Process and Fees

Choosing the right pet will reward you and your family with years of unconditional love and companionship. We urge you to take some time to consider the type of pet that will best fit your lifestyle and to remember that pet ownership is not a decision that should be taken lightly. Owning a pet means taking on the responsibility of caring for the pet through its entire life, which in many cases can mean at least a 12-year commitment.

Adoption Process

To adopt a pet, visit the Idaho Humane Society’s main Dorman Street shelter.

View directions & hours



At our Dorman Street facility, adoptable dogs are housed in Kennel D and occasionally Kennel C – there will be signs on the doors to let you know for sure which kennels are open. Adoptable cats are housed in the Sugar Toes Cattery right off of the front desk area.

Each animal should have a card on its kennel or cage containing information about its age, breed, and personality. If you don’t see a card or if you have additional questions about an animal, you can visit the customer service desk in the kennel hallway or the front desk. Often a missing kennel card means that an animal is on hold for a potential adopter, but you can always double-check with our staff or volunteers.

The customer service desk in the kennel hallway can also supply you with a leash so you can take a dog out of its kennel and spend some time with it in a Get Acquainted Room or the shelter backyard. Puppies younger than 6 months old must stay indoors. You can pet cats in their cages or hold them inside of the cattery area.

Once you’ve decided to adopt an animal, take their kennel card to the front desk to complete your paperwork. This process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour. You will then proceed into See Spot Shop to pay for your pet’s adoption fee (see below) plus tax, a license fee (for dogs), a rabies vaccination charge (for cats) and any additional veterinary expenses you opt to have done for your pet.

All dogs are spayed or neutered before going out into the adoption kennels and can go to their new homes immediately. Cats that are already spayed or neutered can also go home immediately following their adoption. Cats that are NOT spayed or neutered at the time of adoption can be picked up the NEXT day between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. at our Veterinary Medical Center.

24-hour hold: If you’d like to adopt an animal you’ve met on the adoption floor but are not ready to take it home immediately, you can place a hold on it for a maximum of 24 hours. A $25 deposit is required to hold a pet. When you return for the animal, that $25 will be put toward the animal’s adoption fee. If you do not return in 24 hours or decide not to adopt that particular pet, the $25 will be donated to the Idaho Humane Society.

Adoption Fees


Adoption fees range from $35 to $300 depending on the size, breed, age, and condition of the animal.


  • $75 for kittens 8 weeks to 16 weeks old
  • $40 for cats 17 weeks to 4 years old
  • $25 for cats 5 to 8 years old
  • $10 for cats 8 years or older
  • Please note that pricing may vary at offsite adoption centers.

All adoption fees cover the animal’s mandatory spay or neuter surgery, first FVRCP (cats) or DHPP (dogs) vaccination, rabies vaccination and microchip for identification, plus a food sample and educational information.

You will need to purchase a license for your dog at the time of adoption. You can see the fees for each jurisdiction within Ada County here.

We offer discounts on adoption fees for seniors. You can learn more about that program here.


If the adoption is not a good fit or not working out for some reason, the adopted pet may be returned to the Idaho Humane Society within 30 days from date of adoption by the original adopter. A taxed return processing fee of $10 per dog or $5 per cat will be charged and the remaining balance of adoption fee (license is not refundable) will be refunded in the same form of original payment. All original adoption paperwork and receipt of payment must accompany the animal before a REFUND will be issued, and must be received within 30 days of adoption. If the payment is made by check a refund will be mailed to you within 30 days after the return date. This does NOT apply if the adoption fee was a donation and not a fixed adoption price.