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Thursday, 6 January 2011

Your care home, your pets and your personal belongings

When you're considering moving into a care home, you may be worried about what will happen to your pets, your furniture and other personal belongings. It's important to ask about a care home's policy on pets and household effects before you move in.

Before choosing a care home, you should always visit the places you're most interested in. This will give you the chance to talk to the staff and residents about your concerns.


Some care homes allow residents to bring their pets with them when they move in. It's important to ask about the care home's policy on pets before you decide to move in. If your pet is not allowed to live in the care home, ask whether visitors are allowed to bring your pet to visit you. 

The Cinnamon Trust, a national charity for older people and their pets, keeps a national register of nursing homes, care homes and sheltered housing schemes that allow pets to live on the premises. You can telephone the Cinnamon Trust on 01736 757 900.

The Society for Companion Animals provides advice and information about care homes and pet policies.

If you can't take your pet with you into the care home and you're having trouble finding a new home for it, there are several organisations that can help.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) website contains useful information about finding new homes for pets.

Furniture and personal belongings

You may be able to take some of your own furniture and other personal belongings when you move into a care home. Before you move in, it's important to find out exactly what you can and can't bring with you.

You may have large items of furniture that are not easy to move into the care home. You could:

  • sell them
  • put them in storage
  • give them to friends and family
  • ask your local authority to take them away

You could also give any unwanted belongings to a charity. Some charities will collect furniture and other possessions from your house for free.

Find out about special collections for large items locally

The rubbish and recycling department of your local council may provide a collection service for bulky items that you don't want. There may be a charge for this.  The following link will let you enter details of where you live and then take you to your local authority website where you can find out more.

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