Adoption Process

How to adopt from the Seattle Animal Shelter...

  • Driver's license or other current picture ID.
  • If you rent, bring a copy of your lease or your landlord's name and phone number.
  • Any family or household members who will live with the pet.
  • If you have a resident dog and are looking to adopt an additional dog, both dogs will need to meet at the shelter.

Allow at least one hour for meeting the pet and filling out paperwork. Adoption paperwork must be started one hour before closing.

You'll meet the adoption animals and then fill out paperwork and interview with staff. If you and an animal are a match, schedule the health services he needs and pay the adoption fees. You'll be informed when you can pick up your pet and take him home.

Step 1. Look at the adoption animals.
Ask an Animal Care Officer or volunteer to show you around.

Step 2. Fill out the initial paperwork.
Fill out the adoption application.

Step 3. Interview with the Animal Care Officer.
The Animal Care Officer reviews your application with you and asks some follow-up questions.

Step 4. Interact with the adoption animals.
Once the Animal Care Officer has signed your adoption application, ask the officer or a volunteer to take you to the adoption room. When you see an animal you're interested in, the volunteer or staff member can take him out of his cage so you can spend time with him. If you live with other people, the whole family meets your prospective pet.

Step 5. Meet with the Animal Care Officer for adoption counseling.
This interview helps you make an informed choice about adopting and helps us find the right home for the animal.

If you are new to pet ownership, the Animal Care Officer can talk with you about the lifestyle changes that pets bring, the traits of different breeds, and more.

Step 6. Complete the final adoption agreement.
Sign the forms covering fees, licensing, vaccines and more.

Step 7. Pay the cashier.
Click here for the complete list of fees.

Step 8. Schedule a time to take your new pet home.
The Animal Care Officer lets you know when your pet will be ready to come home. This time varies according to your pet's spay/neuter needs.

Adoption fees cover spay/neuter services, vaccinations, worming and a microchip.

Adopters who live in the Seattle city limits are also required to purchase a two-year, altered pet license at the time of adoption. Please visit our Pet Licensing page for more information.

Petfinder shows pets living at the shelter and in foster care. If he's here, we'll look him up when you arrive. If he's listed as a foster animal, we'll refer you to his foster instructions.

Many animals at the shelter are waiting for their owners to claim them. If you are interested in adopting one of these animals, we have a "First Choice" reservation system. Fill out an application and talk with an Animal Care Officer. If you're qualified to adopt the animal, you become the "First Choice."

The Animal Care Officer will share with you the date that the animal will be available if his owner does not claim him. You'll need to call the day before to see if the animal has been claimed. If he hasn't, you have all day of the available date to adopt him. After that date, the animal will be available to all eligible adopters.

To meet an animal in foster care, please follow the specific instructions on the individual profile page.

If you and the foster animal seem like a good match, a volunteer or animal care officer will contact you within 48 hours and set up a time to meet the pet and get to know them.

If you decide to adopt, you will visit the Seattle Animal Shelter to pay fees and complete the adoption.

Available animals — updated live!
Adoption applications
Become a foster parent