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Adoption and Trading

Xweetok Coming To New Home Have you been feeling like something -- or more accurately, someone -- is missing from your Neofamily? Is there a particular type of pet you'd just love to own? Of course, if you already have a name picked out, you can create a Neopet yourself or get one from the Pound, and paint or morph him or her yourself. However, you should be aware that this isn't the only way of getting your hands on your dream pet! Other Neopians can also help you out in putting together your perfect family of pets. This article will give you all the essential facts on the busy and acronym-filled world of adoption and Neopet trading!

Quick links to the pound: Adopt | Transfer | Abandon



Transferring Overview

Transfers via the Neopian Pound

Whether you're wanting to adopt or trade a pet, you'll need to use the Pound's transfer system. You can find more information about that in our handy Neopian Pound guide, but for now, a quick overview to get you up and running!

To transfer a pet, you'll need to choose the central door at the Pound (the one with the Robot Hissi behind it). Click the button beneath the pet you want to send, and enter the name of his or her new owner (and your PIN, if you have one). You'll need to pay the Hissi 1000 Neopoints for the transfer; the user receiving your pet will have to pay an amount based on the pet's stats (usually under 500 NP).

If the two of you are swapping pets, you'll need to go through an additional step where you indicate which pet you want to receive, and you'll each need to pay both types of fee. Swapping pets formally rather than just using two separate transfers is a good idea if there's a pet going each way; it means neither of you needs an extra empty slot to move the pets around, and it makes sure nobody can receive a pet and then go back on a promise to trade.

Once you click to transfer, the receiver will get an event informing him or her that there is a pet waiting to be accepted. One click of the Accept button, and the pet will be in his or her new home safe and sound :)

Sending a Pet

Account Age Restrictions

Pets cannot be moved between accounts in any way until they are at least a week old (168 hours).

Players whose accounts are less than 4 months old have limited capacity to receive painted and trained Neopets. They may only adopt pets of Level 1 or Level 2, and even then the only colours of pets they can adopt are Blue, Brown, Checkered, Glowing, Green, Invisible, Orange, Pink, Purple, Red, Shadow, Silver, Skunk, Speckled, Split, White and Yellow. Pets that are Level 3 or higher, or that are not painted one of these colours, may not be adopted on or transferred to these young accounts.

In addition, these younger accounts may not adopt or receive any Limited Edition pet: Chomby, Cybunny, Draik, Hissi, Jetsam, Kiko, Koi, Krawk, Lutari, Poogle, or Tonu.

Accounts that are more than 4 months old may adopt any pet regardless of level, paint colour, or species, with the exception of Lutari, which can not be transferred under any circumstances.

Pound Transfers

If you've been reading up about adoption already, you might notice that some older guides refer to a different method of "transferring" -- dropping a pet at the disownment desk at the Pound and arranging for a specific owner to pick him or her up. Before safe transfers were invented, this was the only way of sending a pet to a new owner. It's a lot riskier than a real transfer, however; once a pet is in the Pound, anyone can see -- and adopt -- him or her, and if someone else gets there before your friend does, there's no guarantee you'll get the pet back.

Dr. Death
I'm not a taxi service, you know.

Using the official transfer system is also the only way of making sure a pet's clothes go with him or her. There is no way to keep NC items on a pet, but if s/he is transferred, all his/her Neopoint wearables will be sent along with him/her, as well as any paintbrush clothing that matches his/her current colour. Paintbrush clothing that doesn't match will be left behind even if the pet is currently wearing it, so it's not possible to trade or adopt a cross-painted pet.

What is "Pet Trading"?

In the most basic terms, trading is when one Neopet is swapped for another. Unlike item trading, which takes place at the Mystery Island Trading Post, there's no official system for advertising pets you would like to trade; finding someone who owns the Neopet of your dreams, and likes one of your pets enough to swap, has to be done through posts on the Neopian Pound Neoboard (or on sites like our Jellyneo Forums).

