You Want To Be a New Pet Owner. Now What?

Clear the Shelters
More Clear the Shelters

Help WETM-TV 'Clear the Shelters!' We hope you come out on Saturday, August 17 and adopt a furry friend! 

Adoption fees are waived at participating shelters, on August 17 only, pending application approval. Other fees may still apply.

Here’s a list of participating adoption shelters in the Twin Tiers:

Adoptable Pets Animal Care Sanctuary Animal Care Sanctuary Facebook Image Map

animal_care_sanctuary_info

The Animal Care Sanctuary is a no-kill sanctuary with locations in East Smithfield and Wellsboro, Pennsylvania. Our mission is to provide a safe and caring refuge for companion animals, inspire change through education, provide adoption services, and support spay/neuter initiatives.


Questions about adoption? Contact the shelter:

Emily Shaffer, Adoption Coordinator
P: (570) 596-2200 x101
E: eshaffer@animalcaresanctuary.org

To be sure the process is smooth, please bring all veterinary records the day of Clear the Shelters, as most veterinarian offices are not open on weekends. Without veterinary records of current furry family members, we cannot complete a same-day adoption. Get ahead of the game and fill out an application a few days prior to arriving and we will work to get you preapproved. 


Help us Clear the Shelter! Adoption applications can be found here and submitted for pre-approval beginning July 18th. If you already have pets in your home, please include proof of current rabies vaccination for each pet. If you rent, we will need confirmation from the landlord that the pet is allowed in the home.

Applications can be brought to the shelter or emailed to admin@chemungspca.org. All adoptions are pending an approved application.


Adoptable Pets Pet Finder ChemungCountySPCA Image Map

Please help us to clear our shelter on August 17!  Adoption fees will be waived for all of our cats and dogs who are 5 months of age and up.  A special reduced adoption rate will be applied to kittens and puppies (under 5 months) for the Clear the Shelters event.  All adoptions are pending an approved application. Our adoption process is not difficult; it is aimed at ensuring that you and your cat or dog are good matches will have a long and happy future together. 

We strongly encourage you to come in ahead of the event to submit your application early and especially to spend time getting to know available animals.  We will start accepting applications specific to this event on August 7th.  If you rent, we will need confirmation from the landlord that the pet is allowed in the home.  If you already have pets in your home,  a meet and greet may be needed.  Also, providing confirmation of basic veterinary care provided your animals is helpful to the process.     

Adoption Application

Questions about adoption? Contact our shelter: 607-776-3039  11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Mon, Tues, Wed, Fri and Sat  - Closed on Thurs & Sun

Applications can be brought in to the shelter. All adoptions are pending application approval. 

A portion of our adoptable animals can be viewed by clicking here

Finger Lakes SPCA FLSPCA Facebook FLSPCA Twitter Image Map


Pawz & Purrz Animal Rescue can be found online and on Facebook.  As a fostering program, we don't have a physical location, but for Clear the Shelters this year, we will be appearing at the Tractor Supply in Painted Post.  We have both dogs and cats available for adoption, however adoption fees will be waived for cats and kittens only.


Questions about adoption? Contact:

Vicki Eichenlaub
P: (607) 329-5839

Please fill out your application online first by August 15 to be pre-approved by Clear the Shelters day and make sure that your veterinarian is aware that we will be calling to verify existing pet vaccinations are up to date. 


Cats at Stray Haven may be adopted same day with approved applications. Please bring your proof to show you may have pets if you rent. You can meet and pet all of our Cats in the Community and Kitten Rooms. Your adopted cat will already be spayed or neutered, FeLV/FIV tested negative and up-to-date on essential vaccinations (Rabies, distemper combo).

We look forward to introducing you to our shelter dogs in the Multi-Purpose Room. This environment helps the dogs focus on meeting their prospective new family and enjoy the meet and greet.  Completed Dog Adoption Applications can be reviewed within 1 day. If you rent, please bring your rental agreement allowing pets to speed your application. If you have a dog, we will need to schedule a meet & greet for the dogs, please call ahead to arrange your time (your dog's proof of vaccination required). Your adopted dog will be spayed or neutered, up-to-date on essential vaccinations (Rabies, distemper combo, bordatella) and microchipped. You will also receive a personalized engraved pet tag.

Adoption fees will be waived, all animals may be adopted for spay/neuter fee only.  We are also offering "Name Your Adoption Donation" on our long term residents.

Adoption Form

Questions about adoption? Contact the shelter:

P: (607) 565-2859
E: adopt@strayhavenspca.com


Phone: 607-257-1822 ext. 221
Email: adoptions@spcaonline.com

The Tompkins County SPCA will only be waiving the adoption fees for kittens and adult cats. The Tompkins Co. SPCA will also be offering rabbits and guinea pigs during the Clear the Shelters Adoption Event. 

Click here to print an adoption application.

