Adopt a Dog

Are You Ready to Adopt a Dog?
ARF works hard to ensure that the dogs we rescue will be placed into a suitable permanent home. Here are some requirements for potential adopters:

  • 18 years or older
  • Minimum 4-foot fence around your entire yard ?
  • Your current pets are spayed/neutered
  • Plan to adopt the dog into your own home ?
  • Have never neglected or abused an animal, or surrendered a pet to a shelter, rescue organization or Humane Society
  • Compassionate, with realistic expectations of newly adopted pets ?
  • You have read, understand and agree with our position on dog training ?
  • You are prepared to enroll in the mandatory FREE training classes with one of our partnered, reward-based training facilities ?
  • Financially able to care for your pet  ?
  • Abide by relevant municipal bylaws ?
  • Time for your pet, including for training and socializing ?
  • Crate suitable for the size of dog you will be adopting ?
  • Permission for animals in your home ?
  • Willingness to supervise children and animals at all times ?
  • Consent of all household members ?
  • Up-to-date vaccinations for current pets ?
  • Panoramic photos of yard (for out-of-town applicants) ?

Adoption Process

Every ARF adoption begins with an online application. But what happens after you apply?

  1. Screening Interview: Pre-approved applicants are contacted by email to arrange a phone interview with one of our volunteer Adoption Screeners. This interview will take at least 30 minutes.
  2. Foster Home Match: If the screening interview is successful, ARF will contact the foster home. If the foster home feels there might be a match, the foster home will contact the applicant to schedule a meeting in their home.
  3. Foster Home InterviewThe applicant and all members of the applicant’s household (of all ages, including non-related members, such as boarders or renters) must attend an interview in the foster family’s home. The applicant will be asked to bring any other dogs living in the home as well.
  4. 24 Hour Wait Period: 24 hours after the initial meeting, the applicant contacts the foster home to advise if they are still interested in pursuing the adoption.
  5. Day Visit: If the foster home agrees that the dog and applicant are a potential match, a day visit will be arranged for the dog to spend a day (no overnights) in the applicant’s home.
  6. Permanent Adoption: When the dog is returned to the foster home, permanent adoption can be discussed. Applicants will be asked to go home and think about it overnight. Final approval of adoptions is at the sole discretion of the foster homes and is based primarily on the best possible match for both the dog and the adopter. We ask that all potential adopters respect the foster homes’ decision.
  7. Training: When you adopt a dog from ARF, you are required to attend training classes with one of our partnered reward-based training facilities. We have partnered with several local reward-based trainers to offer all adopters free training classes to help set the entire family up for success.
  8. Follow-Up: In order to ensure your relationship with your ARF dog is a successful one, an adopter can expect a follow-up email within 3-6 weeks of adoption. You will be asked to fill out a short, post-adoption questionnaire and email it back to us. This email is not intended to interfere or disrupt the new family, but to offer support to ensure the transition with the new pet is a smooth one. We have also collected a number of resources to help you adjust to life with your new dog
  9. Out-of-Town Adoptions: We do facilitate out-of-town adoptions and have modified our process a little to accommodate. The initial visit and the day visit will be scheduled for the same day, with a brief break between to allow both adopter and foster home time to decide if this is a good match. There will still be an overnight wait period before final adoption can be discussed, so we will ask adopters to either spend the night in Calgary or come back into Calgary the next day. We do not ship our animals. Please research training facilities near you and be prepared to discuss them with the telephone screener or foster home.

Please note: We cannot guarantee the size or breed of our dogs.


Sibling dogs and multi-dog adoptions:

ARF does not adopt sibling dogs or young dogs who have been in the same foster home for an extensive period of time into the same home. Additionally, we do not recommend adding a second (or third) dog to your home within a short period of time. We encourage all adopters to take the time to bond and form a strong relationship with their current dog(s) and ensure that their training is at a satisfactory level. Without this bonding opportunity dogs may learn to rely on and take cues from the other dogs instead of their humans, which can potentially lead to behaviour problems in the future. In regards to sibling dogs or young dogs who have been fostered together for a period of time, research shows that young pups who continue to reside together have increased incidents of behavioural problems as their bond to each other may interfere with the proper hierarchy within the household.

Adoption Fees

  • Dogs under 4 years: $450
  • Dogs over 4 years: $350

Your adoption fees include spay/neuter, a microchip or tattoo, the first round of vaccinations, de-worming and mandatory training sessions with one of our partnered reward-based training facilities. We also provide adopters with a  follow-up email and we encourage adopters to contact us if they are experiencing any difficulties with their newly adopted dog.

**NEW** We are proud to provide all dog and cat adopters with a 6-week trail of pet insurance through Petsecure.


Please note: Adoption fees are non-refundable. Should an adopter become unable to keep an animal, they must contact ARF who will endeavour to remove the animal as soon as possible; however, no refund will be issued.

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