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Adoption Requirements
In addition to a Meet Your Match color, each dog is assigned a level one through five to help describe his or her individual needs. A level one dog is suitable for nearly all households, while a level five dog requires a home with additional experience. The criteria for each level are below.

Level One & Two Dogs
  • Adopters must be 21 years old with valid photo ID, or be 18 with a co-signer.
  • All adults in the household must agree on the adoption (written consent is OK).
  • Adopters must provide proof of compliance with all applicable laws/regulations in their county of residence (such as vaccine & licensing requirements).
  • If adopting a puppy 5 months old or younger, someone must be home to meet its minimum house training needs (puppies can not be left alone more than 1 hour longer than their age in months).
  • Renters must provide written permission from their landlord to bring the animal home along with acknowledgment that any applicable fees/deposits have been paid.
  • Adopters must not have a history of ordinance violations, losing, giving away, selling, or having animals injured or killed by moving vehicles.
  • Adopters may be asked to provide non-family references and/or proof of employment or source of income.
  • Any application for an animal that will be kept outside or inside/outside will require a home inspection.
  • Dogs will not be adopted exclusively as guard dogs.
  • Adopters must meet any applicable special needs requirements for the animal.

Level Three Dogs
Level one and two criteria plus:
  • Staff will make the determination about whether the dog/puppy is a good match for the children/other dogs/other pets in the household.
  • Attendance at a behavioral class may be required.

Level Four Dogs
Level one through three criteria plus:
  • Dogs/puppies must be indoor pets only – no outside dogs.
  • Adopters must attend a behavioral training class.
  • A meet & greet between the new dog & existing dogs in your household is recommended.
  • Adopters must be 21 years old.

Level Five Dogs
Level one through four criteria plus:
  • Adopter must be a Loudoun County resident.
  • All family members must meet the dog & attend a behavioral training class.
  • Adopters must agree to a mandatory home check.
  • Adopters must have experience owning dogs in the past.
  • Adopters must provide a written reference from the veterinarian who cares/cared for their other dogs.

High Risk Dogs
High risk dogs are defined as being at risk for use in illegal or nefarious activities. Level one through five criteria plus:
  • A meet & greet with other dogs in the household will be required.

View the adoption application for dogs. Please note that applications must be submitted in person at the Animal Shelter or on the mobile adoption vehicle. Applications cannot be accepted via fax or email.

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