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Pet-Adoption FAQs

Thank you for using FurryFriends! We’re here to help you every step of the way from “just looking” at over 250,000 adoptable pets, to bringing your pet home, to living a long and happy life with your new family member.

The following links will take you to some of the most frequently asked questions about adopting a pet that you see on FurryFriends. If you can’t find the answer below, please contact us (see the bottom of this page) with any additional questions you have.

How Do I Search For a Pet?

FurryFriends.com is a searchable list of pets from over 11,000 shelters and rescue groups across the US, Canada, and Mexico. To find an adoptable pet, you can begin your search using “Find a Pet” located above. Since FurryFriends is updated regularly, we recommend that you keep checking back or create a saved search email alert to be notified when new pets matching your search criteria are added to the site.

Can I Save My Search or Be Notified When New Pets Are Available?

To be notified by email when pets matching your search criteria are first posted on the site, use our saved search feature. After performing a search, you will see a button with a bell icon to the right of your search results. Click on this button to set an email alert for your search. To manage all saved searches you can login or create and account here.

Is the Pet I See on FurryFriends Still Adoptable?

Across the 11,000 shelter and rescue groups in FurryFriends’s North American network, each is responsible for updating adoptable pet listings. To learn about a specific pet, please contact the shelter or rescue directly by going to the Pet Profile page and clicking the “Ask About” button.

How Often is FurryFriends Updated?

Because each shelter and rescue group is responsible for keeping its adoptable pet listings current, FurryFriends is continuously updated.

How Do I Adopt a Pet I See On FurryFriends?

FurryFriends is a website and searchable database for over 11,000 animal shelters and rescue groups across the US, Canada and Mexico to post their adoptable pets. While FurryFriends does provide a web-based adoption platform for groups across North America, we are not involved in any of our members’ pet adoptions. Each adoption group using our site has its own adoption policies and procedures and solely handles its own pet adoptions. To adopt a pet you see listed on FurryFriends, please click the “Ask About” button on the pet’s profile. You will then be given the group’s contact information and, if an email is available for that group, you will be able to email that group using our form.

How Do I Meet a Pet I See on FurryFriends?

Once you find a pet you’re interested in adopting, you’ll probably want to meet him or her. Go to the Pet Profile page by clicking on the pet’s picture or name on a search results page. This takes you to the pet’s detail page. Click “Ask About” to directly contact the shelter or rescue to inquire further.

Does Contacting the Shelter or Rescue Group Reserve the Pet I’m Interested In?

Submitting an adoption inquiry does not guarantee that the pet you’ve inquired about will still be available. For more information regarding the status of your inquiry, or the pet you’ve applied for, please contact the shelter or rescue group that listed the pet. The shelter’s address and contact information can also be found on the pet’s profile page.

Do I Need to Apply to FurryFriends?

No. Once you’ve submitted an inquiry to an adoption group, the shelter or rescue group with the pet you’re interested in will be sent your information. It is then up to the shelter or rescue group to determine whether it’s a match.

How Will I Know If I’ve Been Approved to Adopt a Pet?

After submitting an adoption inquiry, the shelter or rescue group with the pet you’re interested in will contact you. You may also reach out to the shelter or rescue group directly to follow up.

How Can I Adopt a Pet I See On FurryFriends?

FurryFriends is a website and searchable database for nearly 14,000 animal shelters and rescue groups across the US, Canada and Mexico to post their adoptable pets. While FurryFriends does provide a web-based adoption platform for groups across North America, we are not involved in any of our members’ pet adoptions. Each adoption group using our site has its own adoption policies and procedures and solely handles its own pet adoptions. To adopt a pet you see listed on FurryFriends, please click the "Adopt Me" button or the "Contact this Organization" button on the pet's profile. You will then be given the group's contact information and, if an email is available for that group, you will be able to email that group using our form. More questions about adopting a pet:

Does Contacting the Adoption Group Put The Pet on Hold?

p>Submitting an adoption inquiry does not guarantee the pet you’ve applied for, nor does it place a pet “on hold”. For more information regarding the status of your application, or the pet you’ve applied for, please contact the shelter or rescue group listing the pet directly.

