How to Adopt Your Next Pet

Thank you for exploring adopting from the Windham County Humane Society! It is our goal to help you find the right match.

Every pet adopted from WCHS comes with a lifetime promise. If for any reason you can no longer care for your pet, he or she is always welcome to come back to WCHS. Note that adopters must be 18 years old or older.

Here is how the adoption process works:


Keep an eye on our website

You can see all the pets available for adoption either on our website in the Adoptable Animals section, or by visiting our facility in Brattleboro, Vermont. The WCHS website is linked to our own Animal Database so it is always up to date. We also post information on upcoming transports on our Facebook Page.

Visit our Facility

When you see an animal on our website that looks right for you, come down for a face to face introduction! Our friendly, knowledgeable staff and volunteers will help you choose a pet that best matches your preferences and lifestyle. Plan to spend at least 30 minutes interacting with any pet you are considering adopting. Staff and volunteers are happy to answer your questions about the pet’s health and temperament. We believe an open, honest conversation is the best way to match an animal with a home. Our approach is based on Research from the ASPCA.

Already have a pet in your home?

If you are planning to adopt a dog and you already have a dog in your home, we are happy to schedule an introduction between the two at the shelter prior to adoption if that is helpful. We do not do cat introductions at the shelter as it is too stressful for the cats. We do introduce our in-house dogs to dog savvy cats in the shelter to get an idea of how a dog might do with a cat. However, the shelter environment is so different from a home that it is not a good indication of what will actually happen in a home. Read this guide introducing your new dog to your home.

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Putting a pet “on hold”

You may place a 24 hour “hold” on an animal available for adoption for a fee of $25. The hold fee is non-refundable and will be credited towards the total adoption fee. You must meet the animal in person before placing a hold on or adopting an animal.

Sign the adoption agreement

Once you have found your match, we will sign an adoption agreement together and we will provide you with your new pet’s medical records, pet care information, one month’s free pet health insurance, an id tag, a certificate for a free veterinary exam, and other goodies.

Take your pet home!

Congratulations! You are now a proud pet owner and we thank you for giving your pet a second chance at a happy life! It’s a big deal to add a member to your family, and we know our adopters are so excited about adopting that sometimes it can be hard to admit when there is a problem. We are available to make the transition go smoothly, so please don’t hesitate to call us with questions or concerns. We might have an easy fix to the issue or can provide other support as it may take weeks or even months for a new pet to settle in. And if it doesn’t work out for whatever reason, we are here to help if you need to bring your pet back to WCHS to find a better match.

Adoption fees

Puppies (under 6 months): $450
Small Breed Adults (under 25 pounds): $300
Adult Dogs (over 6 months): $200
Senior Dogs (over 8 years): $100

Kittens (under 6 months): $250
Adult Cats (6 months – 8 years): $100
Mature Cats (over 8 years): $30

Small Animals
Ferrets: $50
Rabbits (includes spay/neuter): $50
Guinea Pigs: $20
Gerbils,Hamsters, Mice & Rats: $10