Did You Know?
Learn more about how to adopt from the Seattle Animal Shelter.
Click on the links to expand each section:
What should I bring?
How much time should I allow?
Allow at least one hour for meeting the pet and filling out paperwork. Adoption paperwork must be started one hour before closing.
8 Steps to Adoption
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.
Step 2. Fill out the initial paperwork.
Step 3. Interview with the Animal Care Officer.
Step 4. Interact with the adoption animals.
Step 5. Meet with the Animal Care Officer for adoption counseling.
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.
Step 7. Pay the cashier.
Step 8. Schedule a time to take your new pet home.
What will it cost?
Adoption costs cover a pet license (Seattle and unincorporated King County only), spay/neuter services, vaccinations and worming, a feline leukemia test, a microchip, and a certificate for a free initial health exam at any local veterinary hospital. Adoption costs vary, click here for the complete list of fees.
I saw this dog / cat / critter on Petfinder. Is he still available?
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.
What if I see an animal I like, but there’s no “I’m Available for Adoption” sign on his cage?
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.
How do I adopt a foster animal?
For a foster dog, cat, or critter shown on a poster at the shelter or on Petfinder, follow the instructions in their posting.
If you and the foster animal seem like a good match, a volunteer or Animal Care Officer will contact you within 48 hours of your call or application. You’ll get to meet and get to know the foster animal.If you decide to adopt the foster animal, visit the Seattle Animal Shelter and follow the standard adoption procedures (fill out adoption paperwork, pay fees, etc.).