Adoption Information

How does the adoption process work?

A person who wants to adopt through SPDR begins by carefully reviewing SPDR’s Terms of Adoption and filling out the online Adoption Application. The application will be sent to the appropriate Breed Rep(s).

What is a Breed Rep?

A Breed Representative (“Breed Rep”) is a person who has first-hand knowledge and experience with a particular breed. He or she is responsible for evaluating dogs of their specific breed for adoptability, and screening prospective homes for that breed, in order to make the best match possible. SPDR has Breed Reps for approximately a hundred different breeds.

How soon can I expect to be contacted by the breed rep(s)?

On average, you should be contacted within ten business days after submitting your application.

What happens then?

A Breed Rep’s goal is to find the most suitable homes for dogs of her breed. Not every home is right for every breed of dog. The Rep will review your paperwork, and possibly contact you to ask additional questions, in order to determine whether she thinks her breed would make a good pet for you. If the answer is yes, she will give you information about currently available dogs. If no dogs are currently available that meet your needs, she will put you on a waiting list. If the answer is no, she will give you her recommendation about what other breed(s) of dog might better match your situation.

Where do these dogs come from?

Purebred dogs handled by SPDR typically come from two places: Private individuals who need to place their dog into a new home for various reasons, and dogs surrendered to Puget Sound area shelters. When the Breed Rep contacts you about an available dog, you may be referred directly to a private individual, or to a specific shelter. Breed Reps also have dogs in temporary foster care, and you may be referred there to visit the dog

What happens if I am referred to a shelter dog?

If SPDR receives notification from a shelter about a dog that matches your request, the Breed rep will refer you directly to that shelter. You would be required to go through that shelter’s approval process, and if approved, would adopt the dog directly from them. Most shelters can only keep dogs in their care for a very limited time–an adopter notified about a dog in a shelter should act promptly.

How long will I have to wait to adopt a dog?

The timing varies, depending on the availability of the breed(s) you have requested, and/or the specific adoption characteristics you are looking for. The more specific an adopter’s requirements are, the longer it will take to find a dog that meets them. An adopter who wants a black female longhaired German Shepherd under six months of age will probably have a much longer wait than another adopter willing to consider a German Shepherd of any age, sex, color and coat type. Likewise, SPDR might see 30 German Shepherds available for adoption one year, and only 6 the next.

In short, it is often impossible to tell… however each Breed Rep should be able to give you his or her best guess about this. Adopters should expect to spend some time working with the Breed Rep to find the best possible dog for them.

What if the breed rep refers me to a dog, and I don’t like it?

Adopters are under no obligation to accept any dog referred by SPDR. If you feel a dog is not right for you, notify the Breed Rep. The Rep will continue to refer you to other likely prospects until the right match is found.

If I am referred to an individual who is listing their dog through SPDR, and I want to adopt that person’s dog, do I pay them for it?

No. Listers are not selling their dogs, they are placing them into new homes through SPDR’s referral network. If a lister expects to be paid for a dog, contact SPDR’s message line and let us know.

Terms of Adoption.

Please read our Terms of Adoption.

If you have any other questions, call our message line at 206-654-1117.