Another big difference between item trading and Neopet trading is that, while someone on the Trading Post might be prepared to offer a whole set of codestones in exchange for a paintbrush or map piece, you can't make an uneven trade where pets are involved. Every trade has to be 1:1 -- that is, one pet sent and one pet received by each player. It's also against the rules to trade a Neopet for anything but another Neopet; you can't offer another player Neopoints or items alongside your pet to try and get him or her to accept.

Tonu with Price Stickers
So get that price tag off your Tonu before TNT notice!

If you see your dream pet "up for trade" ("UFT"), but you don't own the Neopet the owner wants, don't give up just yet! If you have enough space to create a Neopet, you're allowed to make one with whatever name the person you're trading with would like, and then paint or morph him/her to get the desired colour and species before trading. This is called a custom. However, what's not allowed is taking an already existing pet from the trader, repainting him/her and sending him/her back as your side of the deal. Effectively, this is the same as swapping a Neopet for a paintbrush or morphing potion, and is against the rules.

Every pet means something different to his or her owner, and you may well consider your Starry Shoyru to be much more important to you than that Faerie Aisha you just zapped with the Lab Ray -- and there's nothing wrong with that! It's very much how Neopets should be. However, out in the world of the Pound Chat, it's important to know that some pets are considered more desirable than others, usually in terms of species, colour and name. While everyone has his or her own individual preferences, there's a certain amount of general consensus about what is more desirable overall; you'll have to look a lot harder to find someone who'll trade his or her pretty, attractively-named Neopet for your Starry Chia than you will if you've got a Plushie Cybunny to swap.

Starry Chia Getting AngryPlushie Cybunny
Stealing all the owners' attention? Moi?

Name, colour and species are three separate considerations, but they often stack; a well-named pet who also happens to belong to a popular species will be considered more desirable than one with the exact same name but a species that has fewer fans. Some traders will also take Battledome stats and/or a pet's age into account.

Figuring out a fair trade can be exceedingly complicated at times, especially since Neopets' unique names mean that every situation is slightly different. The most important thing is that both people are happy, of course, but if you want to make sure you're not being tricked (or offending someone by under-offering), you can always ask around the boards or JN forums for advice on what would be considered a fair trade regarding the pets in question.

What is "Up For Adoption"?

Sometimes, the owner of a Neopet isn't interested in getting another pet in exchange, but just wants to make sure his or her pet finds a good home. This is often the case for people who are quitting Neopets or taking a break, but there's also a number of users in Neopia (called foster parents) who dedicate themselves to finding this type of placement for random pets taken from the Pound. The first option in that situation is to try rehoming the pet with a friend or a member of your guild, but this often isn't possible (especially if you're a foster parent whose friends each already have at least one pet they got from you!) So the next step is to look to strangers to find a new home for your pet.

Like traders, people adopting out pets can often be found on the Neopian Pound board, advertising their Neopets. Unlike traders, they don't take "offers" -- rather, they're waiting for you to introduce yourself to them. In some cases, this can take the form of a simple Neomail stating that you're interested in the pet. Often, especially when adopting out a pet that many people want and that would be easy to retrade, the owner prefers a more extensive introduction to you and your ideas for the pet -- this is generally known as an "application".

Dreamy Zafara with Letter
Look what my applicants wrote about me!

An application can either be sent by Neomail (possibly more than one message will be needed, as there is a character limit) or copied and pasted onto one of your pets' homepages.

Every owner or foster parent will have his or her own ideas of what to look for in an application, but if you're planning to apply for a pet, the most important thing is to answer a few basic questions:

  • Who are you? Remember, the person you're sending the application to has probably never met you before. He or she would like to know your name, as well as a little bit about your experience on Neopets. What are your interests?
  • Are you an active player? Nobody likes to think of their much-loved pet sitting on a neglected account. Are you a dedicated Neopets player who'll keep coming back?
  • Why are you interested in this pet? Why are you applying for this Faerie Lupe (or Darigan Aisha, or Island Skeith) rather than simply creating your own? What attracts you to the pet?
  • What are your plans? If you were selected as the pet's owner, what would you do with him or her? Do you have any ideas in mind?

