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Shenandoah Shepherd Rescue

Po Box 764
Stephens City, VA 22655

Adoption Policy

Out-of-State Adoptions: Our primary area of adoption is within the state of Virginia, but we do adopt out-of-state. The adopter is expected to travel to us to meet the dog.
We will not ship a dog and do not offer delivery services for adoption.

Adopting a Puppy: If you adopt a puppy less than six months old, the puppy will not be spayed or neutered. You will be required to spay/neuter your puppy at six months of age. If you adopt a puppy less than four months old, you will be required to continue puppy shots in addition to spaying/neutering at six months of age.

Adopter’s Minimum Age: You must be 18 or older to submit our adoption application and adopt one of our dogs.

Current/Past pet care requirements

Required for Canine:
1. Spay/Neuter*
2. Vaccines against Rabies (required by law)
3. Annual Heartworm testing
4. DHPP/DHLPP/DH2PP (Parvo, Distemper, Hepatitis)**
5. Preventatives for Heartworm and fleas/ticks
* - Unless advised against by a veterinarian
** - If vaccines are declined by the owner, annual titer tests are required

Required for Feline:
1. Rabies Vaccine
***IF cats spend any time outside, they will also need: Distemper and Feline Leukemia Vaccines, and Flea/Tick prevention.

Adoption Fees:

Our adoption fee is $325 for dogs aged 6 and under.
Our adoption fee is $250 for dogs 7 and up.

Please make sure you've contacted your vet. They need your permission to speak to us. PLEASE VERIFY that ALL your records are present and up to date for vaccines, heartworm testing and preventatives -- this is by far the item that causes delays and issues with moving forward to approval.
Please add to your email address book to help keep our messages from going to the spam folder. If you have a question about your app status, that's the place to email to find out. We appreciate your patience, we are all volunteers, so we are working as quickly as we can.
Please be on the lookout (and tell your references too) for calls/texts/emails from unknown numbers (and check spam for unknown senders). Especially in the beginning, we communicate heavily through these methods and volunteers can have telephone numbers from all over.

There are six steps in our adoption process.

STEP 1: Submit an Application - CLICK ON THE ADOPTION APPLICATION LINK ON THIS PAGE. The application form works best on a desktop computer and is not fully compatible with mobile devices. If you must use a smartphone and have issues, please email us at for resolution.

STEP 2: Phone Call - An SSR representative will likely call you and go through your application to answer any questions that we (or you) may have. We will also ask you to do things like call your landlord, vet, and references to give them permission to speak to us regarding your application. This is a good time to ask any questions you have about SSR and the adoption process.

STEP 3: Perform a Reference Check - A volunteer will call your landlord (if applicable), as well as your personal and veterinary references.

STEP 4: Conduct a Home Visit - Following a check of your references, an SSR volunteer will come to your home. During this visit, the volunteer will need to meet all members of your household and walk through your home and yard. We will discuss the adoption process with you, answer any questions you may have, and discuss the dog in which you are interested.

After the home visit is completed, the volunteer will submit a Home Visit Report to SSR. At that time, a decision will be made to either accept or deny your application.

STEP 5: Find the Right Dog - Once you have been approved as an adopter, we assign a caseworker to you to assist throughout the remainder of the application process. Having a caseworker is optional, but it is often helpful to have someone available to answer any questions that may arise and help put you in touch with foster parents to arrange meetings with compatible dogs. A great way to meet more than one dog is to attend a local adoption event.

STEP 6: Introduce the Dog in Your Home - We understand that you may not be sure how a dog will work out to fit your family’s needs, without bringing it home first. We offer a one-week trial period to make sure the dog is a suitable family member. If you have traveled to obtain your dog, it is expected that you will return your dog in the event that it does not work out. We will hold your adoption payment for one week, to ensure everything is going well. Our goal is to place the right dog in the right home, so there is no pressure if it isn’t a match.


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