About the Department
FAQs

Why Adopt from Us?

Wide variety of pet choices

Low adoption cost

All animal spayed/neutered

Health check for all adoptions

Help an animal in need

dogFAQ3
Are any of your animals free of charge?

No. There is an adoption fee for each animal placed into a new home from any of our animal care centers.

What does it cost to adopt an animal from one of your Animal Care Centers?

The adoption fee for a dog or puppy is about $125 and for a cat or kitten about $115. That fee will be reduced by $50 for dogs and $40 for cats if the dog or cat was already sterilized before arriving at our animal care center. We do offer discounted adoption rates for animals that have been in our care for more than 10 days. The adoption fee includes initial vaccines, a microchip including national registration, spaying and neutering fees, and a complementary veterinary medical exam at participating veterinary offices. The Department also provides post-operative pain medication for animals that have been spayed or neutered. The cost for the pain medication is $10 and is included in the cost above. The adoption fee does not include the dog or cat license fee, which must be paid, but varies depending on the City or area you live.

If I leave a deposit, will you hold an animal for me?

We do not take deposits to hold animals.

What can I do if I live out of state but want to adopt one of your animals?

We do not have a program to ship or transport animals out of state or out of the country. We suggest you contact a private rescue group who may be able to help you.

How does your adoption process work?

If you see an animal that you are interested in adopting on our website, you will need to visit the animal care center where the animal is located. If you see an animal you are interested in adopting at one of our animal care centers, you may adopt it if it is available, or place a “Commitment to Adopt” (CTA) if the animal has not yet completed its legal hold period. CTA’s must be placed in person at the animal care centers and each animal may only have one CTA. Please note that we hold all stray animals for four days, not including their day of arrival in order to give pet owners an opportunity to look for their lost pet. Once an animal’s holding period has ended, it will be made available for adoption. CTA’s may be placed on animals whose holding period is still in effect when the stray holding period has ended, it can immediately be adopted. If the animal has been surrendered to one of our animal care centers by its owners and is already sterilized, you may be able to take the animal home the same day. If the animal needs to be spayed or neutered, state law requires this surgery to be performed prior to the release of the animal. In the meantime, however, the adoption paperwork can be processed.

What is a Commitment to Adopt (CTA)?

A Commitment to Adopt (CTA) is the term the Department uses for the first person who expresses interest in adopting a specific animal. By placing a CTA, you are committing to adopt the animal once it becomes available. An animal whose owner claims it during the holding period will not be made available for adoption. You will be advised at the time you place the CTA when you will be able to pick up your new pet. Please note that we only take CTA’s in person at the animal care centers. The designated CTA will have the first opportunity to adopt the animal when it becomes available.

What is an Interested Party?

An Interested Party (IP) is the term used for individuals who are interested in adopting an animal that already has a CTA. We can take up to five IP’s per animal. The first IP to arrive at the animal care center (at Early Opening) the day the animal becomes available will be allowed to adopt the animal. If more than one IP is interested in the animal, the first IP to arrive at the animal care center on the date it becomes available shall be given the first opportunity to adopt the animal, moving down the list sequentially. If no IP’s come for the animal, the animal will be available first come, first served and will be adopted to any customer during regular hours of operation.

What is a trust deposit and how does it work?

A “Trust Deposit” is an additional fee you will pay if you adopt an animal that is unable to be spayed or neutered (due medical reasons).  Trust deposits are $40 for cats and $50 for dogs. You may use this trust deposit as payment to have the animal spayed or neutered at one of our animal care centers when the animal is ready for surgery. If you choose to have the animal spayed or neutered by your private veterinarian, the trust deposit may be reimbursed if you provide us with a certificate of sterility from your vet.

Will you refund my money if an adoption isn't working out for me?

We cannot refund your money if the adoption is not working out for you.  However, if you return the animal you may receive a credit for a future adoption.

Will you refund my money if an animal I adopted gets sick?

If the examining veterinarian determines that the animal is unhealthy or if the animal becomes ill during the first 14 days after adoption, you may return the animal to the animal care center for an exchange for another animal or for a refund of the adoption fee (other fees for services to prepare the animal for adoption are not refundable).

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