DonateReady to Adopt?

Tips for deciding if this is the right time to welcome a new pet into your home:

  • Are the other dogs and cats in your home neutered or spayed and current on shots?
    Local ordinances allow for ONE unaltered pet in the home. State law requires a rabies vaccine for your cat or dog, so we will confirm that your pets are current on a rabies vaccine. Additional vaccines, though not required, could protect your pet from any shelter-borne illness your newly-adopted pet may inadvertently bring home.
  • Have you researched the breed of pet you are interested in?
    While some breed characteristics may be present in your new animal, the best way to determine an pet?s temperament is to come meet the animals! We also recommend obedience training post-adoption to get you and your new dog off on the right paw!
  • How will you deal with housebreaking, training, behavioral problems and daily care of a pet?
    We strongly encourage crate training for your new dog and will be happy to provide you with tips for house-breaking and crate training.
  • What kind of pet is best for you and your family?
    Have you talked as a family to decide if you?re interested in a cat or a dog? Is everyone excited at the thought of having a new pet?
  • Will your working hours allow enough time to provide the care, attention and exercise a pet needs every day?
    Most everyone works. It is completely normal for pets to be at home, crated, for up to ten hours a day. Your animals likely will be sleeping the day away while you?re at work. If you do need to work longer shifts, we?ll offer suggestions for pet-sitters and dog walkers!
  • If you have children, are they prepared to be respectful to an animal that lives in your home and share the responsibilities involved in pet ownership?
    Have a family meeting and make sure everyone in the home is looking forward to a new, furry addition and all the fun and responsibility that entails!
  • Do you have the means to provide food, toys, annual vet exams, vaccinations, monthly heartworm preventative, flea control, unexpected medical costs, grooming, training, and when you travel are you able to provide boarding for the pet?
    There are certain expenses inherent to pet ownership. Have you thought about how you will provide for your new pet? Our adoption contracts will require that your pet visits a veterinarian and stays current on flea/tick prevention and annual vaccines.
  • If adopting a dog and you have a dog at home, has your dog come in for an interaction?
    While we do not require that your dog meets with our adoptable dogs prior to adoption, we do offer the option of a meet and greet, if that would make you more comfortable. We’ll also provide you with information on safe introductions at home.

Allen County SPCA Adoption Process

Here's what to expect when visiting with and adopting from us:

1. Adoption requirements

You must be 21 years of age or older to adopt from us. If you have a cat(s) or dog(s) living in your home already, a maximum of one pet can be unaltered. The other pets must be neutered or spayed. All cats and dogs in your home must be current on rabies vaccination. If you rent your home we strongly suggest approval from your landlord and any pet deposits paid before taking your new pet home. Small children (under the age of 10)  living within your household must be present to interact with the dog or cat. If adopting a dog and you have a dog at home, that dog is welcome to come in for an interaction.

In order to take your pet home with you, please provide the following:

  • Dog adoptions: must have a leash AND collar. Leashes and collars are available for purchase at the shelter.
  • Cat Adoptions: must have a crate/carrier.

2. Pre-adoption Survey

Before you visit any of our animals, you may fill out a pre-adoption survey. Even if you have seen an animal you are interested in on our website, on television or through another source, we want to make sure we gather some information to best help you find your future companion.

3. Visit with the pet

When you come to our shelter, you can ask about visiting with our animals. If you don't yet know of an animal you want to visit, take a look on our website or in our pet binder (available at our shelter) or simply do a walk-through in the kennels or cat colonies. Our printed resources have pictures and details about each dog or cat. They cover behavioral characteristics and provide information on the type of home we believe might be best for that pet.

Once you know which animal(s) you would like to meet, we will take you into our socialization room to visit with dogs or into a cat room to visit with the cats. Please note that some of our cats are available at our mobile adoption sites at the PetSmart locations in Fort Wayne. Check the "Location" for each cat or kitten on our website by clicking on their picture.

During your animal visit, you will be able to spend time interacting with the animals and ask our staff any questions you may have about how we received the animal, behavioral characteristics, and general information about the animal. We are there to help you get as familiar as possible with the animals.

Please note that it’s recommended that all those living within your household interact with the dog or cat prior to adoption.

4. Application process

After you have visited with the pet, you may feel you would like to make it a part of your family. We hope you do! If so, we will begin the adoption application approval process. This includes a simple criminal background check for animal cruelty, animal neglect, violent crimes, or domestic violence. Any such charges will result in an inability to adopt from our shelter. 

5. Pre-approved Applications

If you fill out an adoption application and do not take home the love of your life on this visit, you may ask us to process your application so that you may be pre-approved for a future pet. A pre-approved application is valid for up to six months. This will enable you to take advantage of same-day adoption events, too.

6. Same-day Adoption

You may take your new pet home the same day you visit with it if the following are accomplished:

  • You and the pet are a good match!
  • You are prepared to provide love and care for your new animal.
  • You understand that if, for some reason, the adoption does not work, you will contact us and make arrangements for the return of the animal to the Allen County SPCA. Animals from our program may not be re-homed without our permission and may never, under any circumstances, be advertised for sale or as a free pet on any public platform such as social media or the newspaper.

7. Fees and taking your pet home

Puppy 5 months old or younger $125

Adult Dog Over 25 lbs. and between 6 months and 5 years old


Small Adult Dog Under 25 lbs. and between 6 months and 8 years old


Senior Adult Dog Over 25 lbs. and 6+ years old


Senior Small Adult Dog Under 25 lbs. and 9+ years old


Bonded Pairs Adult Dogs

$100 for the pair

Bonded Pairs Senior Adult Dogs $50 for the pair
Cats and Kittens Name Your Fee on Feline Adoptions

Our adoption fees include spay or neuter surgery, distemper combination vaccination, rabies vaccination, flea prevention, canine heartworm test and prevention, registered microchip for permanent I.D., and a starter bag of pet food. This is a value of $300 to $400!

Adoption fee does not include $5 City of Fort Wayne pet tag/permit required for Fort Wayne city residents.

In order to take your pet home with you, please provide the following:

  • Dog adoptions: must have a leash AND collar. Leashes and collars are available for purchase at the shelter.
  • Cat Adoptions: must have a crate/carrier.

Please Note:

We take every measure to adopt out healthy and suitable pets for your lifestyle. If you find that you are unable to care for your new companion, you will need to call the shelter before re-homing the pet. We take this very seriously and put utmost importance on our animals' well-being when finding them forever homes. You will be asked to sign a binding contract to ensure the safety and care of your new pet.

Your new pet will be microchipped before you take him or her home. This microchip is not a GPS. If your pet ever becomes lost, the finder will have to take him or her to a local vet, our shelter, or Animal Care & Control for a simple microchip scan. This will bring up your contact information so that you can reunite with him or her.

Adoption applications available for download.
Please fill it out and do one of the following:
- Fax it to us at 260-456-5184
- Scan and email it to us
- Drop it off at our offices located at 4914 S.Hanna Street, Fort Wayne
(Office hours are Tuesday - Friday 11am - 6pm, Saturday & Sunday Noon - 4:00pm,
we are closed on Mondays)

Adoption Application