Adoption Process - Nashville Humane
Find all the information on pet adoption with Nashville Humane here.
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Pets Adopted in 2019

Adoption Process


The adoption process at NHA is friendly, educational and rewarding!  Animals come to us looking for a forever home, and we make certain to give them their best shot.  All animals in our Adoption Program, while at NHA, receive spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, and veterinary treatment.  And of course, lots of love!


Now, it’s your turn to love them forever.  Noticing that we use the word “forever” a lot?  Well, it is really important to us that our pets find a permanent home!  Therefore, adoption applicants are carefully screened and must meet adoption requirements prior to taking your new furry friend home.

Now here comes the hard part – visit with our wonderful cats and dogs and try to pick just one!  NHA Pet Service Representatives are available to provide advice on selecting the best match for you and will schedule a Meet & Greet between family members (including those with four-legs) and your prospective pet to help you determine which animal will best accept your lifestyle.


The next step is to fill out an Adoption Application. After the staff reviews and approves your application, it’s on to signing the adoption contract, paying the fee, and taking your new lucky cat or dog home!

Adoption Fees


More than 4,000 animals come through Nashville Humane Association’s doors every year. Each has a different story to tell. Some are found as strays, while others are surrendered by owners who can no longer care for them. Hundreds are rescued from animal cruelty cases, and even more have traveled hundreds of miles from under-resourced shelters for a second chance.


But no matter how they got here or where they came from, they’re provided with basic needs, individualized medical treatment, behavioral rehabilitation when necessary, protection, and most importantly love.


How adoption fees are set?


We use a variable fee schedule to assign adoption fees. This fee schedule takes into account the animal’s age, breed, and size.


Some types of dogs and cats are less common and have a higher demand, so their fee might be higher. Other types of dogs and cats are more common, are older, or have special needs. A variable fee structure that assigns higher fees to certain high-demand animals ensures we have the funds to provide for other animals that have special needs and/or a more difficult time finding a new home.


Adoption Fees at Nashville Humane Association generally range from $85-$225 for dogs and puppies, and generally from $45-100 for cats and kittens.


Scalable Pricing


There are, however, some special exceptions that are made from time to time regarding our general pricing structure detailed above. NHA will use a scalable pricing structure for these “outlyer” situations. As an example, some special needs or longer stay animals have reduced adoption fees. Because cost of stay and care can be expensive at the shelter, we want to encourage an expedited adoption for some pets. There are also pets that have had their adoption fee “sponsored” by a generous donor, so their adoption fee is basically “free” to the public.  Then there are also certain high-demand animals that have much higher adoption fees, this is a rare occurrence but it does happen from time to time. Because we anticipate that these “special” cases will be high-demand adoption animals, the adorable yorkie puppy who will be adopted in 5 minutes gets to help save the senior pibble who has been at the shelter for months. We use these higher fees to off-set the costs of care for all the animals at the shelter. Remember, NHA is an entirely gift-based not-for-profit we like to be creative from time-to-time when it comes to how we raise funds, and a scalable adoption fee is just one of those methods. Ultimately, these are all exceptions to the rule. For 99.9% of our animals at the shelter, Adoption Fees at Nashville Humane Association generally range from $85-$225 for dogs and puppies, and generally from $45-$125 for cats and kittens.

Adoption Requirements


Be 18 years of age or older


A picture I.D. showing your present address


The knowledge and consent of your landlord (if applicable)


Ability to spend time/money necessary to provide training, medical treatment, and proper care for a pet


Adopt a Dog
Adopt a Cat

IMPORTANTThe Nashville Humane Association reserves the right to refuse adoption to anyone. No animal will be adopted to prospective owners who mislead or fail to provide accurate information on the application.