Adoption Handbook: A guide for potential adopters and volunteers
About how we match pets and families
About A Dog Rescue Society has been active since October 2018. We are a small group of dedicated volunteers and fosters who provide sanctuary for homeless dogs.
When a dog is taken into our care we coordinate vetting and a loving foster home. We transport the dog to Canada only when the dog is deemed healthy by our vet and ready to travel. We rely on volunteer travelers to bring our dogs to Canada so sometimes adopters must be patient and flexible as we have to take flights when we have a volunteer willing to help and this can be un-predictable or sometimes last minute.
Our adoption application is thorough; when matching a pet to a family we consider many factors:
Family Members (adults, children)
Daily routine and lifestyle
Other animals in the home
Level of experience with dogs
Type of housing
We want to be as certain as possible that bringing your new pet home will be as smooth and easy as possible. We follow up with all adopters to see how things are going.
Our responsibility is to ensure that the animal you wish to adopt is well suited for you, your home, and lifestyle. We always look for the best possible conditions for each animal.
Note that the animals in our care have uncertain and often unknown pasts. We endeavour to do our best at age/breed/size, however we can never be certain.
About Our Adoption Process
Step 1: Complete the online adoption application found on our website. If you have difficulty with the form email email@example.com
Step 2: Our adoption coordinator will review your application and reply to you via email or telephone. We have the right to decline your application for any reason we feel will does not match the needs of the dog you are applying for.
Step 3: In every adoption we require a home visit. Please be prepared to have an About A Dog volunteer visit your home.
Step 4: If you have been approved we will put you in touch with the dog’s foster family to arrange a meeting.
Step 5: After meeting the dog we will assess the situation: how the dog reacts to you and how you react to the dog. We encourage you to take time to think about it and discuss with all members of the family. We will always adopt to the most suitable family.
Step 6: If all parties are in favour of the adoption arrangements will be made for you to bring your new family member home. Be prepared by purchasing food, bed, toys before he/she comes home. A signed adoption contract and adoption fee must be paid prior to being able to take your dog home.
Our adoption process takes the time of our dedicated and unpaid volunteers. If you are not ready and prepared to bring a dog into your home please be respectful of our time. We encourage you to apply when you are ready.
Our goal is to find a loving family for each of our dogs as soon as possible.
Foster To Adopt Program
This program is available for adult dogs that are not already placed with a foster family. If you are on the fence when it comes to adopting consider becoming a foster or doing a “foster to adopt”. You will follow our adoption process and if approved we will pair you with the dog of your choosing. Please note in your application if this is something you would be interested in.
Here is how it works!
You will pick your pup up from the airport upon arrival or arrangements for a volunteer to deliver the dog to you will be made.
2. You will be provided several nights with the dog – typically a period of 3-5 days where you are first in line to adopt your foster pup.
3. If the dog is right for you that’s great! We will require the adoption fee and contract to make it final.
4. If the dog is not a match we will ask that you continue to provide a short term home for the dog until another family is found to adopt. We would be happy to continue to work with you until the right dog is found.
Puppies - $450
Adults (1 year and older) - $400
Seniors – Case by case basis
Running a rescue is very expensive. All our dogs are transported, fed, vetted, current on vaccinations, and provided with gear (crate/leash/collar) while in foster care. Our dogs are also spayed or neutered.
It is the adopter's responsibility to only proceed with an adoption if they accept and afford the adoption fee. The adoption fee must be paid in full (no instalments) and is non-refundable. Payment can be made via cash or e-transfer. All gear required for your new pet must be provided by you, the adopter. The rescue’s gear is re-cycled and used for new dogs entering foster care.
Health documents for your dog are provided to you when the adoption fee and signed contract are received.
Out of Town Adoptions
Home visits are a requirement for every adoption. We have few volunteers located throughout the lower mainland. If we do not have a volunteer in your area we are unfortunately unable to facilitate our adoption process. We are based in Vancouver Canada and are currently accepting applications as far east as Abbotsford and as far north as Squamish (with few exceptions). We will expand our areas hopefully as we continue to grow.
