Dog Ownership

Can’t Stop Crying After Rehoming Your Dog



You’ve made the painful choice to rehome your dog. Now, all you can do is cry. Did you make the wrong decision? Find out below when you can’t stop crying after rehoming your dog.

If you haven’t rehomed your dog and you’re just trying to anticipate what will happen after you do, just know that not everyone is crying and miserable after rehoming, especially when a dog has been causing high stress levels. (Read: Rehoming a Dog with Behavior Problems) In other words, you may not cry after rehoming your dog and that will be okay, too.

Now, that we got that out of the way, let’s help those of you who are crying after rehoming your dog.

What to Do When You Can’t Stop Crying After Rehoming Your Dog

A dog becomes one of our family members. Sometimes, family members can no longer live with us. It’s never an easy decision, but most of the time, it’s a decision that’s for the best of everyone involved. Nevertheless, if you can’t stop crying after rehoming your dog, the following can help you.

can't stop crying after rehoming dog

Give It Time

Time does heal all wounds. If you recently rehomed your dog, it makes sense that you’re still suffering from it. It takes time to grieve the loss of a family member, no matter the situation.

You’re Not Alone

Many dog owners rehome their dogs, and it’s the best thing they could have done. Do not think you’re the only one who has done it.

Many people rehome their dogs after having a baby. Learn More: Rehoming Dog After Baby

You Gave Your Dog a Good Home

Rehoming a dog means you took the time to find a good home for your pup. That means a lot. Don’t let yourself feel bad about it when you have not only given your dog a good home, but you’ve given a family a good dog.

You Did the Right Thing

Many dog owners who rehome their dogs feel guilt. Do not feel guilty about it. You tried to give your new puppy a good home, but it just wasn’t the right fit for the both of you. You didn’t do anything wrong.

You’ve Given Your Dog New Friends

Your dog has new friends now. That’s a great benefit of rehoming your dog. While it may hurt that you no longer have your dog with you, just know that you made the best decision.

Your Dog Will Be O.K.

Your dog will remember you, but not for a long time. As he becomes used to his new environment, the memories of you will fade. That isn’t a bad thing, though. This way he can move on happy and healthy.

You Can Get a New Dog Someday

Just because you can’t stop crying after rehoming your dog, it doesn’t mean you can get a new puppy someday. This wasn’t a good fit right now. Later, you may find yourself in a different place, which will make having a dog much easier for you.

You Did Not Fail

Many people feel as though they failed, especially new owners. Do not look at it that way at all. You did not fail. You decided it was not for you or for your pup.

You Found a New Parent

Be happy that you went through the hard work of finding a new parent for your pup. Some people drop their dogs at animal shelters. You took the time to find a special place for your pup.

Your Dog Will Have a Healthier Life

If your dog has a medical problem and you couldn’t afford to pay for treatment, finding new owners was the best decision you could have made. Now your dog can live a long healthy life.

Priorities Are Important

If you have a new baby or a new home, which doesn’t suit your dog, that’s okay. While it’s a tough decision, you’re still doing the right thing for yourself, your family, and your dog.

You’re Reducing Stress

If you struggled with your dog’s behavior (i.e. bit history or aggressive dog behavior), that’s a good reason to rehome your dog, especially if you don’t have the time to work with your dog. Stress can make life very difficult for everyone involved. By finding new people to work with your dog’s behavior, you won’t have to worry about it anymore.

Old Dogs Need More Support

Old dogs have to be rehomed sometimes because they simply need more support. If that support wasn’t possible with you, it’s a good idea to give the gift of your dog to a new family. That new family will be able to give your pet what you couldn’t give and that’s the best option for him/her.

You Will Be Happy Again

While it may seem like you’ll never recover from rehoming your dog, you will. It will take time and you’ll have to remind yourself that this was for the best many times, but eventually, you’ll be able to smile at the memories and confidently know this was the best option.

Stay Busy

A way to cope with rehoming your dog is to stay busy so you don’t dwell on your feelings. Continue your daily routine, but try to fill downtime with activities that will help you destress.

Reach Out to Friends for Support

When you can’t stop crying after rehoming your dog, call a friend to talk about it. Talking about your personal experiences with rehoming a dog can be very relieving. If you know someone who has rehomed their dog, try to reach out to that person first because he/she will understand.

Can't Stop Crying After Rehoming Your Dog

Contact a Therapist

If you don’t have friends to support you, contact a therapist. They often have people who are in your position and they know how to help you through mourning the loss of your pup and any guilt you may have about it.

Lean on Family

Family can help you get through difficult situations in your life. Lean on your family in these times of struggle – even if they are not dog people – they can still help you process your feelings and emotions.

Should You Visit Your Dog After Rehoming?

Many people who have rehomed their dog ask if they should visit their dog. The answer is no. Not only will it make it more difficult for you, but it may make the new family feel bad. Also, your dog will still remember you and that can also make him/her feel sad and confused.

A dog with separation anxiety may end up suffering the most because he/she will think you’re back and then you leave again. That could make it hard for the new dog family.

