Frequently Asked Questions
Please see below for answers to many of the most common questions we receive.
Are you a “no-kill” shelter?
We are an Open Door Shelter, which means we accept all incoming animals. We do not have a waiting list and we will never reject an animal. We do have to euthanize some animals but only for poor health or temperament. We do not impose a time or space limit and our adoption rate is well-above the national average.
How long do you keep animals?
There is no set time limit. We hold healthy, adoptable animals until we find them homes.
If I find a stray animal, how long will you hold it?
We hold all stray animals for a minimum of three days (longer if an animal has identification) to try and find an owner. After that time, animals are evaluated to ensure that they are suitable for adoption.
Do you pick up stray animals?
No, we are unable to offer this service. You must contact your local animal control agency.
Do you accept donations of blankets, towels, or other items?
Yes! They may be dropped off at any time. Please see our Wish List for some of our other needs.
Are you funded by the state or other government entity?
No! We are supported by the generous donations of the public. To make a contribution, Donate to us or call 412-345-0345
I think my neighbor is abusing/neglecting their animal. Can you help?
Unfortunately we do not currently employ a humane agent. You can contact one at 412-847-7066 or 412-321-4625 x216. If the offense is happening right now, call 911.
Does my dog require a license even though she or he stays inside?
Yes! All dogs over the age of 3 months are required by law to have a license.
I found an injured/orphaned baby bird, rabbit, or other injured wild animal. What should I do?
Please visit our Wildlife FAQ and call our Wildlife Center at 412-345-7300 x500 for further instructions.
Can I check on an animal that I surrendered?
Yes. Please call our Adoption Department at 412-345-7300 x215.
Can I adopt a stray animal that I turned in?
Please see an Adoption Counselor or call the Adoptions Department at 412-345-7300 x215.
Is there a fee to drop off an animal?
We request at least a $25.00 donation to offset the costs of taking in an animal. As an open door shelter, however, no animal is ever refused for an unwillingness or inability to make that donation.
Do you bill for veterinary services?
No. Please speak to our Clinic Manager at 412-345-7300 x223 regarding special circumstances for sick animals who need immediate care.
How long will my cat or dog be pregnant?
Gestation is approximately 63 days. However, in keeping with the mission of the Animal Rescue League, we encourage you to have your animals spayed or neutered in order to control the pet population. Please see our Veterinary Clinic section for details on our many programs to prevent unwanted animals from making their way to our shelter.
Can I get my animal spayed for free?
Yes and no. City of Pittsburgh residents are entitled to have their pets spayed or neutered for free through Animal Care & Control’s Spay/Neuter Program. Our clinic participates in this program, but residents must apply directly with the City by clicking on the previous link or calling 412-255-2036. Residents outside of the city limits do not qualify for this program, but the Animal Rescue League does offer other various discounted programs. Please visit our Spay/Neuter section for more information or call us at 412-345-7300 x223. Spaying or Neutering your pet is critical to controlling the animal population.
There is a feral cat problem in my neighborhood. Can you help?
Yes. For information or to request assistance with feral cats, please visit our community cat resource website at ProjectNala.org. We also offer discounted spays & neuters for outdoor and/or feral cats. Click to our Trap, Neuter, Return (TNR) section for more information or contact our Clinic at 412-345-7300 x211 or x223.
Do you accept donations of opened food?
No. All of our shelter animals are on a strict diet so that we can better monitor any health problems. We do not accept unopened food. Please visit our Wish List for more specifications and acceptable items.
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