Dog Adoption

Notice: Pet adoptions remain closed during Phase 1 of reopening (effective June 1, 2020). Visitors will not be able to view or visit animals, but all animals in the shelter will continue to receive appropriate care. Animals who we are unable to reunite with an owner may be transferred to one of our partner shelters for adoption. Please click the link below for a list of other area shelters who may be offering pets for adoption.

Other area shelters may be offering pets for adoption.

If you do adopt a dog and live in Washington County, be sure to license your dog.

SUCCEEDING WITH YOUR ADOPTED DOG

We have a booklet that will help you get started off right with your new dog. We recommend prospective adopters read our Dog Adoption Packet ahead of time. It has plenty of tips about dog care, training, and helping your dog transition into his happy new life.

BEFORE YOU DECIDE TO ADOPT

It’s not always the right time in your life to adopt a dog. Consider the cost and responsibility before you take a dog home. Sometimes even a dog-lover needs to wait until a different time to bring home a dog.

Here are some issues to consider before you adopt:

Commitment: Most dogs live about 10 to 18 years. Are you and your family prepared to make this long commitment to the animal you are now adopting? Pet ownership also includes responsibilities for training, veterinary care and other things necessary for the pet to lead a comfortable, happy life.

Lifestyle: Dogs are very time-consuming pets. They need exercise and attention every single day. It’s important for you to select an animal with a personality, exercise needs, and grooming requirements that fit your family's lifestyle.

Behavior: Adoptable animals may have previous life histories that weren’t happy. Not all dogs always received adequate socialization as puppies. Some dogs may go through a phase of chewing, digging, barking or house soiling during the time that they are adjusting to their new home. All of these behaviors are correctable, but take a commitment from you.

Expense: Pet ownership comes with some built-in expenses. Consider the following expenses and how they could affect your household budget:

  • Food
  • Veterinary care
  • License (for dogs in Washington County)
  • Grooming
  • Supplies (collar and leash, pet beds, crate, brushes, toys, food and water dishes)
  • Obedience classes (most dogs of any age will benefit from classes)

Health: Even generally healthy animals may have expensive veterinary bills during their lifetimes.

Your Home: Before you adopt a dog, think about where you live. If you’re renting, does your property manager allow pets? Is there a pet deposit? Is there a limit on size or number of pets? Think about how you’ll exercise a dog and give it potty breaks. Do you have a fenced yard, or will you need to walk your dog every time it needs to go outside? 

Children/other Household Members/Other Pets: Not every dog is a great match for young children. Some dogs that may be too rambunctious or too shy to be a good pet for a young family. Similarly, if there is a frail elderly or disabled family member, be sure to look for a gentle dog.

Ask yourself if any of your family members are allergic to pets, are afraid of animals, or just don’t enjoy being with animals. We recommend that all family members meet the dog before you decide to adopt.

Remember, adopting a pet is a major life decision. Make it carefully and deliberately.