Monroe County Animal League
Adoption Program
Spay/Neuter Program
Puppy Program
Available for Adoption
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  Adoption Program
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Online Adoption Application
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A lot of our pets available for adoption are listed on All animals are current on shots (DHLPP and rabies) and spayed or neutered. If a pet is too young to be altered or, for any reason, has not yet been altered, a spay/neuter contract, defining a surgery date, is required prior to adoption. An adoption contract is required for all pets.

We don't always have all of our available pets posted (for various reasons) on the internet. If you don't see someone that interests you, e-mail or call to let us know what you're looking for. We keep a running list of people looking to adopt, and of people looking to place pets. We may be able to match you up with your forever friend even if he/she isn't posted on the internet.

How Rescue Works

Monroe County Animal League, Inc. is a non-profit organization operated entirely by volunteers. We rely solely on our volunteers and donations to continue our rescue work. We are dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and re-homing of unwanted, neglected and abandoned pets.

Where do the pets come from?

Most of the pets available for adoption have been taken in as a stray. Often times they are found by a MCAL member, sometimes they are picked up by the county and are destined for death. Some are owner surrenders (due to relocation, divorce, illness, and death). Additionally, we receive calls on our hotline about strays. Residents often work with us and "Adopt-a-stay" (paying some of the costs to give the required shots, spay/neuter, etc.) Sometimes they are able to care for a stray until a foster home becomes available. Sadly, all of the animals that find their way to MCAL are homeless for one reason or another.

Why are there pets that need to be rescued?

Because there are not enough pet responsible people! Pets need to be spayed and neutered as early as four months of age! Please be a responsible pet owner. If you already have pets have them spayed/neutered!

Can we get a puppy?

Most of our puppies are lucky to participate in our Puppy Program. On occasion we have breeds that are not accepted and we'll place these puppies locally. Generally however, we don't adopt puppies locally.

Available Pets

The majority of pets that come into rescue are over one year old - some are even senior citizens! The advantages to adopting an adolescent or older pet are numerous; often a slightly older dog is already housetrained, it is past the "eating the furniture" stage, it has calmed down and is generally easier to adapt to a new home. Particularly if you have children, an older puppy or young adult is less likely to nip at the children with needle-sharp puppy teeth! Contrary to do not need a puppy to grow up and bond with your child! Mature pets adapt very well and are, often times, better suited for homes with small/young children.

Adopting a senior pet is also a rewarding experience! They are usually well trained and are "love-sponges", meaning that they are very receptive to any and all affection that is offered to them. It is almost as though they know that you've made an extra commitment in adopting an older pet, so they want to shower you with love for their remaining years!

How do I go about adopting?

Our adoption application is available by mail, e-mail, can be submitted online, or may be printed by clicking here. The application must be fully completed or it will be rejected. One of our volunteers will review the application, conduct reference checks and talk with the potential adopter(s). If the application is approved, a home visit is scheduled as appropriate. If the home check goes well and the family is approved for adoption, an appointment will be set to meet dog(s).

You'll also have the opportunity to talk with the pets foster parents to find out about temperament, if the pet gets along well with other dogs, cats or children, etc. We encourage you to come visit the pet prior to adoption and spend some time with the pet prior to adoption. If you have children or other pets in the household, bring them along for introductions too! Sometimes, we bring the dog to the home visit. Don't hesitate to ask questions about the pet that you want to adopt!

How long does it take?

Our goal is to place the right pet in the right "forever" home. Sometimes we don't have exactly the right pet available for the adoptive family, so the adoption process can take some time. If we rush to place a pet and it doesn't fit into the family, we've made a mistake. We'd rather take a little additional time and do things correctly the first time rather than take the same pet back into rescue and start the process all over again. If you have specific requirements as to color, ear type, etc., it will probably take longer to find your pet.

How much does it cost?

Adoption costs vary for every pet. The requested adoption fee will be based on costs incurred while in our care. These costs include medical expenses (spay/neuter, heartworm test, DHLPP shots, worming, health certificate when required, etc.), food, toys, shampoo, flea/tick preventative, heartworm preventative, trips to the vet office (gas), laundering of blankets and beds, etc. Additionally, extraordinary costs for extreme medical situations (amputation, malnourished, Parvo, etc.) and consideration for breed, size, and temperament will be factors in determining an adoption fee.

In addition to the financial costs, the cost of time is also important to our process. MCAL volunteers don't ask for money to cover the love they share, the housing of pets in their homes, the time spent screening applicants and/or doing home visits, etc. Please know that donations of greater amounts are always appreciated! Every penny of the adoption fee is used to support our efforts for the next animal that comes along.

What if we can't keep our rescue pet?

We do our best to place our pets in "forever homes" but when you adopt a pet from us you sign a contract which states that MCAL must be given first option of bringing the pet back into our care.

Can I breed my pet?

No. Our goal is to help unwanted pets find new "forever" homes - not to breed more. All pets adopted from us are already spayed/neutered or adopted out with a contract indicating that this must be done by a certain date. It is our mission to help find homes for as many pets as we possibly can and it would undermine our entire endeavor to add to the population explosion by allowing rescue animals to be bred.

Giving up your pet

Our goal is to assist you in finding a way to keep your beloved pet, however if no solution can be found, we are here to assist you in finding your pet a new home. Because there are so many animals in danger of being euthanized if they're picked up within County limits, our foster homes are usually overloaded. We ask you to help us by continuing to house the dog until a forever home can be located. This can takes weeks and, often times, months! If that's impossible for you to do, we may be able to refer you to other rescue groups.

Owner surrender fee

Before surrendering your pet MCAL asks that you bring your pet up to date on vaccinations (DHLPP (7 in 1), intranasal Bordatella & Rabies), perform a heart worm test, and have your dog spayed or neutered. Upon proof of the above, we require a $50 owner surrender fee to take your pet into our program.

If an immediate relinquish is required and can be arranged, MCAL will take the pet without the above being performed for an owner surrender fee of $150.

The above owner surrender fees apply to Monroe County residents. If you are outside of Monroe County the fees are $75 and $175 respectively.

If you contact us to surrender your dog, please be prepared to honestly answer questions about your dog so we can make the transition from your home to a foster home or permanent home easier for your dog. A surrender contract is required.


If you are a Monroe County resident and adopt a stray found in Monroe County, MCAL will provide a free spay/neuter certificate. Adoptions require a minimum donation of $35 and a signed contact. The adoption program is open to dogs and cats.

This program is extended in an effort to reduce the unwanted pet population in Monroe County. Each time someone adopts-a-stray MCAL loses money (surgery costs can vary from $50 - $200 depending on size). It is our hope to gain from this process by reducing the number of pets that are able to reproduce.

Has a stray adopted you? Do the responsible thing...adopt the animal and have it spayed/neutered. Help break the cycle of unwanted pets.