Adopt a Dog
Due to COVID-19, all adoptions will be done by appointment only.
If you are interested in adopting an animal from HSC, please complete the application located at the bottom of each animal’s profile found at petango.com/HSC to have your adoption appointment scheduled by our staff. We will only schedule appointments by application to ensure that each interested party is seen in order of submission. A team member will reach out to you within 48 hours of your application being submitted. Must be 18 or older to submit an adoption application.
Applications will be used only to help streamline appointments and minimize exposure between members of the community. We will continue our practice of open adoptions and will not be instituting interviews or home-visits.
Thank you to our generous September sponsor, Skiptown CLT ! Click their logo to learn more about their new facility coming to South End!
We know how exciting it is to bring a new family member into your home! Just as you would prep your home for a new child, we encourage you to approach adopting a pet in the same manner. The key to helping your new animal make a successful adjustment to your home is being prepared. It can take anywhere from two days to several weeks for you and your pet to adjust to each other so be patient and reach out if you have any questions or need additional resources.
The following tips can help ensure a smooth transition for both you and your pet. Preparing your home
Prepare the things your dog will need when you bring them home. We recommend the following items:
- Leash and collar- We have leash, collars, and harnesses available for purchase at the shelter.
- Food and water bowls
- Age-appropriate food- You will receive a sample bag of food Hill’s Science Diet food. This is the food we feed all animals in the shelter and the sample bag will help you slowly transition your new pet to the diet of your choice
- Some toys – We have lots of toys available for a small monetary donation!
- Yummy treats for training
- And don’t forget to order an identification tag right away.
Establish house rules
Work out your dog-care regimen in advance among the human members of your household.
- Who will walk the dog?
- Who will feed them?
- Will they be allowed on the couch, or won’t they?
- Where will they sleep at night?
- Are there any rooms in the house that are off-limits?
Plan the arrival
Try to arrange the arrival of your new dog when you can be home for a few days. Get to know each other and spend some quality time together.
Prepare for housetraining
Many of the animals at the shelter are not house-trained. Patience, lots of potty breaks, and positive reinforcement will be required to successfully teach your new dog appropriate bathroom etiquette. Be consistent, and maintain a routine. For additional information regarding housetraining please see our post-adoption tips and tricks page.
Ensure all pets are healthy
Animal shelters take in animals with widely varying and unknown backgrounds, some of whom may have never been previously vaccinated. Inevitably, despite the best efforts of our staff, viruses can be spread and may occasionally go home with adopted animals. If you already have dogs or cats at home, make sure they are up-to-date on their vaccines. It is best to give your new dog a few days to decompress away from the resident dog. Utilize this time to monitor your new pet for any signs of illness and follow up immediately with your private veterinarian if new symptoms arise.
The First Weeks
Give them a crate
Dogs instinctively like to den, a crate can serve as their own private space. Your dog’s crate should be large enough to allow your dog to stand up, turn around, and sit comfortably in a normal posture. Make it comfy by providing bedding and toys. In addition, place your dog’s food bowl immediately inside the crate with the crate door open during feeding time. This will create a positive association with the crate.
Crates should always be a positive and safe space. Do not use the crate as a punishment and only crate your dog when it is necessary. Extensive amounts of time spent in a crate can ultimately cause anxiety and stress which should be avoided.
Crates are a vital tool in training your pet. In addition, it provides a safe space for your dog when you are not home to supervise them avoiding unwanted property damage or consumption of inappropriate items. If a crate isn’t an option, consider some sort of confinement to a dog-proofed part of your home. A portion of the kitchen or family room can serve the purpose very well when sectioned off with a dog or baby gate.
Use training to create a happy adoption
Dogs need order, consistency, and patience. Stay calm. Reward them with praise when they do well. Positive reinforcement creates lasting success. Sign up for our First Class Canine Training classes, and you’ll learn what a joy it is to have a well-trained dog.
Patience is key
Finally, remember to temper your expectations. Life with you is a different experience for your new companion, so give them time to adjust. You’ll soon find out that you’ve made a friend for life. No one will ever greet you with as much enthusiasm or provide you with as much unqualified love and loyalty as your dog will. Be patient, and you will be amply rewarded. Puppy Adoption Packet & Dog Adoption Packet link
You can view all of our available dogs below. Our website updates every 30 minutes.
Please Select a Location
Preparing to bring home a dog
Once you’ve decided that you’d like to adopt, there are a few first steps you’ll want to take.
Research: It’s very important to take the time to research what kind of pet is right for you, your home and your lifestyle – both now and in the future.
Get acquainted: Spend quality time interacting with the dog you’d like to adopt. Many times an animal’s behavior is different when away from other animals or in a kennel. The animal displaying bad manners or not paying attention may just be scared and lonely!
Know your responsibilities: Plan for and commit to being a responsible dog owner, including:
- Dedicating the necessary time and effort to caring for and loving your dog.
- Understanding the financial commitment involved.
- Providing the necessary medical care and exercise for your dog.
- Training to ensure good behavior and manners.