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The Shelter Pet Project


Learn About Pet Adoption

Pet Adoption Questions

Are all animal shelters the same?

There are three kinds of adoption organizations: municipal animal shelters, private humane societies and SPCAs and rescue organizations. The first two are “brick and mortar” facilities; rescue groups are volunteer organizations that care for the pets in their homes.

What does it cost to adopt from a shelter or rescue?

Generally speaking, fees range between $25 and $250. Sometimes pets are free if there is a special promotion going on; occasionally they will cost more.

How long does the adoption process take?

The adoption process can take minutes, more than an hour or even longer. It all depends on the type of organization and the adoption policies of that organization.



Find helpful information on health, behavior, training and other dog care issues.


Find helpful information on health, behavior, training and other cat care issues.


Find helpful information on how to search for a pet and a shelter.

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Adoption FAQs

I’ve found a pet I’m interested in. Now what?
Congratulations! Your next step is to contact the organization listed on the pet's page on our site or on Petfinder. If the pet… Read More
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