Q. How do pets come to be at Animal Aid?
A. Unclaimed and stray animals are brought to our shelters by Council Rangers from Maroondah City Council, Shire of Yarra Ranges, Wellington Council and East Gippsland Shire Council. After an animal arrives at the shelter we check to see if they are microchipped and registered. Reuniting a lost pet with their family is always our primary objective and our staff do everything they can to ensure the dogs and cats in our care head home qucikly. Unfortunately not all pets are reclaimed after their eight day holding period. If this is the case, then each animal will have a visit with Animal Aid's Vet Clinic team for a health check and our shelter staff will get to know them and their temperament so that we can rehome them with a suitable family as soon as possible.
- Unclaimed animals transferred from other Council pounds and shelters. Animal Aid has agreements in place, with a number of Councils that operate their own pound facility, to take animals to rehome as needed.
- Owner surrenders, where the animals' owner is no longer able to care for them. Unfortunately many of the pets at our shelters have been surrendered by their previous family who, for a variety of reasons, cannot look after them any longer. The majority of these animals have come to Animal Aid through no fault of their own. Their owners may have moved to a home that doesn't allow pets, or they are homeless themselves, or a new baby/child may be allergic. The fact that an animal has been surrendered to Animal Aid is not a reflection on the 're-homability' of that pet
Animal Aid is an Open Door shelter, which means we never refuse an animal in need. No matter the age, size, breed, health, temperament and condition of the pet, we will always take them in and care for them.
Q. How are pets assessed to be available for adoption?.
A. All animals undergo a vet check upon arrival, where they are vaccinated, wormed, flea treated and given a thorough once over to check for any health concerns.
All pets are given time to settle in and then have their behaviour assessed using:
- Dogs: SAFER assessment
- Cats: experienced staff assess cats sociability
Q. What is the adoption process?
A. Once adoption candidates have gone through all of the assessment stages they will be made available for adoption. When available, we will only take up to three 'holds' (details of interested parties) per adoptee. These are allocated in the order they are taken and are held for 24 hours unless otherwise agreed by our staff.
The adoption process can include:
- Supervised meet with the adoption candidates
- Participation of all family members in the adoption process
- Any existing dogs must meet the adoption dog at the shelter
- Special requirements may need to be verified, for example; fencing, etc.
Once our adoption staff are satisfied that all requirements have been met, including the adoptee being a suitable match for your requirements, the adoption can be finalised.
Q. When can I take my new family member home?
A. By law, all adopted dogs and cats must be desexed and microchipped prior to going to their new home. Therefore not all pets may be available to go home on the same day as you meet them, as they may be awaiting surgery.
Q. What post-adoption support is available?
A. We have a variety of support available post adoption. We encourage all adopters to contact our shelter staff if they have any questions or concerns once their new family member is at home with them, no matter how much time has passed. Our Vet Clinic, Grooming Salon and Boarding facility is available to all families and adopters will find discount vouchers for our business services in their adoption pack. Our dog trainer Michelle Lynn is also available to provide advice to new doggy owners and many people choose to enrol their new dog into Michelle's 10 week dog training course.
Q. What are Animal Aid's adoption costs?
Bringing a new pet into your home can include significant costs, including appropriate housing, bed, food, bowls, lead and collar, toys etc. The ongoing cost of food, veterinary care and general upkeep also needs to be considered before committing to adopt.
The adoption fee includes desexing, flea treatment, microchipping,14 day health cover, vaccination, worming and Animal Aid identification tag.
|Pets up to 6 months||$395||$200|
|Pets 6 months to 8 years||$320||$130|
|Pets 8 years +||$200||$100|
|Seniors for Seniors*||$160||$80|
*If you are a senior citizen looking to adopt a senior pet (animals eight years and over) please check out our Seniors for Seniors Program, which includes a reduced adoption fee and discounts on Animal Aid business services.
The adoption fee payable does not come close to covering the costs we incur to prepare pets for adoption. Veterinary costs, surgery, food and shelter operational costs, e.g. staff, are all part of the day to day running of the shelter while we care for thousands of animals in need. Please consider making an adoption donation when you take your new furry family member home.
Q. What are Animal Aid's Opening hours?
Q. What if I already have other pets at home?
A. If you have a cat at home and would like to adopt a dog, we can conduct a 'cat test' with our house cat to assess the dog's reaction and behaviour around cats.
If you already have a dog/s it is mandatory for a dog meet to take place here at the shelter. Please ensure your dog/s is up to date with their vaccinations as we will need to sight their vaccination card before going ahead.
For cat to cat meetings, it is impractical to conduct such a trial in our cattery due to space, the shelter environment and the likelihood that your cat will not express their natural behaviour in this different territory. However, we can provide you with suggestions and guidelines to ensure that you have the best chance of a successful integration.
For those dog owners that would like to adopt a cat we recommend that you bring your dog in to meet one of our house cats under supervision by one of our experienced staff.
Q. What if I can't bring my pet home for some time after the adoption?
A. Due to space and resource constraints, we are usually not in a position to hold an animal at the shelter here for a significant length of time, once they have been adopted. Every pen is needed at Animal Aid, so for that reason and the length of time that the animal may have already spent at the shelter, we cannot hold them for more than seven days.
Q. Will my new pet need training?
A. The dogs adopted from Animal Aid will have experienced various levels of training prior to arriving at the shelter. Additionally, some dogs may undertake some obedience training whilst at the shelter. All shelter dogs and adopters benefit from undergoing some training together. Our shelter kennels staff are available to assist your new family member settle into their new home life. Our dog trainer Michelle Lynn also runs a 10 weeks obedience training course at Animal Aid and we highly recommend all adopters enrol their precious pooch! Check out our Dog Training page.
Q. Can I adopt two pets at the same time?
A. To allow your new pet every opportunity to settle into their new home, through training and quality time with their new family, we do not recommend adopting two dogs at the same time unless they came from the same family originally. Due to the communal nature of our catteries, however, it is generally easier to select two cats that will be happy to live together.
Q. What sort of fencing will I need to adopt a dog?
A. You will need boundary, yard or enclosure fencing that is secure and appropriate for the size and type of dog. Some dogs may have specific requirements on the type of fencing they will need due to prior history or circumstance.
Q. I am currently renting and would like to adopt. What should I do?
A. If you are renting, you will need to provide a rental agreement that shows you are allowed to keep a pet in your home. This agreement must be organised prior to adopting your new family member. You can seek an agreement directly through your landlord or property manager. For more information please read the Tenants Union of Victoria 'Renting with Pets' factsheet.
Q. Can I buy a pet as a gift for someone?
A. We recommend that if you would like to buy a pet as a gift for a friend that you come and purchase a few pet accessories to give to your friend and then bring them down to Animal Aid and let them choose their special friend. The gift recipient must come along to meet the adoptee to ensure that they are a match and that both the person and the adoption candidate will get along.
Q. Do you keep a waiting list for specific breeds or if I am looking for a particular type of pet?
A. Due to the resources involved in maintaining this type of list, we are unable to offer this service, but we do recommend keeping an eye on our website to check what pets are currently available for adoption. The only exception to this rule is with small livestock such as goats, sheep etc.