Supporting dog owners experiencing homelessness

Discover how we support dog owners experiencing homelessness or in housing crisis.

Hope project service user Paul walks his dog Blake in a park

Many homelessness services are unable to accept pets. This leaves owners experiencing homelessness with the impossible choice of having a safe place to sleep or staying with their beloved pooch. 

Through our Hope Project, we support dog owners to stay with their faithful friend. 

This includes our:

  • veterinary scheme, which provides free veterinary treatment to dogs whose owners are experiencing homelessness or in housing crisis

  • Welcoming Dogs scheme, which helps temporary accommodation providers become dog-friendly

  • online directory of dog-friendly homelessness services in the UK

  • Christmas parcel service, where we send out dog goodies to owners.

If you're experiencing homelessness, we'll do everything we can to keep you and your dog together. Find out how we can help.

Help and support for dog owners experiencing homelessness

We know that many people experiencing homelessness rely on their dogs for warmth, comfort and companionship.

That’s why we’re helping people in crisis stay with their dogs. Part of that involves working with homelessness services, but we also directly help owners.

Veterinary help

Our Hope Project veterinary scheme is open to all dog owners experiencing homelessness or in housing crisis.

We cover the cost of all preventative treatments for your dog (neutering, microchipping, vaccinations, flea and worming treatments) as well as most other essential or emergency procedures.

The vet scheme runs in 115 towns and cities across the UK, through homelessness services.

If you need help with vet costs and aren’t in touch with a relevant service, you can refer yourself directly

Guide to dog-friendly services

We also help dog owners by helping them find dog-friendly homelessness services such as hostels, across the UK.

Help and support for homelessness services

If you run, or work for, a homelessness service, we can help you support dog owners in a variety of ways.

Welcoming Dogs

Through our Welcoming Dogs scheme we'll help you support residents and their pooches. We’ll provide:

  • help to create a bespoke pet policy and pet-owner agreement
  • useful resources on referrals and risk assessments
  • free vet care for any dog staying in the temporary accommodation
  • a starter pack of items to welcome dogs (such as collars and leads, dog beds, bowls, and enrichment toys)
  • ongoing support

When you become a Welcoming Dogs endorsed service, we’ll add you to our online directory 

Help with veterinary costs

The Hope Project veterinary scheme is open to all dog owners experiencing homelessness or in housing crisis. It covers the cost of preventative treatments and most essential and emergency procedures for their dog.

If you’re a homelessness service provider, you can sign up to make online referrals to the scheme.

Give hope to dog owners experiencing homelessness

Help us support dog owners so they don't have to choose between a safe place to sleep and their dog. Donate today and keep dog owners and their faithful friend together.

Meet some of the people and dogs we’ve helped

Louisa and Matilda

Dog owner Louisa outside on a path crouching down to pet her dog Matilda

In 2020, Louisa lost her job and her accommodation because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Then her dog Matilda developed problems in her back legs and needed costly surgery. It was an expense that Louisa couldn’t afford.

Louisa looked for help for her and Matilda – there wasn't much available. Luckily, she discovered our Hope Project and gave us a call. We registered Matilda on our vet scheme so that she could access free vet care.

Louisa says: “Matilda’s always been there for me. She understands me, knows when I’m upset and comforts me when I need it. It’s such a burden off my shoulders to be able to rely on the Hope Project for her health. The project has been a massive help.”

Paul and Blake

Dog owner Paul sitting on a park bench with his dog Blake

Paul and his pooch Blake were staying in a dog-friendly hostel until the pandemic hit. Then they had to move into a hotel as part of the government’s ‘Everyone In’ scheme. We’ve been supporting the pair through our vet scheme and Christmas parcels.

Paul says: “I have found living in the hotel room very difficult and isolating. I genuinely don’t think I would have been able to cope without Blake. He is the only constant in my life – he’s my best friend and he perks me up every day. I don’t get lonely because I have him.

“It’s a huge relief knowing that if Blake gets ill, I won’t need to worry about paying the bills. I wouldn’t be able to afford it without you! It’s also been lovely to receive parcels with food, a winter coat and other dog treats.”

Supporting owners to find Lets with Pets
How we help dog owners
Supporting owners to find Lets with Pets
Considering giving up your dog?
Considering giving up your dog?
How we help
How we help

Contact the Hope team

For more information and contact details, visit the Dogs Trust Hope Project website 

Call us on 020 7833 7611