How to Adopt

The Adoption Center

The Irma Baker Lyons Adoption Center was built in 2011, and has the ability to house up to 95 dogs and 175 cats. Up until our furry residents find loving homes, staff and volunteers provide them with quality care and enrichment daily.

The adoption site has three outdoor play yards, and walking trails to meet with and interact with available dogs. Our available cats reside in the "Cat Condos" or in one of the four group housing rooms. Two indoor meet and greet rooms are also available for meeting animals!

How to Adopt

1. Visit the adoption center!

Visitors are welcome to stop by at any point during our open hours to meet with our adoptable pets! Any animals listed as "Available" or "Pending Medical/Taking Applications" are eligible for meet and greets, walks, or solo play time, and visitors are welcome to meet with as many available animals as they would like. Staff is also able to assist with and supervise meet and greets between resident pets and shelter animals to make sure everyone in your home will get along!

2. Fill out an application!

Once you know who you want to adopt, ask a staff member for an adoption application to complete. This application is to help us learn a little more about the lifestyle your new pet would have so we can ensure they are a good fit for your home!

3. Start the adoption process!

After your application is approved, staff will go over our adoption contract, medical records, and microchip details for your newly adopted pet. Please be sure to bring your photo ID!

The adoption process from start to finish can take up to one hour or longer. We recommend allowing yourself plenty of time when visiting for adoption.

Check out the ASPCA site for helpful tips before adopting!

Adoption Fees

Our adoption fee structure is based on a variety of factors including age, size, temperament, and length of stay. This variable fee structure allows us to ensure financial security for companions in need of severe medical or behavioral care. Each animal's adoption fee is located under their individual profile.

All animals adopted from WHS will be microchipped, spayed/neutered*, and up-to-date on all age appropriate vaccinations and deworming. Adoption fees help to cover these costs, and ensure that your pet receives any additional medical care they may have needed during their stay with us!

With every adoption you get a free sample bag of food, and a certificate for a free brief health exam with a local vet! We recommend bringing your own leash, collar/harness, or carrier for your new pet to be sure they get home safe and sound. Cardboard carriers and temporary leashes are available at an additional cost, and we do carry a limited inventory of collars, harness, and leashes for retail purchase.

*Puppies and kittens too young to be spayed or neutered will require a refundable $100 deposit. Your deposit will be refunded to you at the completion of their surgery.

Adoption FAQs

What does "Unavailable" mean?
Any animal listed as "Unavailable" is currently unavailable for meet & greets or adoption.
Take a look at what all of our different statuses mean.

  • Unavailable / 72 Stray Hold: This animal was brought to us as a stray and is unavailable for adoption currently. We place every stray animal on a 72 hold so that their owner may reclaim them.
  • Unavailable / Waiting for Spay/Neuter Surgery: This animal is waiting to have their spay/neuter surgery and is unavailable for adoption currently.
  • Unavailable / Pending Vaccinations: This animal is waiting to receive required vaccinations and is unavailable for adoption currently.
  • Unavailable / Pending Medical Assessment: This animal needs a little extra care before going to their forever home and is unavailable for adoption currently.
  • Available: This animal is ready for their forever home! Stop by during public hours to meet them.
  • Available / In Foster Home: This animal is currently in a foster home, but available for adoption. Contact us to set up a time to meet them.
  • Seeking Foster Home: This animal is available for adoption and is a great candidate for a foster home if you can't commit to adopting right now.
  • Taking Applications: This animal is unavailable for adoption currently, but we are accepting applications.

What does it mean if I sponsor an animal?
When you sponsor an animal, your donation contributes to our operations fund so we can provide medical care, spay/neuter, food and love to our animals. A post will be made to our Facebook page to give this animal some extra recognition to potential adopters!
Click here to sponsor an animal!

Why are all of your dogs listed as a "Mixed Breed"?
The vast majority of dogs who enter shelters are mixed-breed animals - which actually means they are not any breed. A dog's appearance is largely controlled by a small number of genes - only about 2%. In a study done by the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, dog experts were only able to correctly identify the breed of an animal one in four times. The experts in this study included veterinarians, breeders, and trainers.
We want visitors to see each dogs' individual personality and charm that is not defined by a specific label. Just like people, every dog is unique and special in their own way!
Our knowledgeable staff is here to help you find your perfect companion.

*For puppies and kittens that are not of age to be spayed/neutered, there is a refundable $100 deposit that must be paid. Our friendly staff will help set up an appointment to get your pet spayed/neutered. Once your pet has been spayed/neutered by your vet or our preferred clinic, we will refund your deposit!
**Check out our Community Cat Program that helps feral or unsocialized cats get fixed and returned to their home territory, or adopted out as barn cats!