They say a dog is for life, not just for Christmas. There are dozens of adorable rescue pets – not just dogs, but cats, rabbits and much more – in Hertfordshire looking for their forever homes in time for Christmas.

The RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre, near Potters Bar, and the Blue Cross rehoming centre in Kimpton, Hertfordshire, currently have a number of rescue pets available for rehoming.

There's even a cat called Santa just waiting for a loving new owner this Christmas.

While the festive season may be a time to join together with family and friends, many animals will be waiting patiently to find their new family in a rescue centre.

Here's 15 rescue pets in Hertfordshire animal shelters looking for a home this winter.

1. Santa the cat

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Santa is a three-year-old black cat who has lived all his life as a stray. He came into the charity's care after a kind member of the public spotted that he was lame on his hind legs.

He is now back to full health but, having lived on the streets all his life, he can be a little fearful of people so is looking for a kind and experienced home.

"The way the environment is set up is vital for a cat like Santa to help him feel safe and happy," said a spokesperson for the RSPCA.

"A new owner must be willing to help Santa as much as possible by giving him his own space and providing lots of enrichment."

Once he has settled in, Santa will need access to a private garden. His home must be away from busy roads and railway lines – the quieter the area the better, as he is easily frightened.

The RSPCA spokesperson added: "Santa has started responding well to people he knows and is even enjoying a little attention and some strokes now.

"But it is a long process to gain his trust, so a patient and understanding owner is very important."

2 & 3. Zeb and Gemma

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Zeb and Gemma are two golden oldie Jack Russell Terriers who are looking for a home together. Zeb is 12 years old and Gemma is 15.

They came into the care of the RSPCA after their owner became unwell and was unable to look after them.

This is understandably a confusing time for the senior dogs as the only home they have ever known has now suddenly gone.

They can be wary of new people and it does take some time for them to learn to trust a new person but once they do, they are the most adorable dogs, says the RSPCA.

They will need an adult-only home with a private and secure garden with a minimum of 4ft high fences. They would like to be the only pets in the house and they will need a calm household with a patient owner.

"Even though they are older dogs, they have so much life in them," said a spokesperson for the RSPCA.

"You will soon realise that age is just a number, especially when you see them play!

"They are an adorable duo and very loving and loyal once they know you. They really deserve a second chance in their twilight years."

4. Dino

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Dino is a 16-year-old Jack Russell Terrier who came in with Zeb and Gemma but sadly didn’t get on very well with them, so will need to be rehomed on his own.

Dino could live with a family with sensible, older children aged 14 or older.

He is an affectionate dog who loves attention and, although he can be a little shy at first, he soon comes running over for fuss.

"He is a true snuggle bunny and loves to sit on your lap for a cuddle," said the RSPCA spokesperson.

"He would benefit from further training and socialisation with other dogs as he can get a little upset around other pooches."

Due to this, the centre feels he would be best suited as the only animal in the home so he can get the one-on-one attention he deserves.

He would also need his own private secure garden where he can have some time running off lead.

"Dino is an absolute sweetheart and you are sure to fall in love with him as soon as you see him," added the spokesperson.

5. Pedro

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Pedro is a three-year-old black and white cat who came into the RSPCA’s care as his original owner sadly passed away.

He was then rehomed but sadly did not get along with the neighbouring cats, so was returned to the centre and is looking for his forever home once more.

"Pedro can be quite anxious but he is a very sweet-natured boy who is looking for a calm household without lots of coming and going to enable him to feel safe and settled," said the RSPCA Southridge spokesperson.

"He is very affectionate but can be startled easily so needs a patient and understanding owner."

Pedro would prefer that there are no other cats in the home. He will also need a home with a family who don’t have children under the age of 16.

6. Simba

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Simba is a seven-year-old black and white cat who has had an unsettled few months after his owners could no longer care for him as their circumstances sadly changed.

The RSPCA said: "Simba has shown some unpredictable behaviour in the past, but with a little help we are hoping he will be happy in a kind and loving home.

"He is friendly and does enjoy a fuss with his human companions, however he does not like to be overwhelmed or given too much attention so interactions need to be little and often, usually when he lets you know that he wants your time!"

He particularly loves climbing up high on his scratch towers, observing the world around him.

Simba will need plenty of toys and enrichment to keep him occupied in his new home and to help with his behaviour. He will also need his own room to settle into before being given full access to the home.

He will need access to a private secure garden via a catflap, away from immediate dangers such as railway lines and busy roads.

The RSPCA say he would be best suited to a rural location with plenty of greenery around him. Simba must go to an adult-only household with no other cats or dogs.

"If you have room in your heart and home for this lovely big boy then please get in touch," said the RSPCA spokesperson.

7 & 8. Fozzie and Scooter

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Rabbits Scooter and Fozzie were born to a stray lionhead mum who was found on a building site with four babies. She was left with only two babies after two very sadly died.

The father is expected to be a wild rabbit, therefore Scooter and Fozzie are naturally very skittish and nervous.

Scooter and Fozzie have not had a great start to life and are not used to being handled so they will need an experienced adult home with someone who is prepared to spend a lot of time getting them used to human interaction.

The staff at the centre have started the process and the rabbits are slowly building up their trust.

Fozzie is quite comfortable sitting around and watching the world go by, and he is always the first to run to the food bowl. Scooter is more nervous so will need a lot more time to adjust to his new home life.

They need a patient, calm owner who can give them space of their own, but will also spend time sitting with them and giving them gentle daily interaction.

The RSPCA spokesperson said: "We believe they will be very rewarding companions, but their new owner must respect that they will never be cuddly pets."

9. Sonny

RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre

Sonny is a 12-year-old black and white golden oldie cat. He is on the lookout for his forever home after his previous owner sadly passed away.

Despite being a middle-aged boy, Sonny is young at heart and can be very playful and lively.

He loves chasing after a ping pong ball and you will often see him whizzing around his pen when he's got a burst of energy.

When playtime is over, Sonny loves nothing more than a snooze in the sun, either on his chair or on the scratch tower.

"He's fine to be left to his own devices during the day if you are out at work; and we're sure he would greet you with a chirpy meow and a rub around your legs when you get home," said the RSPCA spokesperson.

Sonny has been used to a quiet life, so is looking for a home with adults or a family with older children around 15 years or older.

He would prefer not to live with a dog but could live with a friendly female cat. Sonny has previously lived as an indoor cat, so it is vital that his new home is in a quiet area, away from busy roads and railway lines.

10-15. Hugo (and his 5 brothers)

Blue Cross rehoming centre in Kimpton, Hertfordshire

Mouse Hugo and his five brothers – Dan, Liam, David, Toby and Teddy – are looking for a forever home.

They were found abandoned at just three days old. Originally from Blue Cross' Devon centre, they were then transferred to the Hertfordshire centre in Kimpton.

A Blue Cross spokesperson said: "They are a very good group of boys, who are very close and we would love to find them a home where they can either stick together as a group of six; or be rehomed in smaller groups.

"This band of brothers are confident to be handled, but are still very quick!

"They enjoy playing in their pop-up play pen, climbing up and down branches and running through their tunnels.

"Most days you will normally find them all fast together in their nest in a mouse bundle."

Visit to find out more information or if you are interested in rehoming them.

How to adopt one of the RSPCA rescue pets

If you think you can give any of the pets at Southridge a loving home before Christmas, contact RSPCA Southridge Animal Centre in Hertfordshire on or call 0300 123 0704.

It will cost the RSPCA £4,117 to run an animal centre for one day this winter.

To join the Christmas Rescue and help rescuers be there for the animals in need, visit