Am I Applying to FurryFriends?

No. Once you’ve submitted an inquiry to an adoption group, the shelter or rescue group with the pet you’re interested in will be sent your information. It is then up to the shelter or rescue group to determine whether it’s a match.

How Will I Know If I've Been Approved to Adopt a Pet?

After submitting an adoption inquiry, the shelter or rescue group with the pet you’re interested in will contact you. You may also reach out to the shelter or rescue group directly to follow up.

How Long Will It Take to Hear Back From The Adoption Group?

FurryFriends is a community and, like all communities, each individual or organization is a little bit different. Ideally, when you visit an animal shelter someone will greet you when you walk through the door, escort you in to meet the pets and answer your questions. Sometimes though, the person at the desk is on a tough phone call, everyone in the reception office is tied up with two boxes of kittens that just arrived, and the volunteer in the dog kennels just started and has as many questions as you do. Likewise, some days you might send in an inquiry and get a response within a few minutes and other groups may take a few days or a week. Don’t be afraid to follow up with the shelter or rescue group. Learn more

What Are The Requirements For Adopting A Pet?

Each adoption group that lists its pets on FurryFriends has its own rules and requirements for adopting pets. If you’re interested in a specific pet, please reach out to the adoption group that created the pet listing to find out what their policies are.

Can I Adopt a Pet Who’s Out of State?

Thank you for your interest in adopting a pet! Each adoption group that lists its pets on FurryFriends has its own rules and requirements for adopting out pets. FurryFriends doesn’t dictate adoption group policy, including adoption requirements and whether out-of-state adoptions are allowed by each group. If you’re interested in a specific pet, please reach out to the adoption group that has that pet. (You can contact the group using the contact information found of the pet’s profile page).

Will There Be An Adoption Fee?

FurryFriends doesn’t dictate adoption group policy, including adoption requirements and fees. If you’re interested in a specific pet, please contact the adoption group that created the pet listing through the Pet Profile page or Member Home Page.

Why Do Shelters and Rescue Groups Charge Adoption Fees?

Adoption fees help cover the medical care of the animal while he or she waits for a new home, as well as food and transportation costs. These fees help to provide care for the other animals in the shelter or rescue group who may have medical bills that are much higher than any possible adoption fee. The money also acts as a donation to help support the organization as a whole, allowing the group to continue its efforts to rescue and rehome pets. Learn more about pet adoption fees.

Why Wasn't I Selected to Adopt?

Thank you for thinking adoption first! Each shelter and rescue group has its own adoption process. We do not dictate adoption procedures to our FurryFriends members, although we do encourage them to do everything possible to facilitate finding good homes for their adoptable pets. We hope you won’t let this one experience change your mind about providing a loving home to a pet in need. There are many animal shelters and rescue groups with many more adoptable pets waiting for their forever homes! Thank you for helping an adoptable pet and we wish you the best of luck in your search to find a new member of your family. If you have specific questions or concerns about a shelter, please contact us below

How Can I Tell If a Rescue Group is Real or a Scam?

All the adoption groups that list their pets on FurryFriends have been carefully screened by our shelter outreach staff. If you have concerns about a shelter or rescue group listed on FurryFriends, please contact us. If you’re looking outside of FurryFriends for a pet to adopt, there are some red flags to keep an eye out for. No one point alone proves whether a group is or is not legitimate. If you find several of these warning signs, you might want to look for your adoptable pet elsewhere. Learn the warning signs that a rescue group could be a scam.

How Do I Make a Complaint About a Shelter or Rescue Group?

All of the animal shelters and rescue groups on our site undergo an application and screening process prior to being able to post their group’s adoptable pets. They must also provide a letter of reference from their primary veterinarian. If you have concerns about a particular shelter or rescue group posting on our site, you are welcome to contact us. It’s important to us that our member shelters and rescue groups remain in good standing in the animal welfare community. Please be sure to include the full name, city, and state of the group you are referring to. Note: Specific complaints about rescue groups included in the comments below will be deleted. Please be sure to email us any concerns.

Do you still have a question? Contact us here and we’ll be happy to help.