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Q: Do You Think Adoption Fees Are Too High?

December 19, 2008 | By Diane | 52 answers | Expired: 2086 days ago

Diane

I came across this comment & it made me wonder...
"The shelter charges way too much to adopt a pet, thats why they are full. I know they have costs to cover for caring for the animals, but I think there would be a higher adoption rate if it wasnt so darn expensive. The only ones suffering the high cost is the animals and its awful!"

Do you think this may be the reason some people refran from adopting?

Readers' Answers (52)

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Joelle  T.
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Jan 02, 2009

To tell you honestly buying a dog from a breeder is also very expensive. Our local shelter charges around $80 dollors to adopted a dog. Both our two dogs we got from a breeder were alot more than that 4 years ago. So I really don't think they are asking to much.

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Chris F.
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Dec 30, 2008

I find many people think because the word "humane" is in our shelter's name, that we must do everything without a cost. We try to keep our adoption fees reasonable, but we do have to cover some of the costs involved in putting the animal up for adoption. Our shelter spays/neuters all the dogs, cats and rabbits before adoption and I remind customers that they could never get an animal fixed for the cost of our adoption. Breeders have very high costs and getting an animal "off a farm" or a "free ad" still has costs involved. It is a frustrating comment but one we hear often. We just keep doing the good work we know we are doing and ignore these types of comments.

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Michele N.
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Dec 25, 2008

I volunteer at a local humane society and can tell you that the fees are NOT too high. If you go to a breeder, you'll have sky high fees, plus run the risk of buying from a puppy mill. Additionally, the first few shots will run you mega bucks. Usually a shelter dog is socialized already and you will have the satisfaction of knowing you've given an animal a loving home that didn't have one before. PLEASE adopt from a shelter before you go to a breeder.

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Vinny C.
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Dec 23, 2008

When you take into account all of the back end costs that shelters have to provide prior to adopting an animal I don't feel the fees are high at all. The spay/neuter cost alone is usually not covered in the adoption fee so in reality it's a bargain. We're not even taking the animal him/her self into the equation - again that's worth the price of adoption alone.

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EddieWayne
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Dec 23, 2008

Probably if the shelter didn't charge a fee we would adopt more animals. Our base fees for kittens - cats is $25 -50.00. Dogs will run from $45 - 60 with certain dogs having a higher fee. Sometimes I think our adoption fees for cats are too high but when we explain to people that their vets costs will be higher than that, they realise what a bargain $50 is. The cheapest vet in town charges $60.00 to spay a cat. So right there the person has saved $10.00. Our cats are tested for leukemia, worms, given their shots and are spayed and neutered. That costs approximately $150.00. The fee also weeds out adopters that are spur of the moment or don't have funds to properly care for an animal.

Now I have to admit when I rescue a cat on my own (not as a shelter volunteer), I can usually place it faster because I don't charge a fee. But I do screen very carefully and keep in touch with the adopters until the cat is fixed and has shots. I also offer to take the cat back if it doesn't work out.

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Lisa
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Dec 22, 2008

I feel that most rescues have reasonable adoption fees considering all the vaccinations, microchipping and spaying or neutering they do with the animals. But I saw one recently that blew my mind. A $1,200 adoption fee for a male Solomon Island Eclectus. I was at a loss for words after seeing that. That poor guy is probably going to wait a long time on a new home.

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Kate L.
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Dec 22, 2008

I do not think they're too high. In some cases, high adoption fees screen out those who cannot truly afford a dog or cat. I volunteer at a shelter that charges $45 for dogs during major adopt-a-thons and people have literally adopted dogs just because they're "so cheap," even though they had no intention of getting a dog before they saw the sale price. One person saw a dog and, without even playing with it or seeing it outside of its crate, said "Only $45 dollars? I'll take that one." Obviously not the type of well thought out decision you'd expect from a responsible potential owner.

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Jeff K.
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Dec 21, 2008

I thin when it gets up around $400 its way to high, heck I think over $200 is to high but I relize these shelters have alot in vet bills. I don't think its so much that families can't afford the adoption fee as they think its just to high for a adoption. They feel they may as well go to a breader for the same price.

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SchnauzerFan
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Dec 21, 2008

I hit submit accidentally.
The other point I wanted to make is that if the adoption fee gets too high, people will just go to a breeder or pet store. If the goal is to get these good, needy dogs into homes and out of shelters, the price needs to be attractive enough to draw people out of the pet stores.

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SchnauzerFan
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Dec 21, 2008

I would say that many shelter fees are too high. Although price shouldn't necessarily be a factor, when one shelter is asking $50 to $100 and then other shelters are asking $400 or more, most people are going to go to the lower cost shelter. Around here, there are very few low cost shelters, they are usually town pounds and not rescue organizations/shelters. The average adoption fee around here is $400.
I realize that often there is a high adoption fee to pay for costs, medical expenses, etc - but it can be prohibitive for adopting families. Especially in this economy right now.
We are fostering a dog, her adoption fee is $300. We have decided to pay half of the fee should the right family come along - between it being Christmas and a rough economy, we'd rather help pay the fee and see her go to a good home. Instead of making a donation to the shelter, we will help our foster get into her forever home.

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