Animal Adoption League

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Animal Adoption League
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Adopting a Pet

The right pet in the right home is a truly happy combination.You can make a Difference!
Thousands of pets become lost, abandoned and homeless everyday. Most are eventually sheltered on an interim basis, awaiting the good fortune of an adoptive home. The vast majority of these homeless animals would make someone a great pet. When people tell you that shelter animals are not good pets, remind them that the original Lassie as well as Morris and Benji were all shelter animals before they gained stardom through a second chance with a caring home. Homeless animals can't become excellent pets if someone doesn't give them that second chance. Perhaps that lucky (and smart) someone is you!

Is it right for me?
Tips on bringing your new pet home

Adopting A New Friend from the Animal Adoption League
Potential owners are screened very thoroughly by the Animal Adoption League. They are required to fill out an application and provide Vet references along with information on the animals living conditions. A volunteer will call the Vet to be sure that potential owners have properly cared for their pets in the past and that all current pets have been spayed or neutered and are up-to-date on vaccinations.

Adoption Requirements
1) No animal will ever be adopted to outside only homes.
2) Inside/outside homes for dogs must have an existing fenced yard with shade and a dog house.
3) A home visit will be performed prior to adoption. Promises to fence in a yard are not accepted.
4) All Applications must be approved by the Adoption Board.
5) A contract must be signed at the time of the adoption.

Click here for Adoption Forms.

Be a responsible pet owner. Careful research and planning are essential, since being a responsible pet owner requires more than just providing adequate food, water and shelter. Potential pet owners should agree with these points before bringing a dog or cat home.

  • Animals are not disposable! Animals are not articles of clothing to be thrown out once they are no longer in style. They are capable of bonding deeply with their families. Adopting a pet means making a life-long commitment, which can easily be 10-15 years for dogs and up to 20 years for a cat.
  • Don't banish your dog to the backyard or put your cat outdoors. A dog that is constantly left alone can develop behavior problems. Dogs thrive on several hours of exercise and companionship every day. Cats who live outside face dangers from other animals and people, and may prey on wildlife. One adult in the home should be designated as the primary caretaker so that the pet's daily needs, such as food and water, do not become lost in the shuffle of busy schedules.
  • Protect your pet's health and safety. Owning a dog or cat costs more than the adoption fee. Remember to include basic and emergency veterinary care, toys, supplies, and food. Spaying and neutering is also essential for the animal's long-term health and happiness, while providing the animal with proper identification will ensure his or her safety.
  • Choose the right pet for your home. Dogs and cats are not right for every household. Problems such as allergies, apartment restrictions, or moving issues should be discovered before adopting a new pet. Large dogs may be too strong or active for small children. Small pets may be too delicate for children.
  • Obedience train your dog, and understand cat behavior. Basic training helps dog owners communicate better with their pets and strengthens the human-animal bond. Research shows that people who train their dogs are more likely to keep them. Cats behave differently than dogs; negative behavior can communicate displeasure or be the sign of a medical problem. Learn what is appropriate behavior and what can be changed with training, if needed.
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Is It Right For Me? Adapted from an article on

Pet adoption or even pet ownership is not right for every person. Some people are too busy to adequately care for a pet. Some families have no experience with pets and might unintentionally neglect a pet or put a pet in harm's way. Other people have an entirely wrong attitude about owning a pet. They want a fashion accessory or a belonging about which to brag and show off.

Adopting a pet should be a serious step not taken impulsively. Just because a puppy or a kitten is cute and seems to enjoy being held by you is not enough reason to think they will be right for you or you right for them. Before you adopt anything, carefully look at yourself and your lifestyle. After you have done that, decide just how a pet could fit into that lifestyle with you.

When you adopt a pet you also adopt a number of pet-related responsibilities.
Some of these are:

  • Giving your adopted pet a good, safe place to live
  • Giving your adopted pet good medical care
  • Giving your adopted pet good food to eat and good water to drink - everyday
  • Giving your pet (if it is a dog) good training
  • Spaying or neutering your adopted pet to cut down on the future numbers of adoptable pets
  • Giving your adopted the love, affection, and attention it needs to be a pet rather than just some animal that happens to be where you are

The fee you pay the animal facility or rescue organization will certainly not be the last money you will have to spend on the health, comfort, and well being of your pet. One reason that adoption may not be right for you involves your budget. If you don't have enough money to care for yourself and your family, don't make things worse by bringing a pet into your life.

If you travel a great deal, perhaps an adopted pet isn't right for you at this time. Pets need consistent care. Simply putting out a week's supply of food and water is not adequate care for your pet. When you own a companion animal you must take that pet into consideration whenever you plan your life's activities. If you are too busy to take good care of your pet, save yourself some trouble and your pet a lot of misery and don't adopt a pet!

If you are the only person in your family that really wants an adopted pet, perhaps you should not adopt a pet right now. Your family will need to be actively involved in the care of any pet you own. Simply bringing a pet home from the Shelter without consulting with your family is a selfish thing to do and may get the pet off to a bad start.

If you are a student about to go off to college, don't saddle your parents with the care and responsibility of an adopted pet. At college you may live somewhere pets are not allowed. If they are allowed, you may have roommates that don't want to share their lives with someone else's pet. Your schedule may not allow you to provide adequate care for your adopted pet,

If you are in poor health, your decision to adopt a pet may have to be modified somewhat. A large and active dog and a frail person aren't a good match. A dog will need regular walks outside or a backyard area. If your health won't allow you to care for your adopted pet then you and the pet will suffer. Wait until you are in better health before you add to your responsibilities.

When a pet is adopted it will bond with and come to love its new owner. This bond is like the love a child has for its parents. If you aren't sure that you can keep a pet once you have adopted it, don't adopt it to begin with. Suppose your parents had decided to return you to the maternity ward when you were a child, how would that have made you feel?

You may be a perfect candidate to adopt a pet. You may have wanted a cat or dog, kitten or puppy for a long time. You may have prepared your home and lifestyle for getting a pet. You may have ample time to care for a pet. You may have read some books on pet care or talked with a pet expert about the kind of pet for you. You may have enough money to give the right pet the right care.

If all these elements are in place you are probably ready, willing, and able to adopt just the right pet for you. There is still one more step for you to consider.

Give some careful (and realistic) thought to just what you want in a pet. Consider the kind of environment into which your adoptive pet will come. If you and your family are active and boisterous, don't pick a pet that is laid back and wouldn't enjoy a lively home. If you enjoy quiet evenings at home don't get an overly exuberant pet. Consider you energy levels and the things you like to do and find a pet that can fit into these things.

The right pet in the right home is a truly happy combination.

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Tips on bringing your new pet home

Congratulations on your new family member! But what do you need to do next??

First, make sure you have all the supplies you will need for your new pet.
- Food, bowls, leash and collar, toys, and a bed to call their own.
- An Id tag. Make sure you have this ready so that you can attach this to your pet's collar immediately.

Next, you will probably need to take your new pet in for a complete vet check-up. This will help ensure they are healthy and happy, and then can be given any needed vaccinations.

Expect a period of adjustment for you new pet. They do not understand what is happening to them, and will need to learn about their new situation. Be patient and give them the love and support they need. Make sure they are eating and drinking. Also watch for diarrhea or frequent urination that can result from nervousness. This situation should clear up after a few days, but if not, contact your veterinarian.

If you have other pets, introduce them gradually. If possible, expose them to items with the other animal's scent, so that it becomes familiar to them before meeting the animal. Also, separate them in the beginning when you leave, until you are sure that they can peacefully co-exist.

   The Animal Adoption League is a non-profit organization