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Our Featured Cleveland, OH Partner:

Cleveland Animal Control

Dog adoption saves lives. Adopt a dog and you'll have a friend for life! Contact us, or contact another local humane society, animal shelter or SPCA.

Pets at Our Shelter:

Cities, Towns, and/or Counties We Serve:

We are located in Cleveland, Ohio. We have adopted dogs to 13 different states also.

About Our Shelter:

Cleveland Animal Control (CAC) AKA City of Cleveland Kennel is located at 2690 W. 7th St. Cleveland, OH 44113. Public hours are Monday through Saturday from 10am-3pm. CAC is part of the city’s Division of Public Safety headed by Martin Flask, who reports to the mayor of Cleveland, Frank Jackson. It is a completely different entity from the Cleveland Animal Protective League (the APL) or the Cuyah...oga County Animal Shelter (the County). It is a holding facility, whose mission is to reduce the number of stray and unwanted animals in the city of Cleveland by enforcing City animal ordinances and by referring low cost spay/neuter services for Cleveland residents. Impounded dogs are held for 3-10 days for their owners to reclaim them. Highly adoptable dogs are transferred to either the Cleveland APL (1729 Willey Ave., Cleveland) or the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter (9500 Sweet Valley Dr., Valley View) for adoption.

Our Adoption Process:

Here's a little about how things work:
Most of our urgents are looking for a foster home, as the kennel has only a very limited adoption program (restricted to dogs who are spayed/neutered). An urgent that is not available for adoption would need to become the responsibility of a rescue (after they agree) in order to leave the kennel. So, we will need to connect you with a rescue in your area in order to go through the process to foster. Once the dog is in the foster home and fully vetted, there is always the option to adopt the dog directly from the rescue after he/she leaves the kennel. We have had many adopters that have partnered with rescues to save dogs from us. Since September 2011, we have successfully connected over 900 dogs with fosters and rescues. Many of those dogs are now in their forever home with their foster family. Many others were adopted by other families, and their foster home continued fostering for the rescue.

What does it mean to foster?
As CAC Volunteers, our role is to link fosters to rescues. Once a dog is in a foster home, the rescue is responsible for seeing the dog through to adoption. This includes medical care and anything else the dog may need. If the dog does not work out in your home, he/she would have to go into boarding, which costs the rescue $20-30/day. Most rescues do not have the financial resources to cover that. Due to this, fostering is a big commitment. It requires the foster to be flexible and tolerant while a dog adjusts to a new home environment. Dogs need structure, exercise, and affection as they build trust in you and adjust to your home. We don't have any history or background on the dogs that come to CAC. The temperament test (SAFER) is a snapshot of who the dog is at that given time. The dog may exhibit different temperament issues after leaving the kennel and becoming comfortable in your home. If there are issues, a foster should be prepared to work with their foster dog through training(most rescues have a desired trainer they work with), at the cost to the rescue.

Direct Adoption Overview: The kennel does not permit out of state adoptions (if you don’t live OH, you may be able to foster-to-adopt through a rescue, in which case the rescue’s process and fees apply). The possibility for Ohio residents to adopt directly from CAC depends on if a dog is healthy enough to be spayed or neutered. If a dog has kennel cough that is concerning to the kennel staff, they will likely require him or her to go through rescue (which could be a foster to adopt situation), get fully vetted, get 100% healthy, altered and then adopted. Direct adoptions must be in person so that you can complete the paperwork and pay the $61 fee in cash. That fee includes the spay/neuter, license, and a microchip. Dogs that need to be altered cannot be picked up from the kennel until after they have been spayed/neutered. The spay/neuter surgery is not scheduled until you have completed the adoption paperwork and been approved to adopt. So adopting an unaltered dog requires that you make two in-person trips to Cleveland Animal Control.

About Our Dogs: Our dogs are strays and we cannot make any guarantees with regard to behavior, temperament or health of any CAC dog. We do not know what kind of home environment they were living in (i.e. with kids, other dogs or other cats), nor do we know if they are house trained. Everything we know about them is based on volunteer and staff observations. It is very hard to tell with certainty whether or not a dog will be good with kids, cats or another dog. If you have kids in the home or another dog, we do require that they be present for a meet and greet with the dog you are considering for adoption.

Heath/Vaccinations: Dogs that are adopted directly from the kennel need to go to your personal vet within 24 hours of leaving the kennel. They do have their DHPP and Bordetella vaccinations, are dewormed once and have a microchip. They will need boosters for the vaccinations in the weeks following adoption and will legally need a Rabies shot if the kennel is out of stock. They generally have not been heartworm tested, and testing them is critical because heartworm can kill. Heartworm treatment can be expensive. In addition, unfortunately many of the dogs do get kennel cough. This is not something that is contagious to people at all, but dogs that do have it will need to be on an antibiotic. Something for you to consider is whether this vetting is something that you would be comfortable doing and able to afford. It is a little different than adopting from a rescue. Rescues fully vet the dogs prior to adoption and then have slightly higher adoption fees.

Considerations: Adopting a dog is a lifetime commitment. The cost of food, toys, veterinary care, grooming and other items can easily reach $400 or more per year. Many CAC dogs are untrained. You must be prepared for house-training (potty training), and dealing with normal behavior problems such as chewing, barking, digging, etc. Things for you to consider include the financial and emotional commitments required in owning a dog.

Here is a little more information:
These dogs are at a municipal government holding facility. Dogs only have between 3-10 days depending on cause for intake before they are at risk of being euthanized. From the moment they come in, they are urgent. There is no pull fee to rescues for unaltered dogs, and most dogs receive $50-$100 in sponsorship pledges via our FB page for each dog. The pledges go directly to the rescue AFTER dogs leave the kennel, to help cover vetting (money for a dog going to rescue never passes through the hands of CAC or the volunteers). In addition, dogs at the Kennel received their DHPP and Bordetella vaccinations, are dewormed, and microchipped. The Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter and The Cleveland Animal Protective League pull from CAC several times a week. The dogs we list cannot go there due to age, sickness, injury, minor temperament issues, or usually solely based on their breed. Although more than half our intakes on any given week may be bully breeds, the county kennel will not take any and the APL is limited to the number they can pull. It leaves us with many dogs to list as urgents. We try our best to evaluate as many as we can, but the reality is that for every one you see listed there may be two others that are not evaluated. Until we shift the odds and also reduce intake numbers, this is all we can do. The Cleveland Kennel had over 4,000 intakes in 2011 alone.

Why should you adopt?

Dog adoption and cat adoption saves lives. Adopt a dog or adopt a cat and you'll have a friend for life! What is the difference between adopting a dog or puppy versus getting dogs for sale or puppies for sale from a dog breeder? When someone is breeding puppies, they are creating new dogs who need homes. Some people are interested in a very specific breed of dog or puppy and they think the only way to find that specific breed is to buy a dog for sale from a puppy breeder. Yet animal shelters are filled with dogs who must find homes. So rather than buying a dog or puppy for sale from a dog breeder, we encourage people to adopt a dog or adopt a puppy at their local animal shelter, SPCA, humane society or pet rescue group.