Adoption Procedure/Application

General information

Adoption Procedure

Thank you for your interest in adopting from the Sacramento SPCA. We are now offering adoptions by appointment only.

We are extremely grateful to our community for your excitement and willingness to adopt a shelter pet during this time. We appreciate your patience and support as we transition to an appointment-based system and continue to explore new ways to streamline the adoption process.

Step 1: Application Submission Process

  • View adoptable pets on our website. Here you will find information about each animal; including their name, breed and age.
  • Fill out the Virtual Adoption Appointment Registration Form and note which pet you are interested in adopting. We are currently experiencing a high volume of adoption applications for most pets. Submitting an application is not a guarantee of adoption.
  • An adoption counselor will contact you to update you on the status of your application and the pet. Adoption applications are being processed in the order they are received. Once a pet has been adopted, all applicants will be notified by email.

Step 2: Phone Adoption Counsel

If your application has been selected, an adoption counselor will call you to review all behavior and medical notes we have for the pet. Many of the pets on the website are currently in foster homes, which provides us with additional information about the pet in a home environment.

The adoption counselor will be happy to provide information on care and answer any other questions you might have.

Step 3: Finalize the Adoption

If you decide you’d like to proceed with the adoption, you will be given an appointment to meet the pet at the shelter, finalize the adoption process, and take your new pet home.

The specifics for your in-person appointment will be provided during your phone appointment with an adoption counselor, including where to park when you arrive to the shelter, required ID and acceptable forms of payment.

Adoptions staff will be wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and adopters are asked to please wear a mask or face covering when visiting the shelter and to practice safe social distancing. If you do not feel well, please stay home.

Adoption Hours

By appointment only. Please fill out the Virtual Adoption Appointment Registration Form to begin the adoption process.

Adoption Fees

All dog, cat and rabbit adoptions include the spay/neuter surgery, microchip, age & species-appropriate vaccines, and a certificate for a free health exam at VCA Animal Hospital within the first fourteen days after adoption.*

Dogs & Puppies

  • Puppies (under 7 months of age): $175
  • Adult Dogs (over 7 months of age): $110

Cats & Kittens

  • Kittens (under 7 months of age): $85
  • Adult Cats (over 7 months of age): $45

Small Animals

  • Rabbits: $25
  • Guinea Pigs: $25


Questions about adoption? E-mail us at

Seniors Program

The adoption fee is waived for seniors over the age of 65 adopting an animal five years or older. A 20% adoption fee discount will be applied for seniors adopting an animal under 5 years of age, with the exception of puppies.  (Puppies under 7 months of age do not qualify for a discount.)

Have questions about pet adoption for seniors? E-mail us at


*It is your responsibility to set up an appointment with a designated VCA Animal Hospital. Call as soon as possible so that your scheduled appointment falls within 14 days after the adoption of your pet.

As a part of our partnership, VCA provides complementary treatment for some common diseases and conditions to get your pet started on the right foot. A list of these diseases and conditions is provided upon adoption.  Any disease or condition not covered or not mentioned in this list will be treated within the 14-day guarantee period at 25% off VCA’s regular prices to be paid by you as the new adopter. After our 14-day guarantee period, all fees for medical care will be at regular cost. Please note that Wellness and Preventive Care will not be covered, which includes (but is not limited to) Heartworm prevention, flea medication and wellness fecals.

The 14-day Health Certificate Coverage you receive through our partnership with VCA Animal Hospitals are another value-added service we provide with each of our adoptions. We believe that adopting a pet should be a lifetime commitment and proper healthcare, along with good nutrition and positive reinforcement training, will ensure that you and your pet will enjoy many happy years together.