Before You Arrive
Adopting a pet is very big decision, and it’s always best to think about what type of dog or cat would be best for your household. For example, if you have a lot of people coming in and out of your home, an animal that gets frightened easily or doesn’t like meeting new people wouldn’t be a good match. Is shedding a factor? Do you need a dog or cat that is good with children, other dogs, or other cats? If you rent a property, does your landlord allow animals? If you’re uncertain, it’s always best to check with your landlord about their pet policies just to make sure.

Tips to Speed Up the Adoption Process:

  • Make sure you let your references know that the BCHS is going to be calling them so we can get a hold of them as soon as possible.
  • It’s always helpful to have a copy of your lease, if you rent, with the pet policy attached.
  • Bring any roommates or family members along, so that everyone may meet the dog or cat as soon as possible. Everyone living in the household must eventually meet the animal you’re looking to adopt before they may leave the shelter.
  • If you currently have a cat or dog, make sure that they are up to date on all of their shots, including their rabies vaccination and canine distemper vaccine. You’ll need a copy of your dog’s most recent rabies vaccination certificate, to do the dog introduction, and our staff cannot send cats home if your current felines haven’t had all of their shots. Bring copies of their vaccination certificates to the shelter when you fill out your application, which will save staff time and speed the process up!

Selecting a Pet
Sometimes the pet you end up adopting seems like the complete opposite of the pet you came into the shelter looking for! Instead of focusing on a particular age or breed, pay attention to the behaviors of all of the dogs and cats in the shelter. Remember the benefits of adopting a senior pet; you often times know what you’re getting into with them as far as behaviors go more so than you do with puppies or kittens! Above all else, ask questions. Our staff know all of the animals in the shelter and would be happy to discuss whether or not they’d be a good fit for your home. Any decisions they make regarding placing animals are based off of behaviors we’ve seen at the shelter, with the best intentions for both the animal being adopted and the family trying to adopt them in mind.

Applying for a Pet
Here at BCHS we do not do same day adoptions. Our adoption process typically takes 48 hours, and involves four stages:

  • Meeting with a pet outside of their kennel or cage
  • Filling out an application for that pet
  • BCHS staff calls your references and our Kennel Director approves or denies the application
  • You have a second visit with that pet, typically on which you will do the adoption

As previously mentioned, we require all members of the household to meet with the pet before they may go home with their new family. All current pets must be up to date on their rabies vaccinations, and if you are looking to adopt a dog and currently have a dog, you’ll need to provide the vaccination certificate and do a dog introduction at the shelter.

Other Important Things to Note:

  • We do not, under any circumstances, adopt out pets that will be living outdoors. All pets adopted from our shelter are to be indoor pets only.
  • Adopters must be 21 years of age with a valid photo I.D., or 18 years of age with a co-signer that is over 21 years.
  • Under no circumstances do we adopt pets out as gifts.
  • We do not adopt to college students living in student housing, on-campus homes, or multi-student houses/apartments. Due to what can often be a constantly changing living environment, our policy is to limit our adoptions to those out of school. Final decisions on this are up to staff.