Adoption Policies

Adoption Process [JUMP TO POLICIES]

  1. Complete our adoption application with the name of the dog you are applying for.

    Have you previously submitted an application for a different dog? Unless your information has changed, simply send us an e-mail to let us know which dog you’re currently interested in.

  2. We review all applications for each dog to make a decision about which home best suits the dog’s needs.

    All applications will be considered in determining the best situation for each dog. Completing an adoption application does not guarantee that you will receive the dog you are applying for, and American Bulldog Rescue reserves the right to reject any application as we see fit.

  3. We will call the personal and veterinary references you listed on the application then contact you to schedule a home visit.

    These checks are performed to ensure that you have a history as a responsible pet parent. For previous or current pet owners, we check your vet references to be sure your pets are up-to-date on mandatory vaccinations, heartworm testing and preventative, and regular wellness exams. We <strong>must</strong> be able to confirm a history of yearly wellness visits, that your pets are/were current on vaccinations (rabies, DHLPP, etc), yearly heartworm testing, and <strong>use of monthly heartworm preventative</strong>.

  4. After successful completion of the home visit, you will schedule a time with the dog’s foster family to come meet the foster dog.

    Applicants are expected to travel to the foster family’s home to meet the foster dog. Please note this is an initial meeting to help determine if your family and the dog are a good match. Either you or the foster family can halt an adoption for any reason. We hope, however, that it will be a good match and that day you’ll be able to go home with your new pet!

  5. The adoption will be finalized with you signing the adoption contract and providing the adoption donation.

    Our standard adoption donation is $450. If a dog has a different donation amount expected, it will be noted on their bio page. You will be provided all the medical records for the dog and mailed a copy of the completed adoption contract.


Our dogs are placed into family situations only within the United States. We do not place dogs for the purpose of guarding or fighting or breeding.

Minimum requirements for adopting from American Bulldog Rescue are:

  • All applicants must be at least 25 years of age
  • All current pets must be spayed and neutered
  • Participation in formal obedience training and socialization sometimes required
  • For current or previous pet owners, responsible ownership must be demonstrated by a history of annual wellness visits, mandatory vaccinations, heartworm testing and preventative.
  • Dog must live INSIDE as a member of the adopter’s family
  • Must live within a reasonable travel distance to the foster family and be willing to travel to and from the foster home. In general, we look for a maximum 4 hour radius from the foster home.
  • If you rent, we require a letter from your landlord giving you permission to keep this breed of dog on the premises and there are no insurance problems.

If you do not meet these minimum requirements, please wait until your circumstances change before applying to adopt.

 NOTE: Some insurance companies may cancel your homeowner’s insurance if you own an American Bulldog, Pit bull, Rottweiler or Doberman. It is the responsibility of the adopter to check with their agent prior to adopting one of these breeds to make sure doing so will not adversely affect their policy.

Additional Terms and Conditions

  • American Bulldog Rescue is under NO obligation to adopt an animal to any individual.
  • Unless otherwise noted, an adoption donation of $450* is expected when you receive your dog.
  • Upon adoption, copies of all available records will be provided to the family. All animals are spayed or neutered prior to placement, are current on vaccinations, de-wormed if appropriate, on heartworm preventative and flea and tick preventative.
  • An adoption contract is required when the animal is placed.
  • We cannot place dogs in homes with children under 10 unless that dog has lived with kids or is in a foster home with kids.
  • We cannot place dogs in homes with cat unless that dog has lived with a cat or is in a foster home with a cat.
  • We prefer that our dogs go to homes with securely fenced yards.
  • If a home does not have a fenced area, the adopter must agree to keep the dog on a lead/leash at all times while outside.
  • We do not place dogs in homes using e-fences.
  • We do not place dogs in homes that use any form of tie outs.
  • Puppies not yet housetrained will only be adopted to homes where they can be let out every two-three hours and have someone with them most of the time.
  • Dogs are temperament tested by our volunteers/foster homes and their health and temperament monitored prior to placement but we can make no guarantees. Animals in foster care and adopted out by American Bulldog Rescue are not warrantied for health or behavior/temperament and not released until the dog’s health permits. This includes spay or neuter surgery.
  • Dog licenses are the responsibility of the adopting family.
  • We do not transport dogs to an adoptive family. The family must be willing to travel to the foster family’s home and travel with the dog back to their new home. In most cases, dogs from the south region are adopted only in that area and same with the north region.

Please be advised that we are volunteers. We all have full-time jobs, families, and animals of our own. Many of us work more hours doing rescue work than we do at our full-time jobs. While we make every effort to process applications and return phone calls immediately, this may not always happen. Please, be patient with us. Emergency medical calls and calls about the safety of our animals take priority. Application processing time averages 2-4 weeks depending on the volume of applications received and the presence of puppies on the website.

Why the adoption donation?

Rare is it for a dog to come into any rescue requiring no veterinary care at all. We receive dogs through shelters, some of which provide only the basic vaccinations needed. Other shelters perform the full array of wellness testing and vaccinations, but may not offer spay/neuter or other needed surgeries. Dogs from shelters tend to have been neglected or living as strays and have a variety of issues such as heartworm disease, mange, entropian, lyme disease, etc.

On average, a foster dog in our rescue requires more vet care than what is covered by our adoption donation. We rely heavily on the generosity of donors to sustain our privilege of helping dogs. Below are some standard charges associated with the most common needs of our foster dogs.

Office Visit$50-75
Rabies shot$15-20
DHLPP shot$15-25
Heartworm, Lyme, Ehrliccia$40-65
Heartworm Preventative$11/month
Spay or Neuter$300-500
Teeth Cleaning$275-500
Urinary Tract Infection$75-200
Heartworm Treatment$700-1000
Luxtaing Patellas$1500-3000 per leg
Cruciate Surgery$1800-3000 per leg
Entropian Surgery$250-500
Demodectic Mange$100/month
Boarding$300/month per dog