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Please refer to the below for answers to our frequently asked questions. 

If you have questions concerning training or medical, please contact a training facility or (your) veterinary office.
We are unable to answer individual questions. 


  • Before you apply....
    Please make sure you understand that you are applying for a SHELTER DOG. A dog whose past is unknown but his future depends on you. Your adoption donation is NON REFUNDABLE! After 30 days there is a $75 surrender fee and you will have to wait until a foster or boarding facility is available. ​ We CANNOT and WILL NOT guarantee anything about the dog you want to adopt! We will ALWAYS disclose everything WE KNOW, but ultimately it is YOUR decision to adopt him or not. UNDERLYING medical conditions, genetic problems, parasites are just a FEW of the issues that could arise from adopting a shelter/rescued dog. We save their lives sight unseen based on brief descriptions of their interactions with shelter staff and volunteers. Please only proceed if you fully understand the commitment you are making.
  • How does your Adoption process work?
    Please take a few moments to read the following explanation of our adoption policies and the steps that make up the process. You may be surprised to find that adopting an animal is a more involved process than you expected, or that it means you can’t have immediate access to an animal you are interested in. Therefore, it’s important to understand two things: (1) the process is the same for every-one, and (2) it is not our intent to frustrate you. Rather, everything we do is for the best interests of the animals in our care, and is aimed at giving them the best possible chance of finding a permanent home. Our adoption success rate is quite high and we are quite proud of our program and its standards. This is because our main concern is finding happy endings for the dogs in our program. HERE ARE THE STEPS YOU’LL GO THROUGH IN THE ADOPTION PROCESS: Complete an online application Before you can adopt any animal, we ask you to complete an adoption application. You can submit an application for a dog in their profile or on the "Our Dogs" page. Our process includes asking questions, asking to see proof of identity and, frequently, asking for veterinary references, particularly when you have other animals at home. This is simply to protect the health of adoption candidates and the pets you already have. Application review Once all the application has been submitted, it will be reviewed by one of our volunteers. We will contact you to clarify any questions we may have and assist in setting up an appointment at a volunteer’s home or be invited to an adoption event where a knowledgeable member of our volunteer staff will be available to answer questions about behavior, training, veterinary care, how to deal with introductions to current pets, and anything else you can think of. Adoption Contract and Adoption Fee You will be asked to sign an adoption contract and pay an adoption fee. This fee covers spaying or neutering (unless on a medical / senior waiver), veterinary care, deworming, vaccines, food, and other items your pet has received while in our care. LET US REPEAT We don’t ever mean to be frustrating to or evasive with you. We want you to understand that it’s stressful and upsetting-in fact, downright devastating – for the animals, for our volunteers, and most importantly, for you when adoptions don’t work out and pets have to come back to us. And a bad adoption experience can sour some people on shelter animals — for life. So try to bear with us and be patient. Understand that going through the process the way we do really is the best policy – for all of us.
  • Can you hold a dog for me?
    We cannot hold animals for anyone. Unfortunately, because of the tremendous demands on our foster homes, all adoptions must be done on a first-come, first-served basis, and the first good, properly-qualified prospective home will get the pet.
  • What are your adoption fees?
    Our adoption fee is outlined below: Most Puppies: $600* Most Adult: $400 *If the dog is not altered at time of adoption, a $100 deposit is required and refunded to you after proof of spay/neuter is submitted. It must be done no later than the contracted time or we will not reimburse you.  Adoptions fees CAN vary from dog to dog so check the specific listing for the dog you are interested in. Again, read your contract because our software automatically disburses the unclaimed funds and we cannot reimburse you after the contracted time.  Many low cost spay/neuter programs are available including Friends of Animals nationwide program. You can visit... to learn about low cost spay/neuter and to find a vet in your area. Also Nutmeg clinic (New Haven) Westerly Clinic The adoption fee includes: Shots up to the date of adoption Dewormers Vet check up Spaying/neutering when available. All vaccinations and medical care after adoption become the responsibility of the adoptive family. Please do not text our volunteers with training or medical questions. Contact a training facility or veterinary office. 
  • Do you assist with vaccinations and medical care after the adoption?
    All vaccinations and medical care after adoption become the responsibility of the adoptive family.
  • I live in Massachusetts. Why can't I adopt from you?
    We understand the frustration, and we promise you it is nothing personal! Unfortunately, we cannot adopt to Massachusetts residents due to the MA Department of Agriculture laws.
  • Our adoption isn't working out. What's your return policy?
    We understand things happen. You have 30 days to return your dog if you feel like it is not a good match. Please note: You will NOT receive a refund. Your adoption fee is a donation to our non-profit organization. At our discretion, we may offer you a chance to choose another dog by paying only a health certificate fee of $50. After 30 Days: After 30 days, there is a $75 surrender fee, and still no refund. For detailed explanation of our policies, please read the adoption contract. Please do not text our volunteers with training or medical questions. Contact a training facility or veterinary office.
  • I still have questions. Can I talk to someone?
    Please reach out via email to donations AT or message us on Facebook. All dogs available are posted on the website. We do not take in owner surrenders.
  • Heartworm Disease
    Every dog, 6 months and older, is tested for heartworm at the originating shelter upon intake. Your dog was tested NEGATIVE using a Snap Test. Heartworm is transmitted by a mosquito bite and it takes up to 6 months for it to grow to detectable levels. That means your dog can test negative today and positive tomorrow. It will depend on the stage of the disease. We do not cover the costs of Heartworm Treatment after adoption. We recommend you enroll on pet insurance if adopting an adult dog. Heartworm tests are recommended every six months. Heartworm is not contagious to humans or other pets. It is transmitted from one dog to another via an infected mosquito. Heartworm treatment can be expensive and will vary from 1 to 4 thousand dollars depending on the vet and weight of the dog. Heartworm can be prevented by a monthly medication like Heartguard, Simparica Trio and others.
  • Low Cost Spay and Neuter Options
    POASPAY.ORG (between $150 - $275) They only book ONLINE, no phone calls! There are no special discounts / special conditions for our adopters. Keep checking their portal! ​ ​ NUTMEG clinic (between $150 - $300) ​ Your veterinarian will cost anywhere from $300 to $1000 . We HIGHLY recommend you ask for a realistic estimate before booking it. If you left a spay and neuter deposit with All Paws on Deck, please check your contract for deadlines. We are unable to refund deposits after the contracted time. ​ Your contract was emailed to you with your adoption documents from SHELTERLUV.
  • My vet recommended we wait until our dog is X months (or years) old to spay/neuter.
    Every vet is different. You are adopting a rescued dog from a shelter. We have contractual obligations to provide proof of alteration from pets we rescue. According to the AVMA: Early spaying of female dogs and cats can help protect them from some serious health problems later in life such as uterine infections and breast cancer. Neutering your male pet can also lessen his risk of developing benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlarged prostate gland) and testicular cancer. The procedure has no effect on a pet’s intelligence or ability to learn, play, work or hunt. Some pets tend to be better behaved following surgical removal of their ovaries or testes, making them more desirable companions.
  • Is our dog microchipped?
    Our adoptables are microchipped with Fi NANO. It is registered to you automatically at checkout. In case we have forgotten to microchip your dog, please contact us and we will do it at no crate or provide you a microchip so you can do it at your vet's office.
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