Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Please complete a "Report Animal Cruelty" form here. Please note that all information supplied is completely confidential.

Unfortunately the shelter still remains closed to the public, volunteers and corporate groups. We do not have a date for when we will open again. We will update our Social Media platforms with information when available

Please visit DSPCA Lost & Found Pets Facebook page where you can post a photo and details. You must also email the details to [email protected]

We suggest the you bring the pet to a local vet to check for a microchip. If this is not possible or there is no microchip present then please follow the following 2 simple steps.

1. Visit DSPCA Lost & Found Pets Facebook page where you can post a photo and details.

2. You must also email the details to [email protected]

Are main priority is helping the sick, injured and cruelly treated animals. We can help families who can not care for their pet anymore. There is a form that must be completed which you can find on this page of our website here. Please note that there is a waiting list for owner surrenders and an assessment will be carried out prior to taking in your pet.

Please read our adoption process here. You can view all the pets available for adoption here

We can receive up to 30+ interest for anyone cat/dog on the website. When you submitted your "Register Your Interest" a message was displayed for you to read explaining that if you do not hear from the adoptions team it does not mean that you were not successful it means that others had applied before you. Also if you have applied for a cat/dog and do not meet with the required criteria for that specific cat/dog, ie. adult only home, experienced owner, can not live with another cat/dog, your application will not be sent to the adoptions team. If you miss out on a cat/dog you applied for you are not automatically added to a waiting list. You must apply again if another suitable cat/dog becomes available for adoption on the website.

Thank you for considering becoming a DSPCA foster. Please click here for information and how to register.

The DSPCA run a Mobile Vet Clinic which is available to those in receipt of social welfare. For more information click here.

Stray cats living in your garden/premises are mostly feral cats. Feral cats are cats that cannot be touched or handled by people. Unfortunately, if the cats are feral we can not take them for rehoming as they are not suitable to be in a home environment.

Please note It is not permitted to bring feral cats to another location and release them as this is classed as “abandonment” under Irish legislation. The most productive thing to do for feral cats is to have them neutered as this will prevent further increase in the local feral cat population.

In order to have adult cats (over six months old) neutered at the DSPCA please read the following information.

Getting feral cats neutered at the DSPCA

We run a Trap Neuter Release (TNR) Programme for feral cats at the DSPCA. Please email [email protected] to arrange to collect a cat trap. A cash deposit of 100 is required when collecting the trap. This will be returned to you when the cat trap has been returned to us. Once you have the cat trapped you can call (01) 499 4703 to make an appointment to bring the cat into our shelter in Rathfarnham for the neutering surgery. The cost for neutering a cat is €25 Euro.


If the kittens are tame (they can be handled by humans) and they are seven weeks old or older, we can collect them from any part of Dublin. We do have a waiting list to take in kittens. Please email your details to [email protected] and someone will contact you when we have room to take the kittens in.

Taming feral kittens

If the kittens are feral and you would like to try to tame them you will need to start feeding them. Start off by feeding them while you stay in the garden and every day get closer to them. Eventually, you should be able to hold the food bowl while they feed from it. At this point, you should make a fake hand (a glove on a stick) and start to stroke them while they are feeding. When our shelter calls you to say they can collect the kittens they will need to be in a box/carrier so the kittens will need to trust you in order for this to be successful.

Stray Cats

We can help rehome stray cats once they are not feral (you can pet, touch and handle the cat). You can complete a Stray Cat Surrender Form HERE

Most of the time foxes will sleep in the garden and seem to be injured as they don’t move too much however if you walk towards the fox they will often jump up and run off. If the fox cannot run away when approached please contact our call centre on (01) 499 4700 or email [email protected]

As with many other wild animals foxes live among us in Dublin including the city centre and have done so for many years. Generally, the DSPCA do not call out to remove them unless they are sick or injured.

Unfortunately, as the fox is a wild animal if he/she is sick/injured we are only able to help when the animal is not mobile or is contained in a small enclosed area, if he/she can run away we simply will not be able to catch it.

If you find an abandoned fox cub unable to leave an enclosed area with no mother present, try to help it on its way by placing a chair or something similar against the wall but if the cub is still trapped please call us.

Please note if a vixen has had her cubs in your garden she will move them on when the cubs are bigger, she will not stay in your garden long-term. Foxes do not attack humans however we advise not to get too close as this will frighten her, especially when protecting her cubs. Do not feed her or her cubs as this will encourage her closer to your house and do not leave out rubbish bags that she or her cubs can pull apart.

When the cubs are bigger they will play (like puppies) in your garden when you are not around, this can sometimes result in the cubs chewing up children’s toys like small footballs and other plastic/soft toys so be mindful of this and put the toys away after use.

Between April and September, it is common to find birds on the ground as this is "Fledgling Season". Fledging season is when young birds are learning to fly. Some young birds can almost be the same size as some adult birds. The first thing to do is check to see if there is any injury on the bird such as blood/cuts. Check for damage to the legs (if the bird can not stand) or damage to the wings such as a wing hanging down. You can throw a towel over the bird and pick it up this way. If there are no signs of injury but the bird still can not fly, it may be a young bird that has recently left the nest.

The best thing to do with a fledgling bird is to leave it on the ground, the parents are more than likely it watching and waiting for it up in a tree. The bird can take some hours before it will fly depending on the breed. Do not feed the bird or place it on a height, simply leave it where you found it. Keep an eye out for cats or other birds that may harm the young bird and chase them away if they try to attack it. The bird will take off by itself when the time is right. Outside of the Fledgling Season most birds found on the ground are probably injured so place the injured bird in a box and contact our shelter [email protected] or your local vet.

Sometimes during nesting season, a young bird can fall out of a nest too soon, they are called nestlings. A nestling is usually still quite bald, they cannot really stand upright and the eyes may be closed, this bird will need assistance so please take a picture and email [email protected] Nestling seagulls look different, they are white/black spots or grey and are very fluffy with webbed feet, if you find one of these on the ground again take a picture and email [email protected] for advice (watch out for adults overhead as they can be very protective).

If you have seen horse that you are concerned about, please email [email protected] with the exact location, time, date and any photos.

Thank you for thinking of us. Here are a list of items that we can accept into the shelter.

We can accept: Blankets, towels, teddies, newspapers, cat toys, dog toys, vet bedding. Please make sure all items are washed and clean.

*Note - We can not accept teddies with beading used as a filler as they are a choking hazard for cats/dogs. 

Unfortunately we can not accept: duvets, pillows, cushions, sheets, duvet covers, pillows cases, old couch cushions, sleeping bags or old carpet. 

Pet Food: Unfortunately we can not accept cat or dog food. All the cats and dogs in the shelter are on specific food and a sudden change in their diet can cause diarrhoea.

Your local County Council are responsible for the removal of deceased animals on council land however if the animal is on private land there is no service provided by the council.

Please email inf[email protected] and we will do our best to update you. Unfortunately our system may not have updates for injured birds.

The DSPCA have a wonderful Pet Boarding facility, click here for information.

The DSPCA have a great training academy to help dogs of all ages. Click here for information.

During Covid-19 and with restrictions in place with are running various online workshops instead. Workshops are hosted via Zoom and are suitable for ages 6 to 12 years but all of the family can join in. Read more here.