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Adoption Policies and Process

Considering adoption?  Please carefully read and consider our policies regarding placement.  We work to ensure that each dog we serve is placed in the best adoptive home for its age, size, physical and emotional needs.  Policies regarding placement have been developed through consultation with veterinarians, behaviorists, trainers and the legal community.  We reserve the right to decline any adoption that we feel is not the best placement for the dog being considered.

Our adoption policies are summarized below, and our full policies are available here.

Basics

We adopt to persons over 21 years of age who own or rent their home, apartment, or condominium, and who are financially capable of handling a veterinary emergency.  We do not place dogs in dormitory situations.

A home visit by a CARE volunteer is a required component of the application process.

We ask for, and strongly consider, a veterinary reference. Speaking with your veterinarian, we must be told that:​​​​

  • You otherwise maintain your animals' health as recommended by your veterinarian.

  • You spay or neuter your animals.

  • You keep your animals' vaccines and veterinary-prescribed heartworm prevention up-to-date.

  • You maintain a safe and healthy environment for your pets.


For the safety of our dogs, we do not place our dogs in homes with animals more than twice their size, and we do not place our dogs in homes with preschool aged children (under 5 years of age).  ​We will only adopt to non-smoking homes.

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Fences and Homes

We prefer homes with constructed fenced yards, and will require constructed fenced yards for most adoptions.  Any decision to require a constructed fenced yard for a potential adoption is in C.A.R.E.'s sole discretion.

We do not adopt to homes with electric fences. Please read the following articles for more insight into this decision:

A true story: Police officer shoots dog behind invisible fence

Are electric fences safe and ethical

Puppies

We consider our puppies to be dogs of less than 12 months of age.


The emotional well being of puppies is best developed when people are consistently able to socialize and train them. We do not place our puppies in homes to be left alone 8+ hours each day.


We do not place puppies in homes with larger dogs or preschool-aged children for the safety of the puppy and the child.

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Adoption Process

EVERY adoption starts with a visit to an adoption stand.  We are a 100% volunteer group and without a public shelter.  A calendar of adoption stands is on the home page of this web site.  Applications are NOT available online, and will only be offered to you after you have met the dog(s) you are interested in adopting.  We do NOT pre-approve adopters and we do NOT keep adoption applications on file.  Our rescue believes that an adoption should only be considered when a connection has been made between a potential adopter and a specific dog.

 

Applications are offered to potential adopters who meet our requirements for adoption (see Adoption Policies).  We prefer our potential adopters to complete applications at the stand and leave them with the adoption coordinator as our process begins immediately following the close of the stand each week.

 

The first step of consideration begins with veterinary reference checks.  Veterinarians help us to establish that potential adopters are responsible pet owners.  We ask all potential adopters to contact their veterinary offices ahead of our call to let the office staff know they are applying to adopt a dog, and to give permission for the staff to share information.  If we are unable to collect appropriate information, or if the veterinary office shares information that does not align with our adoption requirements, we may disqualify the application at this point.

 

Applicants with good veterinary references are contacted to schedule a home visit.  This visit allows our rescue the opportunity to establish that the potential home is a safe place for the dog, and it allows adopters the opportunity to see the dog in their home.  Many adoptions take place at the conclusion of the home visit.

 

Our goal is to complete adoptions within the week of the adoption stand.  We do not hold dogs for adopters.  Rescue space is very important to dogs in shelters at risk of euthanasia.  We encourage people not to adopt just before a vacation or major life change.  Please be mindful of your new pet’s need to establish its home and comfort with you.