BEFORE before splashing out as without a suitable sized home for the guinea pigs, an adoption is unable to proceed. Most enquiries don’t get beyond this stage because the potential new owners bought something that is unsuitable so PLEASE ask first! We have to adhere to the RSPCA criteria on this so must ensure our adopters do too.

 

Here is a brief guide on what is and isn’t suitable. ALGPR – Accommodation Guide 2017

 

We also respectfully 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 and 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 make an appointment for you to view the piggies.

In the meantime, please review our Adoption Application Form to ensure you are able to meet the criteria. If you can’t, particularly when it comes to size of hutch and where it will be housed, then you may need to re-think whether guinea pigs are right for you.
Most of the information you need is on the website, but if you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to 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.  We also offer free hands on sessions to learn the basics on how to care for your pigs to keep them in good health.

6. You will also be asked to make a free, quarterly health check appointment for worming, nail clipping and checks for any abnormalities

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 who is normally the adopter and over 18 years of age. 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 quite 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 may have to turn down your application. All rescue places stipulate this so it’s not just us being mean! We always have to think about what’s best for the guinea pigs.
The home visitor will discuss the free healthcare arrangements which is four times per year (the reason for this is that the wormer lasts 12 weeks). Of course you can call in sooner if you have any concerns. All health care checks for our ex-rescues are free for the rest of their lives.
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.
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