Adoption Process

Our adoption process is designed to help you and the right dog find each other. Our goal is to place each dog into a permanent, safe, and loving home.

To adopt a German Shepherd Dog from us, you must:

  1. Complete an Adoption Questionnaire, either online, or hard-copy (pdf format). If you do not own your home, you must have your landlord complete the Landlord Letter.
  2. Be interviewed by an adoption counselor.
  3. Choose, and be chosen by, the right dog.
  4. Live in one of the 14 Northern California counties we serve.
  5. Allow a home visit by an adoption counselor.
  6. With our approval, sign our Adoption Agree ment, and pay the associated fee.

If you come to an Adoption Day, the process of adopting can be completed in any order; otherwise you must complete an Adoption Questionnaire before we can assist you further. Normally, all our requirements must be met. Home visits may be waived in rare circumstances. We do not adopt to homes outside of Northern California.

After we receive your online Adoption Questionnaire, we will call you to begin the adoption process. Due to our home visit requirement, we only adopt to homes in Northern California. We encourage potential adopters to come to one or more Adoption Days because that is the best way to meet several German Shepherds and to find your new companion.

If you attend an Adoption Day and choose a dog, you may be able to adopt the same day, if all adoption requirements are met. The entire adoption process can be completed on the same day, or it may take longer.

If you can not come to any Adoption Day, we will try to assist you using email, the mail, and the telephone. This will probably take longer because the people who will help you are volunteers who usually have jobs, and scheduling meetings with dogs can be complex because our dogs live in many homes and kennels.



Shala's Sojourn
Post Date: 9/14/2014 8:23:11 PM

Dear Foster Family and GSRNC, It's been almost one year! I’ve been meaning to write for quite some time. The truth is; I’ve had nary a free minute as my paws have been so busy working and playing and swimming and hiking and exploring the Shenandoah Valley where my parents have a summer cottage. I love it here. There are no fences and so many rabbits to chase (my Mom is vegetarian and was a bit sad when I came back with a freshly killed bunny in my mouth but she handled it with strife as she is used to weekly offerings from the cats). There are acres of forest and farmland that I am free to roam (though I usually stay close and have excellent recall if I do say so myself). There is a river and I had my first swim a few months ago after some gentle encouragement (I got my favorite locally sourced beef liver treats as an incentive, who could say “no” to beef liver without preservatives!?). I’m doing really well and I want to thank you for saving my life. I was top of my class in agility training. Mom says I am an excellent guard dog but at the same time friendly with family members. If I’m feeling it, I sometimes let a few strangers that I deem non-threatening pet me (this gets a bit old though and elderly women with white curly hair really drive me into protection mode). I love cats, particularly kittens and to the surprise of my family, I rescued one from the garbage tip. I am eager to learn more tricks (I have 20 tricks/commands down and now am working on long chain commands, it’s hard work, but I’m a bit of a “smarty-pants,” so I am sure I can do it). Sometimes when I think Mom is looking I jump over the cow posts or though the canoe rungs in hopes of getting a treat. I try not to herd the cows in the farm across the river but sometimes my instincts get the better of me. I’m a bit alarmed by the horses but they don’t seem to pay me any heed no matter how much I howl at them… I’m much better at riding in cars for longer periods of time. If a lay quietly (howling is not for the car) and don’t pace back and forth (my Mom says this a driving hazard), I get the occasional almond thrown my way. I’m also very good at running alongside the car when we get to the edge of our property. After some training I am now trusted to run beside the car for the four miles it takes to get from the bridge to the house. Sometimes I see a deer! I’m very vocal (the “husky” in me) and sing and talk on command now. I encountered my first black bear (there have been three since then) a few months ago. I howled like a wolf in the enclosed veranda for TWO hours until the bear left our property (what nerve!). Being generous and all, I passed some of my Husky and German Shepherd traits along to my fellow Labrador mate. He doesn’t sing nearly as well as I do, but my Mom seems to think it’s so cute that he often gets a treat whenever he does it. That’s all for now. I have a coconut-oil-dipped-carrot “bone” coming my way and so I’m getting distracted. Sending peace, love and gratitude as well as a huge play bow to my foster brother in California, Shala (which my Mom says is Arabic for "multicoloured eye beauty).


Important Note About Dog Descriptions

Please remember that the descriptions of dogs (of Dogs Available) have been written by GSRNC volunteers and are usually based only upon our observation of the dog since the time it was rescued. While we try to provide dog descriptions that are fair and accurate, the nature of our work involves contact with dogs whose background and history are unknown to us. GSRNC cannot warrant or guarantee any dog's future behavior. For example, if we say that a rescue dog gets along with children, cats, or other dogs, this statement is usually based upon the fact that one of our volunteers has observed the dog interacting with his or her own children or pets. While this information may be helpful, we cannot be certain of how a dog will do with the children or pets in your home. If you are considering adopting, we encourage you to come to one of our Adoption Days and meet our rescue dogs. Ultimately, only you can decide whether one of our dogs is right for you.