Try to keep your writing clear and accurate when sending an application; have a friend check over your spelling and grammar if you're not confident. It won't help you get the pet of your dreams if the foster parent can't figure out what you're trying to say.

Once the applications for a pet have been read by the owner or foster parent, he or she will probably ask each applicant questions to learn more about him or her. Eventually, one applicant will be chosen as the pet's new owner, and the pet will be transferred. It's often a very hard decision; the same considerations about desirability apply in the case of adoption as well, and coveted pets may get dozens or hundreds of applications. So if you were turned down on this occasion, don't be too disheartened! There's no way of giving a pet to four (or ten, or thirty) very nice people at once, after all.

Ripped Plushie
Letting this happen even to Plushie Neopets is not recommended.

Once you've adopted a pet, the foster parent has no official claim over him or her. If you later change your mind about how you want to paint or morph the pet, or someday want to give him or her to a friend, you can't be reported to TNT for going back on the things you once said you planned to do. However, it's very bad manners to outright lie to a foster parent about your plans for a pet just because you think the fabricated version sounds more attractive. It may not be against the rules, but it certainly won't get you a good reputation.

Know the Language

The Pound Chat is a hectic place, and many traders and foster parents are stuck advertising their Neopets day in and day out. It's no surprise that a range of abbreviations has developed that make advertising trades and foster pets quicker and more efficient. However, if you're new to all this, the jumble of capital letters used in these Neoboard posts can seem a bit confusing at first. Luckily, you've got this guide to help you out!

About A Pet's Name

These abbreviations all indicate what you can expect to see in a pet's name. To some extent, the line between categories is a bit blurred -- attractiveness of a name is in the eye of the beholder, after all -- but we've tried to give some typical ideas here to help you.

  • RN stands for Real Name, and is possibly the most coveted category of all among owners who are choosy about names. RNs are names that are used for humans in the real world, like "Elizabeth" and "Ronaldo". Note that very unusual spelling variations (like "Elyzzebeth") are generally not treated as "proper" Real Names.
  • RW stands for Real Word, and means that the Neopet's name could be found in a dictionary in real life. Misspellings of real words are not considered to count as part of this category, although they may still be attractive enough to count as WN. Real Words from foreign languages are in far less demand than English ones. The simpler a word, the more desirable people tend to find it; "Launch" would be preferred to "Relaunching".
  • VWN stands for Very Well-Named and includes names that are easily pronounceable, contain no superfluous extra letters, and are not too long. "Proper" (i.e. first-letter) capitalisation can also help to nudge a pet's name into this category.
  • WN stands for Well-Named. Names that aren't quite short or elegant enough to be considered VWN, but are still attractive and pronounceable, will tend to fall into this category.
  • DN stands for Decently-Named. Slightly awkward or irregularly capitalised names tend to hover around this category, as well as names formed by combining several words. Many people believe a name with underscores or decorative letters can still count as DN, but numbers are definitely not allowed.
  • BN stands for Badly-Named. Names that contain random jumbles of letters to the point where it's not clear how they'd be pronounced, or names cluttered with extra letters, underscores and the occasional number, tend to fall into this category.
  • VBN stands for Very Badly-Named. Names with strings of numbers attached, that are obviously a joke or insult to the pet or his/her owner, or that drastically misspell something in a way that appears unfortunate rather than funny, are placed in this category. VBNs are generally the hardest pets to foster.
  • L is often used to stand for "letters". So a "4L" name would be a name with only four letters, which is very short.
  • X and # are not abbreviations, but are used instead of letters and numbers when talking about trade offers hypothetically. A capital X is used in place of any capital letter; a lowercase x represents any lowercase letter, and a # represents any number. Their most common use is for asking people's opinion when choosing between two or more pets: "Which would you rather have, a Faerie Ogrin with the name format xxxx_Xxxx or a Robot Kiko named Xxxxxx#?"

Imperial Examiner
You said your name was WHAT, exactly?

About a Pet's Species and Colour

Traders and foster parents with multiple pets to advertise may use these abbreviations to ensure they can fit all of them into the very small space of a Neoboard subject line.

