The Adoption Process

All of the animals are described on the Adoptable sub-pages. We have Adoptable Dogs and Adoptable Cats. After some of the animals’ names, you will see (In Foster). This designation indicates that the animal is being housed in a home and not at the shelter.

If you are interested in an animal at the shelter, come out and visit him/her. We are open from 10am-5pm Friday-Sunday and from 12-5pm on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday.  On Wednesdays we are closed to the public in order to do deeper cleaning and to allow our animals, who receive their spay or neuter on Tuesdays, a day to recover.

After walking through the kennels with the adoptable dogs, please ask a staff member to take the dog out to a meet and greet area for you.  You can get to know cats and kittens in the Cat Room.  Please do not play with the kittens in the kitten hallway.  If you are considering adopting a dog or puppy and have other dogs at home, we encourage you to bring them to the shelter (perhaps on a second visit) to meet the potential new family member.  We have a large fenced-in meet and greet area in the front of the SPCA adoption building where these meetings can take place.  SPCA staff and volunteers can assist you with the meet and greet.

If all goes well and you decide to adopt the animal, you proceed to the front desk to fill out an application.  The purpose of the application is to make sure the potential adopter understands the responsibilities of pet ownership and that other animals in the household have been properly cared for.  A few animals require a home visit due to breed restrictions or special needs but most shelter animals do not. If you are a renter, you will need to have proof that you allowed to have the particular dog you want to adopt.  It is suggested that you bring a copy of your lease or have your landlord’s phone number available. If you already have an animal, proof of vaccinations and heartworm preventative (dogs) for your current animal will be required. The staff can check with your current veterinarian or you can bring a copy of the animal’s vaccine record. If you are coming in to adopt on Saturday or Sunday it will be very important to bring vet records since most vets are closed on the weekend.

The SPCA accepts cash and credit/debit cards for the adoption fee but does not accept checks.  The adoption fees vary, depending on the age and size of the dog.  Most adult dogs are $80 (some of the senior dogs are $40).  Small breed dogs and puppies under six months old are $150 and up. Our adoption fees  do not cover the financial investment that the SPCA has put into the animal so feel free to add an additional donation.  Besides the unconditional love of a precious dog or cat (priceless!), what do you get for your adoption fee?

All of our animals:

  • are spayed or neutered
  • have a microchip
  • are up to date on all vaccinations
  • are entitled to a free vet visit
  • receive 45 days of free pet insurance


What if the dog or cat has (in foster) next to his or her name?

This means that the animal lives in a foster home, and not at the shelter. The foster parent’s phone number and/or e-mail address is listed at the end of each animal’s description. Please contact the foster parents to set up a time when it is mutually convenient to meet. If the meeting goes well, you will need to fill out an application. If you have animals currently in your home, we need to know whether your pet is spayed/neutered, up-to-date on vaccinations, heart worm tested yearly, and receiving heart worm and flea and tick preventative. If your current animals are not altered, we want to know why.  Because one of the main goals of the SPCA is to reduce overpopulation, and because altered animals are usually less aggressive, we usually insist that all animals be altered.  We do, however, want to work with potential adopters since our goal is to find loving homes for as many animals as possible so we try to be flexible.

If the application is acceptable, we arrange a home visit. We want to meet all of your family members and your pets.  Of course, we need to see how your family pets react to our foster dog. We want to meet your cats and all of the other resident pets in your household. We are not looking at your housekeeping or your decorating, we are looking that our foster dog will be safe in your home and that all family members are on board to adopt. Be advised that all of our foster dogs are Inside Dogs. The shelter does  not adopt out to families who intend to keep their animals outside only.

Sometimes we have more than one application on a foster dog. The foster family has to make a decision on which family best suits their dog. Often all of the prospective homes would be good homes, but the foster has the right to decide which family would be the best match. They may suggest to an interested party another dog in foster or a dog at the shelter which would be better suited.  In all situations, we are looking out for the best interests of our dogs.

When you are approved as an adopter, you have the option of adopting immediately or you may “try out” the dog for a maximum of seven days. We want everyone to be happy with the choice. If you find, after the trial period, that the foster dog does not suit you and your situation, no problem. The foster dog rejoins his foster family. After the maximum seven days, the animal must be adopted or returned to the foster family.