Please leave your pets at home to prevent disease transmission and additional stress for both your pet and the pets staying at the Utah Humane Society. If you are adopting an additional pet, we’ll be happy to discuss techniques to help you introduce your new pet to your pets at home in a careful way to set them up for success.

Adoption Process

Step 1: View available pets online.

You can see what animals are currently available for adoption, view their online profile page, and read each pet’s description. Available pet listings update almost immediately, so if you no longer see an animal on our site, chances are they’ve already found a home! Adoptions are first come, first served.

Step 2: Come meet our animals

Our Adoptions Center is open for walk-in visits 10 AM – 7 PM, every day (except a few holidays).

We only have one adoption center, which is located in Murray, Utah at 4242 South 300 West.

We don’t make appointments except in rare cases when the pet is in a foster home. The location on their profile will say “foster home”. To set up a meet-and-greet for a foster pet, call 801-261-2919 ext. 227.

Please visit our Murray adoption center in person ASAP and ask staff for more information about a pet. Staff will tell you their history and what we’ve observed about them, then set up a meet-and-greet if they seem like a good fit. You can spend time getting to know them in a room indoors, or adult dogs can be taken outside to a fenced run. If you wish to proceed, we’ll begin the adoption process. We follow Adopters Welcome, an approach to adoptions that embraces community members, encourages them to adopt, and helps them and their pets succeed.

We encourage you to bring all the people in the home to meet the adoptable pets and ensure pets are allowed where you live. Please leave your own pets at home when you visit–Do not leave your pet in the car unattended.  Meet and greets at adoption centers aren’t necessarily accurate at predicting how pets will get along in your home. Our adoption counselors will advise you on the best way to introduce new pets to any resident pets.

If you find that the pet you originally came to meet isn’t a good fit for your home, we may have others that are.

Adopters must be 18 or older and have a valid photo ID with their current address.
Adoption fees

Step 3: Bring your new pet home!

All dogs must leave with a harness or a collar and leash, and all cats and small animals must leave in a pet carrier for their safety. You can bring these items with you or purchase them at our facility.

All dogs, cats, and rabbits have a microchip, the first set of vaccinations, and are spayed/neutered before they are made available for adoption. You’ll receive a 10% discount in our clinic for any follow-up vaccinations for a pet adopted from HSU.

Bring your newly adopted pet directly to your home after the adoption process. We do not recommend taking them to a pet store or visiting friends and family until they have had the chance to adjust: 3 Days, 3 Weeks, 3 Months
We also counsel adopters to introduce the adopted pet to other pets slowly. We strongly recommend direct supervision when playing outside during their adjustment period.

Adopters will take their new family member home right after completing the adoption process. We’re not able to hold an animal after adoption. There are pets in the back waiting to be made available and moved up to the public spaces in our adoption center.


Preparing to Adopt

Please consider these factors before adopting a pet.

Becoming a pet owner means gaining new financial responsibilities. Consider the initial and ongoing costs plus unexpected additional costs, including but not limited to:

  • Registration/Licensing
  • Collar, leash, or harness
  • Kennel or carrying cage
  • Food dish
  • Scratching post
  • Security deposit
  • Obedience training
  • Boarding/pet sitting
  • Pet insurance
  • Extra veterinary fees for emergency surgical or health issues

Ongoing costs:

  • Annual vet health check
  • Vaccinations
  • Food
  • Grooming
  • Litter
  • Toys and treats

We recommend saving for the unexpected!

Landlord Restrictions

If you lease your home, check with your landlord before adopting to be sure you are allowed to have a pet and can afford any required pet deposits and additional pet rental fees. Pets are sometimes returned because of lease restrictions and/or landlord disapproval. HSU does not conduct landlord checks for you. This can be an expensive lesson since adoption fees are non-refundable. Plus, being returned to the shelter can be a stressful experience for the animal. Also, check to see if there are any breed restrictions for your housing and insurance. Even pet-friendly housing may have restrictions on the breed and age of the pet allowed.

City/County Restrictions

How many pets are you allowed to have at your residence? Most cities and counties have a maximum number of pets that you can keep. All pets must be licensed and registered through your local animal control services. Pet owners must license within 30 days of moving into an area or acquiring the pet. Pet Limits in Utah by county and city

Other members of your household should meet the pet before you decide to adopt and approve of you bringing a new pet home. You should also consider:

  • Allergies
  • Fear or discomfort associated with animals
  • Expectations in sharing pet care responsibilities

We recommend that you do not immediately expose your existing pets to a newly adopted pet. Consider how you will manage an isolation period and be sure all existing pets are up to date on vaccinations and other routine health care before bringing a new pet home. 

Facilitating positive pet-to-pet introductions will require some management on your part. Not all pets are instant friends and may require temporary or intermittent separation to ensure a smooth transition. Some pets are happy to share their home within a week or two, others may take a month or longer to adjust. Our adoption counselors will be happy to review steps to properly introduce your new pet to your resident pets. 

Read more helpful tips on our Animal Behavior and Training page.

For safety reasons, all dogs must go home wearing a leash and harness, and all cats must be sent home in a carrier.

All pets making the transition to a new home will need time to adjust to a new family and may require housetraining and training to correct problem behavior.

Positive reinforcement-based training is recommended for all newly adopted dogs and puppies.

 Dogs and cats may live 12 to 15 years or more, and providing them with basic needs (food, water, shelter), medical care, and loving attention is important throughout their life. Your thoughtful consideration, preparation, and commitment will help ensure a happy home for your new pet. 

Dogs and cats are social animals who prefer to be indoors with their family.

Additional behavioral resources and tips can be found on our Behavior and Training page.