How To Adopt

Whether you’ve already made the decision to adopt, contemplating the idea, or just looking for more information on the topic—you’ve come to the right place. Here you’ll find an overview of our process, fees, tips and other helpful information about adopting a pet.

View hours & directions »

View online profiles of our pets »

View any available special adoption programs and off-site events>>

Standard Adoption Fees For Cats :

  • Cats over 1 year = $50
  • Cats under 1 year = $75


Standard Adoption Fees For Dogs :

  • Dogs housed in our indoor kennels = $125
  • Dogs housed in our outdoor kennels = $50
  • Many dogs have sponsored adoption fees!


Additional Fees & Costs:

  • The purchase of heartworm prevention will be added to the adoption fee for dogs over six months. Prices vary from $30 to $40 depending on the weight of the dog. If you’d prefer, you may purchase up to a one-year supply for the dog you adopt.
  • The city of Jacksonville requires all adopters under the age of 62 living within Duval County (excluding Jacksonville Beach) to purchase a rabies tag at the time of adoption for any pet that has received its rabies vaccination. The cost for the tag is $20. 

What the Adoption Fees Cover

The adoption fees that we collect help us provide food, shelter, important medical care and inoculations for the animals. Each adoption fee includes the following for your new pet (retail value is approximately $400):

  • Cost of spaying and neutering
  • Initial inoculations
  • Microchip implant (all animals)
  • FeLV/FIV Combo Test (Feline Only)
  • Occult Heartworm Test
  • Flea and Tick Prevention
  • Monthly Parasite Prevention
  • 30-day 24Petwatch Pet Insurance


Step 1: Preparing for your new pet

Just like any of life’s big events, the first step involved with adopting a pet is to properly prepare for your new furry friend. One way to begin this step is to make a list of everything and everyone that your new pet will come in contact with, be affected by and/or have an effect on. We suggest you:

  • Contact your landlord or homeowners association regarding any pet policy or restrictions.
  • Prepare your home by setting up its bed, food & water bowls, etc… ahead of time.
  • Bring in all family members and/or roommates that will come in contact with your new pet.
  • If adopting a dog, bring in any current resident dogs for an initial meet and greet. (Visiting pets must be up-to-date with their vaccinations.)
  • Be prepared to spend at least one hour with a counselor to process the adoption.
  • Bring an approved leash and collar (for dogs and puppies) or an approved carrier (for cats and kittens). These items can be purchased in our boutique during the adoption checkout process.

Step 2: How to find your new best friend.

Once you’ve made your way down to our location and inside our adoption center (view hours & directions ») the next step is to begin looking for your perfect match. Feel free to walk through our facility to see the many wonderful pets we have available for adoption. You may stop at our boutique counter at any time to ask questions. (Don’t forget to view our off-site events calendar.)

Step 3: Get to know each other.

Once you find a pet that you are considering to adopt, return to the boutique area where you will be asked to complete a brief adopter profile sheet and a counselor can be assigned to help you. The counselor will meet with you to discuss your adopter profile, the pet’s history and background, tell you a little about its personality and then give you a chance to spend time with the animal.

If your potential new best friend hasn’t completely convinced you by this time, we offer commitment-free sleepovers on most pets.

Step 4: Making it official.

Once you are confident that you’ve found the right pet, the counselor will assist you by processing the adoption paperwork and updating the pet’s microchip registration records. You’ll get an “important paper packet” containing a welcome sheet, training tips, records of the pet’s history and vaccinations, and other helpful paperwork. In most cases, you can take your new pet home with you the same day you come in.

Once you get home, remember to:

  • Confirm via email your 24Petwatch Pet Insurance (provided to you free for 30 days)
  • Set an appointment with a veterinarian for your pet’s next round of vaccinations.

More information on pet vaccinations, as well as animal welfare laws, can be found on our Pet Laws page. Additional resources can be found on our Pet Tips page.

If you have any questions, issues or concerns about your pet once you get home, please don’t hesitate to call us. Our Adoption Support Team is here to help – just call 904.725.8766, option 2.


To receive a Pet Alert email when a dog or cat that matches what you are interested in is placed up for adoption go to

  • Select “Finding A Pet Advanced Search”
  • Enter the criteria for your preferences and select “Search”
  • The results page will provide an option to enter your email address to receive a Pet Alert message when an animal meeting your criteria is posted to the Petango website
  • Adoptable animals from our shelter are included on Petango so this will include our dogs and cats at the Jacksonville Humane Society.