Frequently Asked Questions
Please read this before inquiring about adopting a dog!
Q: How much does it cost to adopt a dog?
A: We ask for a minimum donation of $175 for senior dogs (>10 years old), $250 for adult dogs (1-10 years old), and $325 for puppies (6 months -1 years). Unaltered puppies, under the age of 6 months will require an addition $50 deposit that will be returned upon proof of spay/neuter.
Q: Are the dogs spayed/neutered and up to date on shots?
A: Yes, all of our adult dogs are spayed/neutered and up to date on shots. In some cases you may be adopting a dog shortly before their most recent boosters are due and will need to get the dog shots soon upon adopting.
Q: Does this dog have any health problems?
A: All of our dogs are given a general physical health assessment by a vet and any known issues are treated before the dog is adopted out. If we have a dog with a chronic problem (arthritis, cataracts, etc) we will notify you of the dog's issues before adoption. Unless we have reason to suspect other underlying health issues, they are not given special blood testing, x-rays, etc. We have dental work done on dogs who have dental problems, but not regular cleanings. Keep in mind that many of these dogs are the products of poor breeding or care early in life, and even the best pure bred dogs are subject to genetic health issues and other problems as they age. We always advise adopters to get their new family member seen by a vet as soon as possible to get a baseline health assessment.
Q: What is your adoption process?
A: Download and fill out an adoption application available at www.arcticrescue.com. Upon reviewing your application, and contacting your references/landlord, we will set up a home visit and time for you to meet the dog. You must become an approved adopter prior to being allowed to adopt a dog. We are not a shelter or pet store, you cannot come by and pick out a dog to take home in the span of a few hours. We have this process in an effort to ensure that our dogs are going to loving forever homes who are willing to work with any problems the dog might have. We do not adopt dogs as outdoor only dogs.
Q: Where are your dogs located?
A: This is the FAQ for Arctic Rescue Southwest. All of our dogs are located in Alamogordo NM. We are an extension of, and work closely with Arctic Rescue (based in Utah).
Q: Will you transport a dog to me?
A: No, we have limited resources that are better used tending to the needs of the dogs. You are responsible for coming to meet/pick up/ transport the adopted dog to your home. Transport may be available for approved Utah adopters on a case by case basis.
Q: If I don't have a fence can I adopt a dog?
A: Yes, so long as you understand the energy/exercise requirements of this breed of dog. Some of our dogs are escape artists and do better in a home where they are never outside off leash (even in a fenced area). More important than having a fence, is having a secure fence that the dog cannot escape from if it is left unattended for any period of time.
Q: If I live out of state can I adopt a dog?
A: Yes, provided you become an approved adopter. Keep in mind that you are responsible for providing transportation for the dog. In the case of multiple applications for the same dog, if all applicants are qualified for the dog, preferance will be given to the in-state applicant. If you live in the state of Utah, we recommend that you view Arctic Rescue's adoptable dogs, before attempting to adopt one of ours. Their dogs can be seen at www.arcticrescue.com/adopt-a-dog/our-dogs. No matter the state you are in, we recommend you check with your local shelters and rescues before looking for a dog out of state.
Q: Why are your adoption fees so high? I can adopt a dog from the pound for way less.
A: Yes you can adopt a dog from the pound for less. The local pound/animal shelter is subsidized by the city, we are not. Our rescue is privately funded and we rely on donations from the public to keep operating. Much of our funding to continue providing medical care, food, shelter, exercise, etc. comes from our adoption fees. In addition, our dogs get much more individualized attention, and in general, we can provide you with a better fit based on what we know and have observed about our dogs.
Q: Will you "hold" a dog for me?
A: Typically no. We operate on the principle of best fit for the dog. If your application is in first and you are the best fit for the dog then we will allow you to adopt it. If you application is in first and there are equally qualified families who want the dog, we will not wait for you to become available to adopt the dog. Other, equally qualified families will be allowed to adopt the dog.
Q: Can I foster the dog before adopting?
A: Yes, but keep in mind, our goal is to find loving, dedicated homes for these dogs. They all have issues and problems that need to be worked through, that is why they are in rescue. Whether their issue is escaping, excessive energy, dog aggression, food aggression, anxiety, etc. they all need homes willing to work through their problems. We understand the desire to be aware of what you are getting yourself into, that is why we will be up front with you about the issues a dog has. Please do not plan to use a foster program as simply a "test drive" to bounce a dog back into and out of rescue. If you are looking to adopt a dog, please prepare yourself to deal with problems in one form or another.
Q: Is this dog good with kids?
A: We don't know. Unless a previous owner surrendered the dog and expressely said it was good with kids, we do not have a lot of information on it. Few of our foster homes have children, so these dogs get very little interaction with children, and even less in an uncontrolled setting. If you have children please take into consideration that these are big, energetic dogs. They should never be left unattended with children for any reason.
Q: Is this dog good with cats/chickens/rabbits/guinea pigs/birds/etc?
A: In general, no. These are dogs with a high prey drive who don't view these animals as part of they family, they view them as prey. When trained, these dogs can live with and interact with many of these animals peacefully. That said, most of these dogs come to us as adults without having had the necessary training from a young age to interact with these types of small animals. If you want to bring these dogs into the house with small animals, be prepared for the worst. Be prepared for the dog to kill your small animal and be prepared to keep the animals separated at all times.
Q: How does the home visit work?
A: A volunteer will visit you at your home to make sure it is suitable for the dog you are trying to adopt. We verify the condition of the fences, area where the dog will be kept, etc. There is nothing you need to prepare for the home visit. In the event that we do not have a volunteer in your area to conduct a home visit, we will ask you to submit photos/video of your home where the dog will be kept. Specifically we are looking for things like the height/condition of a fence, where the dog will be left when you are not at home, where the dog will sleep, etc.
Q: How old is the dog?
A: We can provide you with an estimate. Most of these dogs come to us as adults. Our best guess on age comes from the condition of teeth, joints, activity level, etc. This provides us with a ROUGH estimate of age. It is definitely possible for this age to be off by a year or more, in either direction.
Q: What if I am no longer able to care for the dog after I adopt it? What if it doesn't get along with my current dog/cat/kid/etc.
A: If you are no longer able or willing to care for the dog you adopted, you are required to give it back to us. You may not give it to a friend, family member, neighbor, etc. You may not relinquish it to your local animal shelter or rescue. In addition, we ask that you give a newly adopted dog at least 60 days to adjust to it's new situation and surroundings. It takes this long for a dog to learn the new rules and become comfortable with it's new family. If you are having behavioral problems, contact us. We are here to help and can provide advice on how to make the transition smoother.