  • Basic means a pet that is yellow, red, blue or green.
  • RB and RG refer to a Royalboy or Royalgirl pet (there is just one Royal Paint Brush, but its effects differ by pet gender).
  • A Werelupe in this context is not a legendary monster, but just a Hallowe'en Lupe.
  • OG stands for Orange Grundo.
  • IQ has nothing to do with intelligence, confusingly; it stands for Island Quiggle.
  • A bunny or Cy is, fairly logically, a Cybunny.
  • Peo in this context refers not to the Petpet of that name, but to a Peophin.
  • UC refers to pets that are still drawn in a certain old art style from before Year Nine. Some people find the older designs of certain pets more attractive, and may be willing to go further to get one than to get the updated version. In the past, DUCK was used to refer to the three rarest types of Neopet during that time - Draik, UC, and Krawk. Since then, however, Krawks and Draiks have become much easier to obtain thanks to the Forgotten Shore. The term has been replaced by PDRK, which refers to the two most sought after UC species and colors - Plushie, Draik, Royal, and Krawk.


Nonono, I said I wanted a DUCK with good Battledome stats, not a *Battle Duck*.

About Adoption and Trading Methods

  • UFA stands for Up For Adoption.
  • UFQA stands for Up For Quick Adoption, indicating that the owner is in a hurry to find a home for his/her pet and will accept a very simple expression of interest. It's still a good idea to read the advert thoroughly to find out exactly what he or she expects.
  • UFT stands for Up For Trade.
  • OTB stands for Offer To Beat, and is used to show what a pets a trader has already been offered in exchange for his or her pet.
  • S stands for Seeking, and is used to create the equivalent of a wishlist (as in "S: a Chocolate Cybunny".)

Watch Out!

Neopia would be a much nicer place if all its citizens could be trusted. Unfortunately, there's always a small number of malicious players spoiling things for the rest of us. :( Here are some things to keep an eye out for if you want to stay safe.

Shady Skeith

  • Asking for, or offering, any kind of fee for a foster pet is not only a scam but against the rules. This includes sending items or Neopoints to try and influence a foster parent to consider your application more favourably.
  • Similarly, including items or Neopoints in a pet-trading offer is also against the rules. (And before you ask, yes, TNT know perfectly well what you're doing if you "just happen" to be sending the stranger with your dream Neopet a "random gift" at the same time as the trade. Just don't do it.)
  • Before you respond to an advert for a UFA or UFT Neopet, make sure that the pet's owner actually does intend to adopt out or trade that pet! While some people do ask their friends to help advertise, a few malicious users will claim to own a pet that actually has nothing to do with them, just to wind up other users or harass the real owner. If in doubt, a polite Neomail to the account the pet is on can't hurt.
  • If you don't see anything to indicate that a particular pet is UFA or UFT, it's not generally considered good manners to ask. If you're really and truly interested in that specific pet (for instance, because his or her name has a particular sentimental significance to you), Neomail once and very politely ask what the situation is, but don't get your hopes up too high -- most owners aren't interested in trading. Never ask for a pet that is labelled as "not UFA/UFT".
  • While a foster parent can give you some ideas on what he or she would like to see in an application, he or she can't oblige you to present it in a particular form. Insisting on having an application on a nicely-presented petpage, for instance, is against the rules; owners are obliged to accept applications in Neomail form as well. There are still a few foster parents out there who don't know this rule or forget it from time to time, though, so if someone tries to insist on a specific format, don't be afraid to set him or her straight.
  • If a Neopet is lost in a "Pound transfer" (i.e. not using the official transfer system), it's okay to Neomail the person who adopted him/her and ask for the pet back. However, offering or demanding any kind of reward for the pet's return is not allowed. Also, some unscrupulous users will pretend to be a lost pet's owner to try and get a free Neopet; if you're at all suspicious of someone who's claiming to have "lost" a pet you've just picked up from the Pound, don't hesitate to ask for details only the owner would know, like the original species of a zapped Petpet or what books the Neopet has read. You are under no obligation to return the pet if you don't believe the claim.

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This article was written by: Dream & Suzuka