Puppies for Adoption: How, and Where to Adopt a Puppy

​​Shelter Dog

Puppies for adoption are available all-year-round at animal shelters and rescue groups on Petfinder.com, a great place to begin a search on where to adopt a puppy.  Meeting the puppies in-person helps decide if a large, medium or small size, or breed matches your home, lifestyle, and activity level.

How to Adopt a Puppy

When you choose to become a puppy parent through an animal shelter or rescue group, you’re choosing to help end pet homelessness, and at Petfinder, you’ll find step-by-step guides on the process of dog adoption as well as how to find, feed and care for a new puppy.  To get you started on how to adopt a puppy, follow these 5 steps to bringing a puppy home.

  1. Begin a search for puppies on Petfinder in your area.
  2. Contact the puppy’s shelter or rescue group member to learn about availability and adoption fees.
  3. Visit the adoption organization and spend some time with the puppy.
  4. Complete the adoption application and once it’s approved,
  5. Bring your new puppy home.

Where to Adopt a Puppy

Now that you’ve made the important decision to welcome a new puppy into your family, finding out where to adopt a puppy in your area will be your next step. You’ll find hundreds of caring adoption organizations at your fingertips when you search Petfinder for adoptable puppies.

Bringing a new puppy home is an exciting time, rewarded with wonderful memories and a lifetime of companionship, and shelters and rescue groups are able to help perfectly match dogs to new adopters, and dog parents to new pups.

There are two types of adoption organizations to contact for finding your best bud, both serve the same mission to reduce pet homelessness, save lives and place pets into loving homes. Whichever group you choose to work with, both shelters and rescue groups are wonderful resources when considering where to adopt a dog or puppy.

Animal Shelters

  • Have a dedicated facility in which they house and care for their pets.
  • May have lower adoption fees and shorter adoption processes.

Rescue Groups

  • Usually a network of individual, volunteer foster homes (generally do not have a dedicated adoption facility).
  • May specialize in a specific breed of dog, or may work with all breed types.


Petfinder: Adopting Puppies and Kittens

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6 Questions to Ask before Adopting a Puppy

There’s nothing more exciting than bringing a new puppy home, and because adding a dog to your family is a lifetime commitment, it’s a good idea to ask the adoption organization a few questions about your puppy’s health and behavior, amongst other things.

To help you with answers, take a look through The Comprehensive Guide to Adopting a Pet, and then compose a list of questions that are important for you to understand your puppy. At the top of your list  you could include the following:

  1. What vaccinations has the puppy had?
  2. Has the puppy been tested for heartworm?
  3. Is the puppy dewormed, spayed, neutered, microchipped?
  4. Are there any medical issues with the puppy?
  5. What is the organizations return and rehome policy?
  6. Does the organization have post-adoption support?

Search for Puppies to Adopt

You’re ready to take your first steps into adopting a puppy. All the support you need to raise a healthy, happy puppy is at your fingertips, so let’s get started and SEARCH FOR PUPPIES HERE.