Did I get your attention? The phrase "free to a good home" (FTGH) usually gets peoples' attention, but do you know if their intentions are actually good? Can you guarantee that your loved pet will, in fact, go to a good home? The sad reality is that many animals that are acquired by the FTGH catch phrase do not end up in good homes at all.

Listed below are just some of the terrible situations your free to a good home pet could end up in. Don't get caught out. Know the risks and eliminate them.

Never assume that your pet will go to a good home just because the whole family has turned up and they all seem nice. Fraudulent people will go to any lengths to pull off a scam. No one is going to tell you straight out that your pet isn't really going to a good home. Be cautious and take your time making a decision. The well being of your pet relies on you making the best decision.

Some of the terrible reasons people search for FTGH animals:

1. To be used as bait to live-train fighting dogs.

2. To be used as fish and shark bait.

3. To be given as snake food.

4. To have cash paid for supplying research laboratories with testing animals.

5. For breeding stock at puppy farms or by unskilled backyard breeders after a quick buck.

6. To be used for 'blooding' (bait) racing greyhounds.

7. For a quick re-sale by somebody else to anybody else.

8. To be "rescued" by an animal hoarder.

9. To be tortured and/or killed by an animal hater. This is especially true for cats and kittens.

Free to good home.

If, for any reason at all, you are not totally happy about letting someone take your pet, do not give your pet to them! If you are worried about offending them, tell them you have a few more people waiting to meet your pet and you will get back to them should they be the successful adopter. What's more important, offending someone, or sending your pet off to the wrong situation?

Ways you can avoid having your pet end up in a bad situation:

  1. NEVER advertise your pet as free to a good home!
  2. Ask for an adoption fee. People place a higher value on things they have paid for. This will weed out people that are after a quick dollar, want a free animal for an unknown reason, and impulse adopters that haven't thought about the long term responsibility of owning a pet.
  3. Ask if you can visit the potential adopter's home so you can see for yourself that the environment is suitable. Most genuine people would not object to this.
  4. Ask about their vet. If they don't have one, but have another pet, why? That is not a good sign. If they don't have a vet because they have not had a pet before or are new to the area, suggest one for them.
  5. Ask why they are interested in owning your pet and gain more information on their suitability.
  6. Draw up a legally binding Adoption Agreement. Once again, genuine people won't object to signing one and will understand your concern about making sure your pet will be properly cared for. Search the internet for examples of conditions you can use..
  7. Have your pet desexed prior to finding them a new home. This will deter unscrupulous puppy farmers and backyard breeders.
Free to a good home - it's not always good.