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Adoption Process

Matchmaking Is Our Specialty


While we work hard to place animals as quickly as possible in order to rescue more, we are committed to making great matches. Our open, friendly, and conversation-based process considers many factors – energy level, personality, and experience, to name a few – when making a match. If the animal’s needs are met and you are happy with the pet you bring home, it is more likely to last forever. We look forward to helping you meet your new best friend!

UPDATE – PLEASE READ: At this time, we are only accepting adoption applications for specific animals currently in our shelter and foster homes.

  • If there isn’t a specific pet attached to the application, we can’t guarantee that we’ll review it. If you didn’t list an animal on your application, please check out our available dogs, cats, and small animals and email us with the name(s) of the pet(s) that you’re interested in so we can add them to your application. If you don’t see anyone that seems like a fit for your home, check back! We have new animals coming in regularly.
  • If you are interested in a pet that is in foster care, please reach out to the foster parent directly (their contact info is noted in the pet’s bio on our adoption page) to let them know you have applied for adoption.
  • If we are able to match you with the pet you listed on your application, we will reach out to you!
  • If you’ve submitted an application already but see another animal you’re interested in, please email us rather than submit a second application — we can just update the application we already have on file.

We are processing applications as quickly as we can: sometimes the volume outstrips our capacity, so we thank you in advance for your patience and understanding!

Adoption fees:

    • Cat (6 months of age and older): $60
    • Kitten (under 6 months): $100
    • Kitten pair (under 6 months): $150
    • Large adult dog (older than 1 year): $150
    • Small dog (under 25 lbs): $250
    • Puppy (under 1 year of age): $250
    • Small animal (guinea pig, hamster, gerbil, rabbit): $25

(Fees do not include PA sales tax.)

Cat Adoption Information

Before going home, all cats and kittens are:

  • spayed or neutered;
  • vaccinated for: panleukopenia, rhinotracheitis, and calici (for kittens, the first in a series of vaccinations that should be completed by the adopter at your veterinarian’s office or by returning to a PAWS clinic) and rabies (for cats three months and older);
  • dewormed (often the first in a series of treatments that should be completed by the adopter);
  • treated for fleas (treatment must continue monthly to keep your pet flea-free); and,
  • microchipped. If your pet is ever lost, a microchip with your contact info can be its ticket home.

Cats must go home in a cat carrier for safety; you can bring one with you or purchase at our facilities.

Dog Adoption Information

Before going home, all dogs and puppies are:

  • spayed or neutered;
  • vaccinated for: distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza, and parvovirus (DHPP – for puppies, the first in a series of three vaccinations that should be completed by the adopter either at your veterinarian’s office or by returning to a PAWS clinic), bordetella, and rabies;
  • dewormed (often the first in a series of treatments that should be completed by the adopter);
  • treated for fleas (treatment must continue monthly to keep your pet flea-free); and,
  • microchipped. If your pet is ever lost, a microchip with your contact info can be its ticket home.

Dogs must go home in a collar or harness and leash, for safety. You can bring your own or they are available for purchase at our facilities. Adopters living in Philadelphia must also purchase a city dog license at the time of adoption ($18).

Adoption Locations


PAWS’ Old City Adoption Center is open! Only cats are available and approved adopters with appointments will be prioritized. Walk-ins are welcome as space permits but parties of four or more are required to have an appointment. Adoptions for other cats and all dogs are taking place by appointment at PAWS’ Grays Ferry shelter or through foster homes. PAWS cats are also now available for adoption at PetSmart, 1415 Washington Avenue! Our Northeast Adoption Center is temporarily closed.

Adoption Applications

Cat Adoption Application


Your new family member is waiting! Get started by completing the adoption form online for cats and kittens.

Go To Application

Dog Adoption Application


Ready to welcome a new canine family member? Complete your adoption form online to get started.

Go To Application

Small Animal Adoption Application


A tiny new companion is ready to join your household! Complete your adoption form online to get started.

Go To Application

Your New Best Friend Is Waiting!