How to Adopt a Pet from AWS

Thank you for choosing the Animal Welfare Society as a place to adopt a pet! We look forward to helping to match you with your new best friend and supporting you throughout the adoption process. Adopters are welcome to visit our Adoption Center without a scheduled appointment to meet adoptable pets including dogs, cats, birds and small animals. We are open 7 days a week, from 10 am – 3:30 pm. 

All adoptions are on a first come, first served basis. Our adoption pages are REAL TIME, so as soon as an animal is adopted, it will “disappear” from the website.

What to expect when you visit

 When you arrive at the adoption center, check in with our team to start the adoption process, which starts by filling out a short questionnaire. Then, you’ll meet with an adoption counselor for a one-on-one conversation about pet preferences, lifestyle, family dynamics and more. With this information, our adoption counselor will suggest pets that may be a good match. At that time, you’ll be able to meet the pet(s) and spend time with them. You’ll be able to get to know your potential new pet and ask your adoption counselor any questions you might have.

 If you decide you’re ready to adopt one of the pets you’ve met, it’ll be time to finalize the adoption! We ask that you take your new pet home with you after you’ve completed your adoption. Finalizing the adoption includes discussing detailed information about your new pet (including your pet’s medical records, which will be emailed to you shortly after adoption), signing an adoption contract and paying an adoption fee. Then you and your new pet start your new life together! 

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I meet a pet that is in foster care?
Call ahead! We place as many pets as we can in foster care so they can thrive in a home-like setting while awaiting adoption. On our website these pets are marked as *IN FOSTER*. Give us a call to arrange a time for you to meet the pet at AWS.

What if I’m not ready to bring a pet home after my visit?
That’s ok! We understand that bringing a pet home is a big decision and we want you to feel certain. You can come back multiple times to visit with a pet, if they are still available for adoption (Do keep in mind that this takes extra planning if the pet is in foster care). Because we want pets to start their new journey in a home as soon as possible,  we do not place pets on hold.

Should my current pets come in to meet my potential new pet?
We recommend bringing dogs to meet potential new dog additions to your family. This is not a requirement, and our adoption counselors can help give guidance about dog introductions. If you are unsure about whether you should bring your resident dog, give us a call in advance to chat.

Why do you charge adoption fees?
Adoption fees support the care each animal receives at AWS and the greater services we provide our community. Without adoption fees, AWS would not be able to achieve our mission to serve as the safety net for lost and homeless pets and to provide access to affordable services and resources necessary for long term well-being, so pets and their families stay together and thrive.

Can I stop by to look at or play with the animals, even if I’m not adopting?
While we are grateful for the many people who stop by to visit our animals, we want to make the experience meaningful for everyone involved, including the pets. We are a Fear-Free shelter, which means we ensure all the animals in our care feel safe and secure. We follow guidelines to reduce feelings of stress, anxiety or fear created by the pet’s living environment. We do this by reducing foot traffic, keeping the shelter calm and quiet and maintaining a consistent schedule for each pet. Thus, for the most meaningful experience, we encourage individuals looking to engage directly with our pets, but who are not looking to adopt, to consider our volunteer and foster opportunities! If you have a group of individuals, our Visiting Pets program might be a great fit for your group. For student and school groups, please contact our youth programs coordinator.

Adoption questions? Contact us.