Meet Your Match

Adoption FAQ's

Meet Your Match

Our animals change daily, so please check our lists of adoptable dogs and adoptable cats frequently. Once you find an animal you’d like to adopt, the next steps are to come meet the animal and complete an application.  When you visit us, let us know who caught your eye, and we will make sure they’re great match for you and your family.

Each animal has a story. We hope you’ll review our pet list and come visit us soon.  Walk through our kennels and catteries with an open heart and open mind. Sometimes the one you think you want isn’t the one you really need.  But don’t worry…because they’ll reach out and rescue you.

Adoption FAQ's

What are your dog adoption fees?

Dog Adoption fees include:

  • Heartworm Test (age appropriate)
  • At least one round of age appropriate vaccinations
  • At least one round of flea/tick preventative
  • Complimentary Bag of Food
  • Complimentary Wellness Exam & Rabies Vaccine
  • 30 Days of Complimentary Health Insurance (Ask an adoption counselor for details).

Adoption Fees:

Up to 11 months: $200
1-4 years: $100
5-9 years: $55
10+ years: $35

*The non-refundable hold fee for puppies is $50. 

What are your cat adoption fees?

Cat Adoption fees include:

  • Feline Leukemia/FIV Test (age appropriate)
  • At least one round of age appropriate vaccinations
  • At least one round of flea/tick preventative
  • Complimentary Bag of Food
  • Complimentary Wellness Exam & Rabies Vaccine
  • 30 Days of Complimentary Health Insurance (Ask an adoption counselor for details).

Adoption Fees:

Up to 11 months: $100
1-4 years: $65
5-9 years: $35
10+ years: $25

 

How old do you have to be to adopt a pet?

You must be at least 18 years old to adopt a pet. If, however, you live with your parents, then your parents will need to fill out an application and meet all the meet and greet guidelines to complete an adoption.

 

Do you have to own your home to adopt?

No! We welcome individuals who rent or lease.  If that is the case, then please come with a copy of your pet policy–or ensure we can reach your landlord to confirm the pet policy.

Do you adopt animals to people outside of Hamilton County or outside the state?

HSHC requires that any animal adopted from us be returned to us if he or she cannot be kept by an adopter for any reason–for the duration of the pet’s life.

Therefore, we will only adopt pets to residents outside Indiana if they live in surrounding states–Illinois, Michigan, Kentucky, and Ohio.  Please note that all the same adoption policies and requirements apply.

Do you have to have a fenced in yard to adopt a dog?

The fencing/containment required depends on the dog.  Most dogs do not require a physical fence.  Instead, we may recommend they be leash walked or an invisible fence.  You do have to offer a safe way to keep your pet contained on your property.

Do you adopt out outdoor cats?

Yes! Please learn more about our Community Cat Program HERE.

Who all  needs to be a part of the adoption process?/What is a “meet and greet?”

Before visiting with prospective pets, we ask that you please fill out an application either online or at the shelter so we can get to know more about you, your family and existing pets.

PLEASE NOTE:  We require that children under 16 be introduced to new pets before the adoption is finalized. (We may require that ALL family members, regardless of age, meet a dog with special needs. This requirement may be waived for some cat adoptions.)

We also require that any existing dogs in the home have a successful “meet and greet” with your prospective new dog.  Our team of professionals will supervise the meet and greet in one of our outdoor/indoor play areas to ensure compatibility. So if you are driving a long distance to visit us, please bring your dog(s) and family with you.

We do not require “meet and greets” for cats in the home when adopting a cat from us.

What happens if more than one person submits an application for the same pet?

When we have multiple applications for one pet, our team will speak with the applicants we feel are the best potential fit to schedule a meet and greet.  Based on those meetings, we will determine the best fit–which may not always be the first application that we received.  If, however, there are multiple “best fit” options for a pet, we will defer to the first, “best fit” application submitted.

 

How does a “hold” work?

A hold may be placed on animal once you have submitted your application, it has been approved, and you have met the animal you are interested in adopting. Once a hold is placed on an animal it will be for no more than 24 hours. If an animal is on hold for a potential adopter, it is not available to be viewed for adoption until the animal is no longer on hold.

Hold fees range from $35-$50 depending on the animal. Hold fees may also vary during special adoption specials.

Can I get a refund on my hold fee?

All hold fees are non-refundable. Hold fees not applied toward the adoption fee are considered tax-deductible donations that we put to good use such as feeding and sheltering our adorable adoptables!

If I place an animal on hold first, will I automatically get it?

HSHC management reserves the right to deny any application if it is deemed in the best interest of the animal and/or parties involved.

For example, most hold fees are placed so a “meet & greet” may be arranged with other family members and/or pets. In the event that meeting doesn’t go well, the adoption would not be completed.

What times can you visit with an animal?

We are open for adoptions every day at 12PM EXCEPT on Wednesdays.  Click here to see our Adoption Hours.

Please note–we will accept applications up until 15 minutes before closing- as long as you are approved you will get to go through the showing process.

Customers that submit an application after 4:45pm/6:45pm may not be able to go into a showing that business day and will be asked to return the following day.

Can I adopt an animal as a gift for someone?

Because choosing a pet is a very personal – and lifelong – decision, we do not allow pets to be adopted as gifts. The exception to this rule is adopting a pet for your dependent children. Gift certificates are available at our front desk.

Can you call me when you receive a certain breed of dog?

Unfortunately, no. But you can submit an application online, and our matchmaker will help pair you with the best fit for your home.

What do I need to bring when picking up my animal to bring them home?

If you are adopting a cat, please be prepared to bring your own carrier at pickup OR you may purchase one in our gift shop.

If you are adopting a dog, please bring a leash with you OR you may purchase one in our gift shop.

Know When
to Hold
Them

A non-refundable hold fee, ranging from $35-$50 depending on the adoption fee, may be placed on a potential family member making them unavailable to other adopters until 5:00 PM the next business day. Holds may only be placed on animal once you have submitted your application, it has been approved, and you have met the animal you are interested in adopting. We do not accept holds over the phone.  Every moment an animal is on hold is a missed opportunity for someone else to meet them–so we ask that you take that into consideration.

Note, we are closed on Wednesdays for adoptions, so holds placed on Tuesdays are good until 5:00 PM on Thursday.

 

Hold Process

35

Dollar minimum hold fee

50

Dollar maximum hold fee

24

Hour hold period

Returning an Animal

If you’re having issues with your adopted pet, we’re here to help! Our Animal Behavior Team is at your disposal to offer advice, training tips and so many other resources to help you at no cost! We’re an email or phone call away, so don’t give up! Call 317-773-4974 or email behavior@hamiltonhumane.com for support.

If your match doesn’t turn out to be the love of your life, our adoption policy requires the animal be returned to the shelter so we can ensure they are safely re-homed. Finding a pet a new home via Craigslist or other advertising outlets often results in a devastating outcome for an animal. Someone else out there is the right match, and we promise not to give up until we’ve found that home.

Love & Let Live

Every animal deserves a second chance at love — and life. We invite you to be part of the solution and give back to the animals who give us so much.