All dogs are sterilized prior to adoption
All dogs are vaccinated against Rabies, Distemper, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Parvo, Parainfluenza, and Corona
Dogs are provided Bravecto for flea/tic treatment and de-wormed prior to travel.
Training and Basic Understanding of Dog Behaviour
A basic understanding of dog behaviour is needed when it comes to helping make the transition to a new home as smooth as possible. We require all our adopters to commit to attending professional training with their new pet within the first 30 days of adoption. We feel it is very important for pet owners to educate themselves on fair and firm leadership and use appropriate corrections and rewards. Here are some basics to get you started on the right path.
When we talk about exercise we don’t only mean physical - we mean mental too! Be prepared to give your dog opportunity to run and play. Also be ready to offer your dog the chance to work that awesome mind through training, problem solving and other fun challenges. A dog that is mentally and physically tired is a well-behaved dog.
We stress the importance of socialization for puppies and dogs as it is paramount in their development. Meeting other dogs builds confidence, teaches them boundaries and appropriate behaviour, and makes future meetings with other dogs a pleasant thing for you.
It is also important to socialize your dog with all types of people too (children, men, ect) – this helps develop both confidence and comfort levels. Appropriate forms of socialization include dog parks, walking, day care and more.
If the dog you are adopting has socialization issues speak with our dog behaviorist Monika for guidance and one on one help.
This term means training your dog to enjoy and accept being kenneled. Often, new dogs are trained to go in their crate when you are not at home or at night – however, you must understand that your end goal is to limit the time your dog spends in a crate to as little as possible: eventually you want to be able to leave your dog to roam your house without cause for concern.
The proper amount of time a dog can spend in a crate while training will depend on age, breed, energy level. This time spent in its crate will also dictate the level of exercise if needs daily, as well as the amount of mental stimulation it will need.
Boundaries, Discipline and Love
You will want to establish firm and fair rules the moment your dog comes home and stay consistent. This includes ensuring that everyone in the house is following the same rules. You will want to provide love, affection and treats when the rules are being followed. We suggest clicker training and positive reinforcement when it comes to training.
Bringing your new Dog Home
Proper Identification is critical as dogs may be a flight risk until they make the connection that your home is THEIR home. Before you have the opportunity to get an engraved tag you can wrap tape on your dog’s collar with your phone number and name.
We recommend you purchase 2 collars: A buckle type w/light fabric that you can write your phone number on, and a martingale collar to guide your dog where he is support to be when taking a walk or run.
For safety reasons keep the collar snug rather than loose and do not let your dog off leash until you have established re-call or are in a very secured fenced area.
Food and Nutrition
We are frequently asked what to feed your adopted pet and we strongly suggest you do you research when it comes to pet food, it really is alarming as to some of the toxic ingredients that many well-known food companies put in their food, in fact many have resulted in the death of pets. We would recommend a high quality wet or raw food over kibble and many fresh fruits and vegetables for your dog.
Here are some great resources to assist with choosing a food.
Vegetables that are SAFE for dogs include
Asparagus, bell peppers, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, green beans, celery, lettuce, pumpkin, spinach, sweet potato. Consider steaming or boiling for easier digestion.
Fruits that are SAFE for dogs include
Apple, Apricot, Banana, Blueberries, Cantaloupe, Mango, Orange, Pear, Pineapple, raspberries, Strawberries, Watermelon
Note: Some fruits and veggies are toxic – never feed onions, garlic, rhubarb, mushrooms, corn, grapes, raisins, currents, avocados or citrus fruits. Please do your research before feeding something to your pet. Many plants are also toxic to dogs.
Before surrendering we hope you will contact us first for assistance. We have a certified dog behaviorist and trainer on our team to help. When behavioral issues present themselves it is always best to address them right away.
If a pet is not working out for any reason our contract states the dog must be returned to us. We make every effort to make a good match between the adopter and pet, however if you need to return the dog for any reason please contact us. Adoption fees are non refundable.
A rescue brings so much love and laughter to a household. The happiness you are about to experience is unlike anything else in this world. Thank-you for choosing to adopt.
About a Dog Rescue Society