Eddie in his basket being stroked by a member of the team

Our adoption process

Every year we find new, caring homes for thousands of homeless pets. Each pet is different, so when you apply to adopt a pet our team will look at whether you're able to offer them everything they need.

How to adopt a pet from Blue Cross

1. Start your search

Have a look at our pets currently looking for their new home. Take a look at the pet profiles to learn more about their needs and whether they are a good match for you.

If you are unable to complete your application online you can contact your local centre.

2. Express your interest using our online form

When you find a pet you think is a good match, you can immediately start an adoption application online.

3. We'll let you know we've received your application

You will get an email from us to let you know your application form has been received.

4. We’ll contact you within 10 days

Within the 10 days after we receive your application form, we will either call you for a chat about the pet or we will email you to let you know you’ve been unsuccessful.

We’re a small team and we do everything from vet visits, feeding and assessing the pets in our care, to going through the application forms and contacting potential new owners, so please don't contact us about your application in the meantime because we'll be unable to give you an update.

Some of our more popular pets receive multiple application forms from people who would give them a wonderful home, so please don't take it personally if you're unsuccessful.

5. You'll be invited to meet the pet

Each pet is different. We may host a virtual meet, invite you to our rehoming centre or bring the pet to you. However you meet, we’ll talk you through everything beforehand.

6. Taking your pet home

We'll invite you to the centre to collect them and take them to their happy new home. We'll discuss with you beforehand what you'll need to bring with you to take them home safely.

How much does adopting a pet cost?

Our adoption fees go towards some of the costs of caring for pets during their stay with us. This can include things like food, vet checks, vaccinations and neutering. We accept card payments.

How much you'll pay depends on the species and age of the pet:


  • Less than six months old – £500
  • Six to 12 months old – £400
  • One to seven years old – £300
  • Eight years old and older – £200


  • Kitten up to 16 weeks old – £175
  • Pair of kittens – £300
  • Four months to seven years old – £150
  • Eight years old and older – £100

Guinea pig

  • £40 (pair £75)


  • £60 (pair £90)


  • £25 (pair £40)
  • Groups of three or more in the same cage – from £60


  • £12 (pair – £20)
  • Groups of three or more in the same cage – from £30


  • £12 (pair – £20)
  • Groups of three or more in the same cage – from £30


  • £22 (pair – £40)
  • Groups of three or more in the same cage – from £55


  • £50 (pair £80)


  • £12 (pair – £20*)

African soft furred rat

  • £12 (pair – £20)
  • Groups of three or more in the same cage – from £30


Read more on how much it costs to adopt a horse or pony from us.

*Hamsters should generally be kept as single pets. This would only apply with a pair of already bonded roborovski hamsters.

After you've adopted your pet

When you take your new pet home, that’s not the end of the journey for us. Our Behaviour and Training Service offers practical help and support for dogs, cats and rabbits, and our free pet advice webpages cover a range of topics for all species to help you and your pet enjoy a happy life together. We love to hear about how pets are getting on in their new homes, so please do get in touch.

Rehoming a horse from Blue Cross

Our horses are rehomed on a loan agreement, which is a little bit different to adopting another pet. Read more about rehoming a horse.

What if I need to give up my pet?

Whatever the reason for giving up a pet, we know how difficult it can be. Please always contact your nearest Blue Cross centre. One of our team will ask you some questions and let you know if we are able to help. Or, if you need to give up your horse, please email us and we’ll be in touch.

Find out how we can help if you need to give up your pet.

— Page last updated 13/02/2024