V.I.P. Program

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Some Very Important Pets (V.I.P.s) help take care of other pets here at the shelter through our V.I.P. Program. Read why adoption rates vary on our FAQ page.

The Humane Society of Utah is a 501(c)(3) private nonprofit organization that does not receive any tax dollars or government funding and is not a branch of any national organization. It is funded solely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses and foundations, and supported by sponsorships, grants, bequests, investments, proceeds from its retail outlets and some fees for service. Adoption fees do not cover the expenses an animal may incur during their stay at our shelter. It costs an average of $30 per animal per day to cover food, shelter and veterinary care. Some animals do not require much veterinary care while others may require substantial resources to help them find a new home. 

Because our goal is to try and help as many animals find new loving homes as possible, we may increase the adoption fees for certain animals that are in higher demand: purebred, specialty or smaller breeds, puppies, kitties, or even animals with special needs. We usually receive numerous requests to adopt these V.I.P. pets. Their higher adoption fees help to cover the costs of some of their less-desirable shelter mates who may have to stay with us for a longer period of time.

Example: We receive a purebred puppy from an owner who recently purchased the animal from a pet store but realizes they cannot care for the puppy and surrender it to the Humane Society of Utah. This puppy is given a V.I.P. adoption fee up to $400 and is adopted within one day. That $400 helps to cover the expenses for another older dog who required surgery and months in foster care and an older cat who stayed at the shelter for months before having its adoption fee waived. Adoption fees are basically donations to help all of the animals in our care receive the love and attention they need before finding a home of their own.

If you're lucky enough to adopt one of these Very Important Pets, know that you've helped save the life of more than one pet!

We know our shelter animals are PRICELESS and we're here to serve the community through all our programs and services. Thank you for choosing to adopt and not shop.