Does anyone have an adoption retention or adoption follow up program? What do you do? We are using MPA for fosters currently, but we are looking to create an adoption retention program. Do you do classes (pre and/or post adoption)? Emails? Phone calls? Post Adoption behavior/trainihng consults? All of the above? What are your protocols? If you have started a program like this do you find that it increases your returns when you reach out? (i.e. "Thank goodness you called. I have been meaning to get in touch with you. I need to return this animal..."
**Adoptable dog pic just because.**
Actually we do email followups with people. It actually has been very rewarding in terms of catching issues early on and helping to keep the animal in the home. The added bonus is we get many wonderful stories and updated photos as well as the pets new name. Great way to continue the relationship with adopters.
Helping Paws Animal Shelter
Our adopter engagement strategy looks like this:
E-mail on day 1 (includes basic resources and how to get in contact with us)
E-mail 1-2 weeks later*
E-mail 2-3 weeks later
E-mail 1 year later
All our puppies (under 6 months) come with a 6 week training course that is included in the adoption fee.
All other dogs can sign up for our recommended basic training and get a 20% off the costs.
We have personal behavior consults available for adopters that are really struggling. We determine if this is necessary after they let us know at one of those 4 touch points that they are struggling.
*We will call daily (1-3 days or more if it makes sense) for those hard to place crazy dogs or cats.
I wish we could do follow-ups via phone but we have found most people don't answer their phone anymore and then the back and forth is hard to manage so we transitioned to only e-mail. I would say reaching out doesn't increase returns because it gives you an opportunity to educate or provide resources that they may not have thought of already. What we did do though was remove questions from our follow-up that were specific to illness or behaviors or returning because that did seem to lead us into difficult situations. It's more open-ended and that seems to be working well for us. I am wondering from your question if you are concerned with too many returns. Another thing we implemented is simply asking adopters why they think they may return and then addressing those concerns/fears or providing education. I hope that helps!
wow, this sounds great! what a great support system you have in place
We have an adoption session all adopters have to attend. The cat sessions are a group session and the dog sessions are individual. We talk about how to introduce your new pet to your home and to any other animals you may have, how to be sure you don't have any litterbox problems, how to be sure your cat scratches appropriately and nutrition which is very important to cats today. In the dog session we talk about how to introduce your new dog to your home and any other animals you may have, positive training, crate training, housetraining, separation anxiety problems, importance of exercise, how to have a good relationship with kids. Everyone gets to take their animal home after the session. We have had a lot of positive comments and we have helped prevent many problems for our adopters. Each adopter does get a behavior booklet to refer to. It is an integral part of our adoption process. If you are interested in seeing our booklets, I would be glad to send them to you.
That would be wonderful. Thank you! My email is: firstname.lastname@example.org
I would love to see those pertaining too dogs Pat, if you don't mind sharing...thank you so much!!. email@example.com
I’d love to see your booklets. firstname.lastname@example.org
I know this is an older post, but if it is possible, I would be interested in seeing your booklet.
We have a Cat Retention Program. We also have trained volunteers to do follow up calls/emails. If they come across any concerns, the info is sent to the Cat Retention team. When someone wants to surrender a cat due to behavioral issues, their info is forwarded to us as well. I have a certificate in Feline Training and Behavior, and have completed the HSUS Cat Retention program online. I have 1 volunteer that I have trained to help me.
We have a lot of adopters who aren't really "internet people" so we only do follow up calls. We call about a month after the adoption. Each adopter also gets individualized counseling at the time of the adoption (about a half hour session) and they're sent home with a resource packet that goes over many of the things discussed and common problems/questions. They are also given a follow up sheet at the time of adoption, which we ask that adopters drop off or mail back to us to let us know how things are going. We get a lot of these back with photos, too, which is great! In addition, many adopters post follow ups on our Facebook page, or send us follow up emails.