How to Adopt

The Adoption Process

The San Francisco SPCA brings people and animals together. Our goal is a loving home and a lasting bond. We consider important details such as a person’s home, interests and lifestyle. We match those with an animal’s social, exercise and training needs. 

Please plan on spending at least one hour for the adoption process. We’re confident that you’ll find it time well spent—and repaid with countless hours of enjoyment.

Adoption Requirements

  • Adopters must be at least 18 years old and present valid photo ID with proof of current address.
  • We encourage or may require all household members to meet the new dog or cat prior to adoption.
  • If you have a dog and want to adopt another, a dog to dog introduction can be arranged by request.
  • Written landlord approval or proof of home ownership may be required

Puppy Adoptions

We recommend that puppy adopters attend our FREE 1-hour Puppy Parent Orientation class, which is held several times a month on our Mission campus. Classes educate adopters about puppies and set them up for success. Attend an orientation and receive 50 percent off the puppy adoption fee.

Adoptions occur on a first-come, first-served basis beginning when the Adoption Center opens (no early arrivals, please). For same day adoptions, please make sure that you sign up at the front desk before 6pm on weekdays and 5pm on weekends.

Jump to a list of upcoming Puppy Parent Orientation classes and get pre-qualified today!

Adoptions Fees

  • Standard Dog Adoption Fees
  • $175 dogs*
  • $400 puppy adoptions for people who have not attended our free Puppy Parent Orientation class (puppies under 5 months)*

*At the time of adoption, San Francisco residents pay a $23 San Francisco dog license fee.

Standard Cat Adoption Fees

  • $125 cats over 5 months 
  • $200 kittens under 5 months (fee waived for 2nd kitten adopted within 30 days)
  • All cats 7 years and up (seniors) have fee-waived adoptions!
  • Adult bonded pairs have fee-waived adoptions!
 
The Life of Riley Fund
Supporting free adult dog adoptions for seniors! The Life of Riley Fund encourages people over 65 to easily adopt animals from the SF SPCA by underwriting adoption fees for seniors. Additionally, the fund will match adopters first year of enrollment in the Sido program. 

Pre-Adoption Paperwork

Planning to adopt a cat? To save some time, please fill out and print the Cat Adoption Profile and bring it with you to one of our Adoption Centers.

Planning to adopt a dog? To save some time, please fill out and print the Dog Adoption Profile and bring it with you to one of our Adoption Centers. 

New Adopter Assistance

  • The SF SPCA provides a free first medical exam at either of our veterinary hospitals for new adopters who adopt from the SF SPCA or one of our Bay Area rescue partners. The free medical exam is a health examination only. Guardians are responsible for post-adoption expenses related to medications, vaccines, diagnostics or treatments.
  • An appointment for the first free medical exam must be made within three days of adoption and proof of adoption is required.
  • Download our Cat Adoption HandbookKitten Adoption HandbookDog Adoption Handbook, or Puppy Adoption Handbook.

Ready To Adopt?