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Stray Thoughts

Found a Dog? Don’t Take it Straight to the Pound

Its impossible to say exactly how many of the found dogs listed here have actually been abandoned for one reason or another but its logical to assume that given the economic situation  in Ireland currently, that number is growing.

if you do find a dog and bring it to your local pound and if its not claimed within a mere 5 days on average, it will be euthenised. You give the dog a much better chance if you get your local rescue involved.  They are obliged to surrender strays to the pound but at least if they are involved they become aware of the status of the dog and can try to make arrangements to find the dog alternative accommodation.

So how do you locate your local rescues?  Irish Animal Shelters on Facebook maintain a list and also have contact details for many.

Here’s a short documentary on the topic of Irish dog pounds – be warned, it makes painful viewing.

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5 Responses to “Found a Dog? Don’t Take it Straight to the Pound”

  1. Naomi says:


    We found a Labrador in Ballygall Road, Glasnevin, Dublin 11 on Saturday 7th January 2012. He is not chipped, has no collar or id tag but appears to be well looked after.

    Despite our best efforts through local garda stations, libraries,,, facebook, various animal rescue sites we have not been able to find his owners and now want to find a new home for him.

    Will make a great pet for someone who has the time and space for him.

    We really don’t want to send him to the pound but we just don’t have the room for him as we already have a boxer dog.

    Any help to rehome him in the next two or three days would be greatly appreciated.


    • admin says:


      I would suggest that you try to find a local rescue who would be willing to take the dog – the Irish Animal Shelters page on Facebook has details of rescues all around the country and you can also find rescue contact details on

      This site got started because I found a dog myself so I know the position you are in. Well done on going so far to see to it that he doesn’t end up another pound statistic.

  2. sheelagh dale says:

    good blog – up north we are only too pleased to know about a found or lost stray so that we can help with any advice needed. we always advise that the person informs the dog warden but we also say that within the 6 days or so the dog will be needlessly destroyed if not rehomed or reclaimed so we ask the people to check on it for those 6 days, it also means that we too can check & make sure we are able to help the dog. it generally works out well. however some pounds are ok with a dog being with a rescue or a finder & will warn that should the owner turn up within the alloted time then they must hand dog over – thankfully there are good ppl out there who will then get permission from the warden to keep the dog.
    in the case of lost dogs we advise that sometimes ppl will pick up a cat or dog in an area not familiar to them so they will take animal to their area, thus starts the process of an animal getting into the system. therefore we advise them to cast their net widely to all councils, various newspapers, media & direct them to lost/found sites plus other rescues, also ppl are advised to go look for themselves because a description of a dog can be given differently by different ppl.
    it can be a nightmare for rescue as we will check ourselves with vets, groomers etc. all this could end with a simple microchip & dogs lives would be saved. it is to become legal in the north very shortly as well as a licence. have written a note on our facebook page on how to find your lost pet (under notes) it has been of great help & saves one repeating oneself on a regular basis lol!!!
    keep up the good work

  3. admin says:

    Thanks for that Karlin, this post was amended with respect to some feedback I got to the original post here.

    I think the consensus was that an animal stood a far better chance of surviving if the local rescues were aware that it was in the pound. Also most rescues would be aware of the obligation to inform the guards and the pound whereas Joe Public may not be.

    It would be good to see the pounds publishing the animals they have at a central location online so folk could check and as I have said before, I would be happy to explore ways we could streamline the process of submitting animals here for them as even an interim move in this direction.

  4. Karlin says:

    Actually rescues are not obliged, any more than individuals are, to take dogs to the pound. The legal requirement for either is simply to report the found animal to the guards and local pound. At this point it is wise to take the dog to a vet to scan for a microchip. If no chip, then poster the area where the dog was found — if recently groomed, check local groomers who may recognise the dog. Much of the time the owner will reclaim from the finder. Most rescues especially at this time of year are packed and will not be able to take an animal or help much, unfortunately. Pounds will at least humanely euthenise but if a finder can hang onto a dog the chances it will find its owner may be far better. If people put the *legally required* collar and tags on their dogs — and microchipped as well — there would be far fewer ending up dead.

    Don’t forget your ‘local’ pound may be in another county and if a dog roams a short distance it may be sent to a pound very far from where an owner might guess (eg Dublin dogs can end up in Meath and Kildare!) so if you lose a dog — you need to ring or visit all potentially relevant pounds. Legally the dog MUST be given 5 days before PTS.

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