COVID-19 & New Zealand Chihuahua Rescue ("NZCR")

Thank you to everyone who has thought about New Zealand Chihuahua Rescue and the dogs in our care at this very difficult time. We are so overwhelmed with the loving messages of support and concern. At a time like this, we are so grateful to have so many genuinely caring, loyal supporters of our cause and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

NZCR has applied to the Ministry for Primary Industries ("MPI") for confirmation of classification as an "essential service" involved in animal welfare, so we can continue to assist New Zealand with rehabilitation and re-homing dogs throughout the lock-down period.


With the impending lock-down, several people have reached out to confirm availability to foster while working from home. We appreciate the offer,  however, we do need to make it clear that fosters need to be able to commit to fostering until their foster dog is adopted. This could be for a couple months, six months, or a year... we can never truly know. So, we need fosters who are able to commit to a dogs care and provide long term stability. We also generally ask for no full time workers as fosters. Our dogs are rescues who may have "quirks" and we need people present in the home on a prolonged daily basis, to assess them and implement training.

Our fosters also need to be available during the week to take the dogs to and from appointments  (ie. vets, physio) This is a vital aspect of fostering and needs to be continued for the duration of the foster term, this will be beyond the lock-down period when many return to work.

We are concerned that accepting short term fosters (who will return to full-time work after lock-down) would mean that there will be a flood of dogs urgently needing new fosters at the end of lock-down. We are also concerned about the impact this would have on our rescue dogs . It can be difficult for them adjusting to one family for a month or so and then having to re-adjust to a new foster, or sudden full-time working routine when they go back to work. 

We do however, always need reliable, stable, long term fosters in our database and would love to have those of you who can commit to this! If you meet the requirements noted above at the "foster" tab on this website, please do forward your application - we would love to hear from you!


You do not need to struggle alone - if you wish to re-home your Chihuahua, Chihuahua-cross or small/toy breed dog  (under 5kg), please contact us - we will help you. We provide a free, friendly, confidential and non-judgemental service to anyone who requires assistance.

Are you still taking in surrenders during lock-down?

Yes, our Trustees will be receiving in surrenders and exercising the upmost care in doing so. The virus can live on a dogs fur, so we will collect dogs in protective gear and ensure they are bathed, flead and wormed before entering a fosters home. 

We ask that you remove any collars from the dog and do not provide any non-essential blankets, bedding, collars, harnesses or other items. We can re-supply all of these. Any vet books or  favorite items can be provided - our team will collect these in a sealed plastic bag.

What's the process if I need to surrender my dog or know someone who needs to?

Please contact us via email and provide your phone number. A Trustee will then call you to organize contact-less collection of the dog(s). Please also print out the surrender form under "re-homing" in the website tab above, fill this out, scan and email it to us if possible. If you do not have a printer, please let our team member know during the call and we will courier the form to you. This form confirms all of the information we need to know about the dog to assist.

How will they be collected?

We will call you to discuss how dogs will be transported to us here in Christchurch (if  you are located elsewhere) or for collection locally. Please ensure you advise us by phone if you are unwell, or in self-isolation due to contact with an infected person. We need to ensure our team are as safe as possible, but the bottom line is we will help you. 

For further details - the rest of the information under our "re-homing tab" remains applicable.


All adoption processes are suspended immediately. Our dogs will not be moved from foster care during lock-down. Meet and greets will not be conducted during lock-down. Please do not email us asking to meet dogs, we will not be conducting any adoptions until it is safe to do so.

If you wish to adopt from us, you are still welcome to apply. If interested in any of our dogs, please see the adoptions tab, fill out the application form and attach photos of your property. Please also provide landlord consent if you are renting.

For further details - the rest of the information under our "adoption" tab remains applicable.


Thank you for thinking of volunteering with NZCR, we appreciate your support. However, as we do not have a centre and all of our dogs are with foster carers, we do not require any volunteers at present. 


Are you still sending out WOOF orders?

Yes, you can still order the dog food as it has been deemed an "essential" item. Shipping is dependent on our courier company, Pass the Parcel (Post Haste). 

Can I purchase items from TradeMe?

You may still purchase and pay by Ping for these items, however we cannot send them out yet. Sorry,  any 'non-essential' items will be delayed. All doggy clothing and other misc items purchased via our TradeMe will be packed and sent out once the lock-down is over. Many couriers are declining to send any items that are not "essential". There is also the risk of transmitting the virus from people handling parcels to consider.

Again, we thank you all very much for thinking of our dogs and we promise they are happy, loved and well-looked after, unaware that the world is full of chaos at present. Please keep safe, only make necessary trips outside and enjoy this time with your furry and human loved ones.

Created: 25.03.2020 @ 3.45pm

Updated: 26.03.2020 @ 1.10pm

How Can You Help Us During Lock Down?

Thankfully, we are pleased to report that all of the dogs in our care at present have loving, stable and reliable foster homes to hunker down in!  All of our dogs will remain with their fosters until the end of the lock down period. We will not be conducting adoptions. We really hate to ask, but if you are in a position to be able to donate and are looking for a way to make an impact and assist us, we would be eternally grateful for your support!


Without being able to run fundraising events, or fund-raise by selling items freely online, we essentially have no means to raise any funds and our dogs will still need items during this lock-down period!  

Our biggest concern is money - How do we keep operating at a time like this? How do we provide all the essentials for our dogs? How do we fund new ones coming into care? we need to to ensure that we have enough food, flea and worming, medications and anything else our dogs need. Plus enough funds for their essential vet care during this time and after. 

We will be inquiring with the Government as to whether we qualify for their subsidy. However, as we are a relatively new charity that essentially runs "from hand to mouth" our accounts last year at this time were low also! The only difference being back then we had the ability to raise our own funds via events or selling items in a much more free world via fundraising routes now cut off by the nationwide pandemic.



We really hate to ask, but if you are in a position to be able to donate, any funds would be so gratefully received! If you are looking for a way to make an impact and assist us, please donate.

As a registered NZ charity, we are able issue receipts for all donations over $5.00.  This will ensure you recieve 33% of your donation back, from the IRD. Simply email us with your name, account name, amount donated and postal address and we will email it back to you.

Donate by bank deposit to our Westpac New Zealand Chihuahua Rescue Trust Account details:


Donate by Credit or Debit Card here:

GiveALittle Page:

Paypal Link:

If you are not in a position to donate, please share our plight on your social media in the hopes it will spread our message further.


Due to the fact the virus can be spread on paper, plastic and fabric, to limit the risk, at present we are NOT accepting personal donations of food, collars, bedding etc.  We are trying to minimize the risk to our team members wherever possible.

We are happy to take items shipped directly from suppliers, or pet stores, however. Bedding, beds, donations of Orijen Original and/or ACANA small breed kibble are what we require most. (Sorry to be so picky! Many of our dogs come in with allergies or weight issues so we often have them on Orijen/ACANA or prescription-only foods)