Learn More: Visits from Former Dog Owner

When You Can’t Stop Crying After Rehoming Your Dog

When you can’t stop crying after rehoming your dog, just remember that this too shall pass. You have made the right choice, so remind yourself of that often. Just because you had to rehome your dog now, it doesn’t mean you can’t have a new dog later. You made the right decision based on the current situation.

Your dog is probably loving his/her new house. We know it’s a hard thing to think about, but the love you have exhibited by rehoming your dog is a big deal. Feel good about it. You and your dog will have good lives because of what you’ve decided.

We invite you to leave a comment in the comments section below. Tell us how you feel and what made you rehome your dog. Writing out your feelings can help you feel better, and not only will you be helping yourself, but you’ll be helping others who are in your exact same situation.

FAQ About Rehoming a Dog

The following questions are commonly asked by people who rehome their dogs.

How do I stop being said after rehoming my dog?

Give yourself time to grieve. This is a loss and it will take time to learn how to live without your dog as part of your daily routine.

Do dogs feel abandoned when rehomed?

No, dogs do not feel abandoned when rehomed because they don’t understand abandonment. Your dog will likely be sad that you’re not around, but that feeling will subside with time.

How long does it take for a dog to adjust after rehoming?

The length of time it takes for a dog to adjust after rehoming varies. Most dogs are adjusted to their new family and house by 3 months.

Will my dog forget me after rehoming?

Your dog will remember you for awhile but after a while your dog will forget you. How long it takes for your dog to forget depends on how long he/she was with you.



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10 thoughts on “Can’t Stop Crying After Rehoming Your Dog”

  1. Try to keep yourself busy. This is a great tip that worked for me. You have written a detailed article. But after getting a new pet we can relieve the stress easily. Do you recommend to own the same pet such as a dog to forget the old one or switch the pet with cat?

    • Thank you for your comment Jack! My heart goes out to you. When getting a new pet, take time to decide what pet you really feel will make you happy. It really depends on the individual. My recommendation is to go to the local animal shelter and spend time with both the dogs and cats. Pay attention to the ones you’re attracted to (dogs and/or cats) and how you feel when interacting with each one. Your heart will guide you in the right direction.

  2. I had to rehome my dog because i was moving abroad and it was impossible for me to take him with me.
    I do believe that time might heal all the wounds, but even after all this time it feels like i will never be able to forgive myself. I’m incapable of getting a new dog because even though you’re saying that i didn’t fail, i do consider that I’ve failed and badly. Why ? Because if it was up to him he would never left my side ♥️
    I really wish for you all to find peace and get over what you had to do !

    • Hi, Sou! I’m so sorry for your sadness. Please know you really didn’t fail at all. You actually succeeded by finding a good home for your pup. Yes, your pup wouldn’t have left your side, but this choice wasn’t one for your pup to make – it was one for you to make – and you had to do what you had to do. You’re a good dog owner because of how sad you feel about it. If you didn’t care, then that would be worse. You can definitely get another dog when you feel up to it. You did not fail at all. Plaese know that.

  3. I recently rehomed my fur baby due to a bad breakup. I tried to hold onto my dog but my new environment wasn’t good for him. Its absolutely broken my heart, I feel so guilty for not being able to give him my all. I wish we could of tackled life together but I’m hoping he’ll be in a secure home that can give him everything he needs. I havent stopped crying since, I feel so empty and lost.

    • Oh, Harry! I know it’s so hard to deal with, but you’re an awesome dog owner for doing what was best for your pup. Someday, you’ll be in a better place where you can give a dog everything needed to be happy and healthy and you’ll understand more how good of a decision you made here. Don’t worry – you did the right thing even if it hurts like heck right now. Thank you for sharing. <3

  4. I had to rehome my dog who I had since pup and he just turned five. It’s been the hardest decision and now I can’t stop crying. I feel so much guilt that I couldn’t give him the life he deserved. I know the decision was right so that he could have a better life. I just miss him so much and the thought of not hugging him and seeing him again is breaking my heart.

    • Hi Marlene,
      I know you feel guilt for not giving him the life he deserves, but you actually did give him the life he deserved by rehoming him. I know how hard this is for you. Give yourself some love and let yourself miss him and mourn his loss in your life. Remind yourself that you’ve done something very very good for him and for the people you have Blessed with your furry friend. You’ve done a lot of good here, so now, do a lot of good for yourself by patting yourself on the back for giving him an amazing life.
      Feel free to contact us if you’d like to talk more or comment below. Others are feeling the same way as you and it’s important to have the support of others during this difficult time.
      Love, Marcie

      • I read your post and feel the same about rehiring my dog… hardest decision I’ve ever made. I can’t stop crying and feel incredibly guilty.

  5. I rehomed my fur baby almost a year ago. I feel so guilty and I can’t stop thinking about him. It was the best decision because of our very busy lives. It was not fair to keep him in the house all day due to our schedules. Not to mention potty training was horrible. He started using it on my bed, furniture and anything he could find. Even though all of this was going on, I still feel so bad and I feel like a failure.


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