Driving Directions:

  • Route 13 North
  • Drive 2.8 miles Past Triphammer Rd. Exit
  • Turn right on Hanshaw Rd.
  • Proceed to Stop Sign; Turn right
  • Drive .75 mile; SPCA on right


You’ve seen that doggie in the window and fell in love — but you’ve never raised a dog before. Or a cat. Or a hamster. You’ve never even had a bowl of goldfish as a kid. 

Like any other major life changes — and adding to the family is a major life change — aspiring pet owners-to-be have a laundry list of considerations and preparations that need to be made before Fluffy can come home to stay. Rachel Maso, the senior manager of behavior at the ASPCA Adoption Center in New York City, breaks down what you need to know before, during and after adoption for anybody thinking and wondering “…now what?”

I’m thinking of adopting a pet, but I’ve never owned a pet before. Help!

If you are thinking of adopting and raising a pet for the first time, Maso recommends taking a hard look at your lifestyle and budget to see what type of pet companion would be the best fit for you. Larger dogs may cost more to raise than smaller dogs; cats may be the better companions for a frequent workaholic with little time to spend walking a pet around the block.

“Consider your activity level, amount of time spent at home and the types of activities you would enjoy doing with your new pet,” Maso says. Flexibility and an open mind to other pets can help ease first-time pet owners into the adoption process.

The size of a pet does not have to stop you from adopting if you, like many other pet owners, live in an urban shoebox. The amount of space a pet needs depends more on its energy level and personality than its size.

“Some dogs may benefit from living two streets down from a great dog park; others may show no interest and will prefer a nice, quiet walk around the block followed by a long day of napping,” Maso says. For cats, plenty of spaces to climb, jump and leap will make up for a lack of square footage in your home.

Should You Adopt a Dog? This Flowchart Will Help You Decide

What else do I need to know before I adopt?

Sudden allergies are just one of several reasons why pets are turned over to a shelter by their owner. And pet allergies are common — they hit approximately 5 to 10 percent of the population, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

A visit to the doctor to determine any pet allergies is a must for first-time pet owners that have had limited access to animals before adopting. Don’t think you’re safe from allergies if you adopt hairless breeds either. Reactions can develop in the presence of saliva, urine or dander.

Surprise bills and unexpected costs are another reason that owners might surrender their pets. Use the tool below to get an idea of how much a pet might cost to raise over its lifetime, and if that number is within your or your family’s budget.

(Don’t forget that adopting on Aug. 17 could mitigate some of these costs as hundreds of shelters around the country will waive or discount fees as part of the one-day adoption drive.)

What are some myths to know about as I decide on the kind of pet I want to adopt?

Glad you asked. Here are four:

  • The age of a pet does not determine how affectionate it will be with you.
  • Shelter animals are not necessarily given up because of a troubled past. Ask the shelter for a pet’s background or known issues if you are unsure.
  • Species does not determine energy level. Cats play just as much as dogs do.
  • The space of your home does not determine the size of your pet. Large dogs can be happy with smaller backyards and homes depending on its (and your) personal needs.

What are my first steps to becoming a great pet owner?

Your home is pet-proofed, your budget is sound and your pet is ready to start a new life with a new family. Make sure you check off the following:

  • Get your pet spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and microchipped. Most shelters will do this as part of the adoption process with the fee you pay, Maso says, but for pets that aren’t, this is a great time to…
  • Get to know your local veterinarian or pet clinic (and get your pet those booster shots.)
  • Designate a short-term pet caregiver in case of emergencies. Think of them as the godparent for your pet.
  • Stock enough emergency pet food and supplies to last for two weeks.
  • Research and prepare a plan for severe medical emergencies. Keep a list of phone numbers and addresses accessible in case your pet gets sick.

What should I do once they’re here?

The most important thing right after you bring your pet home is to give it some space and time to get used to its new home and new surrounding. Maso recommends setting up a safe, quiet space in your home or apartment for your pet.

Dogs should have a kennel or crate with its door left open.

Cats should have a box or carrier on a shelf, cat tree, or any space that’s elevated in your home.

“For the first few weeks, focus on relationship building and establishing routine,” Maso says. “Try to create a consistent schedule and have everyone in the household participate in activities that your new pet loves.”

What if it doesn’t work out?

Things happen. Surprise bills, health concerns, barking, hyperactivity, aggressiveness and personal emergencies are all reasons that an owner might have for giving up a pet. Shelters around the country took in over 3 million pets alone in 2018, according to Shelter Animals Count.

But don’t be quick to get rid of your new pet early on over behavioral bumps that could be fixed with some time, space and support. “Animals, just like people, need time to adjust to new surroundings and environment,” Maso says. “It may take some animals months to settle in completely.”

Rehoming – having another family take your pet in – is another humane option if an adoption does not work out. If all else fails, check in with the originating shelter.

Sounds great. I’m ready to adopt. Where do I go?

We got you.

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Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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