Adoption information - Adopt a pet from Panhandle Animal Shelter

General Adoption Information

When you adopt a pet from Panhandle Animal Shelter, you give that animal a second chance while also supporting programs to help pets and people in need.

How adoption works

Our friendly staff will work with you to find the right dog or cat for your home. Get started by checking our online adoption listings or stop by the shelter.

It’s important you spend time getting to know prospective pets. If you have questions or wish to visit with an animal, just ask a staff member for assistance.

If you wish to put an animal on hold you may do so for a 24 hour period by speaking to our staff at the front desk.  We do not allow holds to be placed on puppies under the age of 1 year or kittens under the age of 6 months. To adopt from PAS, you must be present and at least 18 years of age or older.

If you find an animal you wish to adopt, we’ll review the pet’s file to ensure that you and the pet you’ve selected are a good match. This will include medical and/or behavioral considerations as well.

PAS will continue to support you and your pet at home. Our website is full of information that can make your pet’s transition from the shelter to your home as stress-free as possible — including tips and details about PAS programs and services.

What your adoption fee includes:

  • A general physical examination by our veterinary staff
  • Cats – Feline Combo vaccine which protects against feline viruses Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia. Kittens may require additional vaccines.
  • Dogs – Canine Combo vaccine which protects against canine viruses Distemper, Hepatitis caused by canine adenovirus type 1 and type 2, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus. Puppies may require additional vaccines.
  • Age appropriate dogs and cats also receive a rabies vaccination whenever possible
  • Deworming
  • Flea/tick treatment (if needed)
  • Spay/neuter surgery (if needed)
  • A free 30-day trial of pet insurance through 24 Hour Pet Watch
  • Free veterinary examination by a participating veterinarian within 14 days of adoption

Animal Health:

Included in your adoption is a free health exam at a participating veterinary clinic. PAS asks adopters to have this exam performed within 14 days of adoption to ensure your pet’s health.

While our veterinary staff makes every effort to assess and report the health of your new pet, Panhandle Animal Shelter is not a full-service veterinary hospital.

Once your adoption is finalized, you will be responsible for all medical bills and decisions regarding your pet. However, if a new health problem (not noted at the time of adoption) develops within 14 days from adoption, please call our veterinary staff so we are able to review the health exam findings and recommended treatments for your pet.  If you proceed on your own and agree to diagnostics, treatment or medications recommended by your veterinarian, it will be at your own expense. PAS will not reimburse you or your veterinarian for medical expenses you may incur.

If you have questions about post-adoption care, please call our veterinary staff at (208) 265-7297 ext. 105.


Microchips can provide an additional level of identification and protection for pets that are lost or stolen — but they are not a substitute for a collar and ID tags.

Microchips are detected with a handheld device that uses radio waves to read the chip. This device scans the microchip and then displays a unique alphanumeric code that is registered with the microchip company in the owner’s name.

Shelters, animal control agencies, and veterinary hospitals are equipped with microchip scanners. Keeping the registration current is vital to ensure recovery should your pet go missing. 

When you adopt through PAS, your animal will be microchipped and registered to you at the time of adoption. If at any time you need to verify your pet’s microchip number, please give us a call.  Or, if you have the microchip number, you may also look it up through the Pet Microchip Lookup.

If you ever move, change your phone number or the animal is rehomed with another family, the microchip information will need to be updated. Please call PAS at (208) 265-7297 ext. 100 to make changes at any time. It’s free for life! You may also go to 24 Hour Pet Watch to make changes as needed.

Collars and ID tags

Nothing is more effective than a collar and ID tag to ensure that a lost pet is returned home safely.

We recommend that dogs and cats wear a collar and ID tag at all times. Having an ID tag on your pet is a crucial part of any emergency preparedness plan. If there’s an emergency you may not be able to get your pet to safety. An ID tag will increase your chances of being reunited given any situation.

Adoption Returns

Welcoming a new pet into your home can be so exciting. Your family just grew, and together, you have so much to learn! In the first week, you’ll likely start figuring out a routine, building trust, and exploring likes and dislikes. Perhaps you’ll choose to spoil your new pet, and training (and patience!) may be necessary.

For some pets, the transition is quick and easy. Others may need more time and assistance. Panhandle Animal Shelter offers a 30-day adjustment period which you can evaluate the pet’s progress and your adoption decision. If within those 30 days, you determine your recently adopted pet isn’t a good fit or you find yourself unable to provide necessary medical care, you may return the animal to PAS and receive an adoption credit certificate that can be used toward the adoption of another animal or if the animal is returned within 14 days of the adoption, you will receive a full refund.

When you need HELP!

Let us help you with your pet. If you have any questions or need advice call our Helpline at (208) 217-4453.

You can also read our Pet Resource library for tips and solutions to common pet behaviors.