Adoption FAQ

Have questions about adopting a HSSJC pet? Check out these common questions and answers below. You can also check out our ADOPT page for procedures, adoption programs, and fees. If you still have questions feel free to call or email us!

Will I need to take my new pet to the vet?

Yes. Shelter pets come with a one week health guarantee as long as you do a wellness exam with your veterinarian in the first week after adopting. Even though we have provided your new pet with their vaccinations and basic testing, we are limited in the resources and treatments we can provide.

What vaccinations will my new pet have?

Our canines come with a distemper/parvo, bordetella, and rabies vaccination and a deworming. If old enough they have been tested for heartworm and lymes disease. Both dogs and cats are microchipped, have a fecal sample that was cleared of parasites and spayed or neutered before going home. Felines receive a Fel-O-Guard® Plus 3 vaccine that prevents Feline Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia and a deworming. Felines have also been tested for FIV/Felv. You will receive a copy of all vaccinations and medical information at the time of adoption.

Can my dog at home meet the dog I’m interested in?

Once your application has been approved an Adoption Specialist will give you a call to set up an appointment for a Meet & Greet. During this appointment we will introduce your dog to our shelter dog. Before adopting, you will be asked to complete and discuss the Adoption Council Questionnaire.

Will my new pet be potty trained?

Our staff works hard to keep the shelter pets on a regular schedule to play and exercise in large indoor and outdoor runs. Volunteers come in daily to take the dogs on walks as well. However, your new pet may need some refresher courses in potty training. We suggest keeping your new dog on a consistent schedule and taking your pet out on a leash (even if you have a fenced in yard) to the same part of the yard each time. Once the animal goes potty immediately make it a big celebration and give your new pet a treat while still outside. This will help reinforce the good behavior of going potty outside.

Does my new pet get along with children or other animals?

We do not always have a complete background history on each of the animals as the majority of them come to us as strays. Each canine’s behavior and temperament are assessed. Restrictions may be put on a certain dog based upon the behavior assessment findings.

What is the adoption process like?

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How much does it cost to adopt a pet?

Canine adoption fees are $200.00. Purple Collar Club members are seniors or special needs dogs with a reduced adoption fee of $50.00. Kittens under one year old are $50.00, adult cats over a year are $25.00 and senior cats ages 5+ have no fee at all. Take part in our Adopt-A-Buddy program where the adoption fee for two kittens is only $80.00! Check out the Adopt page for more information on Pocket Pet adoption fees.

You will also need to budget for other items your new pet may need. Some examples include a dog crate, cat carrier, appropriate cage for pocket pets, bowls, collar, leash, Gentle Leader or Easy Walk Harness, obedience training, wellness check at a veterinarian, flea and tick preventative, toys and treats. Don’t forget your new pet will need wholesome food too! Our adoptable dogs and cats have been fed a diet of Well Pet and Eagle Pack products.

What should I bring with me when I come to pick up my new pet?

If you’re adopting a dog you will need to bring  or purchase in our boutique a leash and collar. Gentle Leaders are highly suggested for medium and large size dogs. Cats will need to be transported in a secure carrier. The shelter does sell cardboard cat carriers for $5.00. All animals must be transported in a safe and humane manner to their new homes. Dogs cannot be loose in the bed of a truck and cats must be in a carrier.

What type of food do the shelter pets eat?

Our adoption pets are fed Eagle Pack and Wellness brand dry foods. You can purchase this food here at our office, at Pet Supplies Plus in South Bend and Paw Mart in Granger and Mishawaka.

What if it doesn’t work out, will I get a refund?

Each animal is given a 7 day health guarantee as mentioned above. A refund will be given if your veterinarian discovers a health concern and recommends that the animal should be returned to the shelter within the first 7 days after adopting. Refunds are not given for temperament or behavior issues including the animal not getting along with other pets in the home.