Online listings are updated every day. Or visit us during our adoption hours, Monday-Sunday, 12-6 pm, and business hours are Monday-Friday, 9 am-5 pm.

Finding the right match takes time. Since the adoption process can take 60-90 minutes, we are unable to begin new adoptions past 5:30 pm. Thank you for your understanding. Want to be the first in line when adoptions opens at 12 noon? Early sign-in is available at the reception desk Monday-Friday beginning at 9 am.

Animal Availability

We cannot guarantee the availability of particular animals, and we do not place animals on hold. Our available animal listings are updated daily.

If an animal is not located at our adoption center, it will be noted on their individual profile with details about how to meet them. If you are interested in a dog or cat who is noted to be in a foster home, please email [email protected] to get more information and set up a time to meet them.

What to Expect

When you arrive, sign in and complete a matchmaker profile form. Next, you’ll talk to an adoption counselor who will introduce you to shelter guests who may be a good fit.

Our skilled team is here to assist you in finding a new family member. During your visit we will share information about their health, behavior, and the post-adoption resources we offer. This can take time, so please allow 60-90 minutes for the adoption process. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Want to save time? Download the matchmaker profile and bring the completed form with you. 

We encourage the entire family to participate in the adoption process, including children. If you are looking to add an additional dog to your family, we encourage you to bring your dog with you to meet their new canine friend. Our team can provide a room for your dog to safely wait while your family meets potential new pups.

We want to help you find the right companion for your family and lifestyle. Potential adopters are able to meet up to three available shelter guests during the adoption process. Since this process can take time, we are unable to accommodate multiple meet and greets for new adoptions beginning at 30 minutes before closing.

Adoptions are on a first-come, first-served basis. Availability of particular animals cannot be guaranteed.

Policies and Requirements

Adopters must be 18 or older with valid photo ID (photocopies of ID are not accepted).

Adoptions are on a first-come, first-served basis. We adopt to the first good match and cannot place animals on hold. If you are interested in a specific dog or cat, please check our website, which is updated daily. Adoption updates may also be found on Twitter at @ARFadoptions.

You must be able to meet the animal in person at our headquarters in Walnut Creek, California. If you cannot travel to our campus, we encourage you to contact a local shelter or rescue to adopt an animal who needs a home.

Adoption hours are Monday-Sunday, 12*-6** pm, and business hours are Monday through Friday 9 am to 5 pm. 

* Early sign-in is available Monday-Friday beginning at 9 am. Anyone on the sign-in sheet who is not present at 12 noon will lose their spot in line.

** Finding the right match takes time. Since the adoption process can take 60-90 minutes, we are unable to begin new adoptions past 5:30 pm. Thank you for your understanding. 

For the safety of the animal when leaving our adoption center, adopted cats must be in carriers and dogs must be on leash and collar.

Please note: Our team cannot guarantee the breed of any animal.

What’s Included / Adoption Fees

All animals are spayed or neutered, current on vaccinations, microchipped, de-wormed, and given flea/tick preventative. Animals are sent home with a welcome home supply of Purina food.

Dogs 6 months and older are tested for heartworm, and all dogs are started on heartworm preventative. Puppy adopters are offered a discount on puppy social classes. 

All cats are tested for FeLV, and all cats older than 6 months are tested for FIV.

Adoption Fees

Free adoptions on Tuesday, September 26!

Cat – $100
Special-Needs Cat – $50
Senior Cat (7+ years) – $50
Kitten (< 6 months) – $175
Special-Needs Kitten – $100
Two Kittens – $300
Two Cats – $150

Dog – $150
Special-Needs Dog – $75
Senior Dog (7+ years) – $75
Puppy (< 6 months) – $375
Special-Needs Puppy – $200

Adoption fees are always waived for U.S. military Veterans.

Select animals have their adoption fees sponsored by generous admirers. Sponsor an animal.

Learn more about our adoption process.

Early Sign-in

Early sign-in is available at our reception desk beginning at 9 am on Monday-Friday (not available on weekends.) You may give your information, and the name(s) of the animal(s) you are interested in, to reserve your spot in line for when adoptions begin.

Anyone on the sign-in sheet who is not present when adoptions begin at 12 noon will lose their spot in line.

Adoptions are on a first-come, first-served basis. Availability of particular animals cannot be guaranteed.

Post-Adoption Resources

Did you adopt an animal from ARF and need help with a medical, behavioral, or other question?

Contact our team

  • Behavior and training helpline: (925) 296-3159 
  • Clinic reception: (925) 296-3125

Return Policy

Returns are by appointment only. View more information about our return policy.

Please submit return request to make an appointment to schedule a time to bring your companion back, so our team can ensure appropriate space and housing availability.

More Animals Available From Private Homes

Didn’t see any available dogs and cats that you wanted to meet? New animals become available for adoption several times a week. 

Check out the courtesy listings for animals available for adoption directly from individuals or other rescue groups. We provide these free listings to help more animals find loving homes, and keep pets from entering shelters.

Please check back to see new faces looking for loving homes or set up an email alert through or to get notifications when an animal matching your criteria becomes available. 

Shop Lou Russa’s Boutique

Located conveniently in the heart of our adoption center, Lou Russa’s Boutique has all the basics, bells, and whistles for those with great taste — on two or four legs! Open during our adoption hours, our knowledgeable staff will help you find everything you need for your new companion before you leave, so you don’t have to make another stop. 

With some of the lowest prices of any pet store in the area, all proceeds benefit our lifesaving programs for animals and people.


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