If you are interested in adopting a dog, you are required to bring any dogs in your home to the shelter to meet the dog you're interested in adopting (cat and small animal interactions are NOT required).
To read more about a dog on our PetHarbor website, click on their profile photo!
ADOPTION CENTER HOURS:
BEFORE COMING TO ADOPT
Deciding to adopt a pet is an exciting time for many families. We would like to make this process as simple as possible.
Here are a few things to keep in mind before you come in to find your new family member:
- You may have one unaltered pet, all other pets must be spayed or neutered
- You must be 18 years or older to adopt
- We ask that you discuss adopting with all adults in the home
We ask that you bring the following with you when you come to adopt:
- Family members under the age of five
- If you are seeking to adopt a dog and have a dog at home, bring your dog in for an interaction
- If planning to adopt a dog, please bring a leash and collar. Adoption dogs will not be permitted to leave in a choker or prong collar. We do have leashes and collars available for purchasing.
- If planning to adopt a cat or pocket pet, please bring a carrier. There are cardboard carriers available for purchase here if you prefer.
- A current form of a photo ID
Our Adoption Center works on a first-come, first-served basis. We do not place pets on hold. We reserve the right to place animals in the best fit home.
When you arrive at the shelter, please go to the doors to the right side of the building. There is also a sign that says adoption side. The doors will open at noon.
When you walk in the first set of doors, you will see applications on the wall to your right. Grab either a cat, dog, or small animal (rabbit, guinea pig, etc.) adoption form and fill it out completely front and back.
If you have already filled out the application online, you still must complete this step. However, all you will need to write on it is your first and last name, phone number, and “online app.”
This step is very important as it secures your spot in line. Your online application is not valid until you’ve completed this step.
Our volunteer welcomers will be at the door collecting applications and let you know where to sit while you wait for your turn to meet the animal(s) you are interested in.
They will then collect your application and write a number on it that says what number you are in line to be helped. If your application is approved, you will meet with an adoption couneslor for the next steps.
If we are at capacity in our adoption lobby, you may be asked to wait outside or in your car if the weather isn't nice. If this is the case, an adoption counselor will give you a call when you may come inside.
The time this process takes depends on how busy we are, but if you decide you are ready to adopt, you will go home with that animal the same day.
If you are wanting to adopt a cat, either a volunteer cat counselor or staff member will bring you to the cat rooms to meet and interact with the cats. Some adult cats may have some lifestyle restrictions such as needing a calm household, a home without kids or a home without dogs, or special medical needs.
You are also allowed to adopt two cats. If they are kittens from the same litter, you do not need to keep them in separate rooms when bringing them home. If they are two cats that have never met, you'll need to follow the different room acclimation process that we dicuss during your adoption.
If you decide to adopt a cat that you've met, we will begin the adoption contract, collect payment (card, cash, or check) and a photo ID, and go over medical history and everything that comes with your adoption. We will place the cat in the carrier you brought or if you need one, you can purchase a cardboard one from us for $8.
If you are interested in adopting a dog, you must bring any dogs you currently own for a meet and greet! If you do not currently own a dog, you will be set in an interaction room or outside to meet the dogs you are interested in. Our counselors will not allow you to meet a dog if they feel it is not an ideal match based on your lifestyle. It is our counselors job to place our animals in the best fit home with the animal's personality and history in mind.
If the interaction goes well, our adoption couselor will move forward with payment and going over the contract. All dogs recieve a $50 training certificate that can be used with participating certified professional dog trainers.
SMALL ANIMAL PROCESS
If you are interested in adopting one of our rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, hamsters, birds, etc., a counselor will allow you to interact with them to see if you'd like to bring them home. We frequently have bonded guinea pigs, rats, and birds that must stay together if you are wanting one of them.
The adoption only comes with the animal, not the cage or other supplies. You can buy a cardboard carrier from us to bring them home if you do not have one with you. Please know these animals take the same and sometimes more care than a dog or cat. Do research about the species of animal before deciding to adopt.
IMPORTANT TO KNOW
In order to prevent confusion among potential adopters, we have the following policies in place:
- We do not hand out applications until 11:30 a.m. You can choose to arrive earlier, but you MUST stay in line at our doors.
- Once you have turned in your application, you cannot leave the premises. You will lose your spot in line if you choose to leave and try to come back before we open.
ADOPTION PROCESS FOR CATS AT PETSMART OR PET SUPPLIES PLUS
If you are interested in adopting a cat that is at one of our offsite locations, please read the following information:
We have a separate adoption application for offsite cats. It is located at the top of this page in the yellow icon or click HERE. You MUST fill this application out to be considered for the cat you are interested in. Filling this application out puts you “in line” for the cat.
Our adoption assistants will go through offsite applications to approve them and they will call the approved ones in order of which they received them to see if you are still interested.
You will only be called if your application has been approved and are next in line for the cat.
Offsite adoptions can only take place during our shelter’s adoption hours because we have to have adoption staff to facilitate the rest of the adoption process.
DOG & CAT ADOPTION FEES
$125 Puppies under 6 months old
$100 Small Dogs (Under 25 pounds) 6 months - 8 years
$100 Large Dogs (25+ pounds) 6 months - 5 years
$50 Senior Small Dogs (Under 25 pounds) 9+ years old
$25 Senior Large Dogs (25+ pounds) 6+ years old
$65 We currently have a grant that helps cover our cat adoption fees, so most people give around $30.
SMALL ANIMAL ADOPTION FEES
$25 Guinea Pig, Rabbit, Rat, Cockatiel
$15 Hamster, Gerbil, Mouse, Parakeet
WHAT'S INCLUDED IN YOUR ADOPTION FEE
The adoption of your pet includes the following ($300 Value):
- First distemper combination vaccine
- Rabies vaccination (if animal is of age)
- Heartworm test (dogs only)
- First month of flea preventative during flea season
- A starter bag of food
- Donated exam from participating veterinarians
- $50 Training Certificate (dogs only)
- Spay/Neuter surgery (dogs, cats, rabbits)
Please note the adoption fee does not include the pet registration for those residing within city limits.Click HERE to learn more about pet registrations.
ADDITIONAL ITEMS AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE
$5 Flat Collars
$10 Martingale Collars
$8 Cardboard carrier for cats or pocket pets
Additionally, we partner with GoodPup to help make access to training your new dog easier than ever before! Training is essential to building a bond with your dog. And, it’s easier, more enjoyable, and more effective when done in the dog’s home with its owner. GoodPup provides private training with certified trainers who teach cues and advanced behavior on topics like crate training, barking, begging, and jumping. Sign up today to receive an exclusive lifetime discount and GoodPup will make a donation to us here at Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control.
A WORD ABOUT THE HEALTH OF ADOPTION PETS
The City of Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control Department cannot guarantee that the pets available for adoption have not been exposed to an illness prior to coming to our department or prior to vaccinations taking effect. Although we are not aware of any serious health condition applicable to any pet, local veterinary clinics donate a free heath examination and can explain conditions common to stray animals, owner neglected animals, and animals housed in a kennel. These conditions may include internal parasites, external parasites, and upper respiratory infections.
Animal Care and Control cannot reimburse medical expenses. An applicant that chooses to keep and provide treatment for a pet does so at their own expense. We suggest you consult with your veterinarian before introducing your new pet to the pets you now own.