Adoption Application

Powell Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) is a non-profit 501(c)(3), all-volunteer, foster-based rescue organization dedicated to saving homeless dogs from unnecessary euthanasia. We are committed to reducing overpopulation, providing education about dog behavior, safety, and appropriate veterinary care, and securing permanent, nurturing homes for the dogs we rescue.

PAWS Adoption Application

Please read the agreement and requirements below before filling out the remainder of this application.

Dog Adoption Requirements & Agreements

  • I am at least 21 years of age and live within central Ohio
  • I am willing and able to make a lifetime commitment to the dog I wish to adopt (10 – 20 years)
  • I have the financial means to appropriately provide for a dog’s veterinary care, including yearly wellness exams, preventative care (vaccinations, dental cleanings, monthly heartworm, and seasonal flea & tick preventatives), and emergency care, as well as quality food, treats, chew toys, and as needed, training, grooming, day care, boarding, etc.
  • I have the necessary time (at least 90 dedicated minutes per day, every day) to provide for a dog’s daily need for a combination of attention, socialization, and physical & mental exercise
  • My dog will be an indoor companion, never left outdoors unsupervised or in any environment that doesn’t have climate control suitable for humans
  • I have either a securely fenced yard, secure tether system, or will take my dog on multiple on-leash walks and potty breaks every day
  • I will contact my Homeowner’s or Renter’s insurance company prior to adoption to confirm that my policy covers ownership of the particular dog breed or mixed breed I want to adopt
  • If I rent my home, I will provide PAWS written proof of landlord approval for me to own and keep the dog I wish to adopt on my rental property, and will abide by any size or breed restrictions
  • As the dog’s adopter and legal guardian/owner, I will assume full responsibility for my dog, and am not adopting this dog as a gift for someone else; prior to adoption, all household members must meet and agree that they want and will care for the dog
  • All of my current household pets are spayed or neutered and current on all vaccinations, for which I will provide written proof if this can not be verified via a veterinary reference check; PAWS dogs will be spayed or neutered, up-to-date on vaccinations, heartworm tested, on monthly heartworm preventative and seasonal flea & tick preventative, microchipped, and licensed prior to adoption

I agree to and/or meet the above requirements and conditions for adopting a dog from PAWS. I understand PAWS will do its best to help me adopt a dog that matches my desires with a dog’s needs. PAWS reserves the right to deny any application without explanation.

Please initial this important note- If two or more applications are received for the same dog, all applicants will be considered until there is an adoption pending. PAWS will make its best effort to determine which of the applicants will be the best match for the dog. We will continue to work with all approved applicants to find another dog in need of a great home if the first choice is unavailable.
If renting, your landlord’s or property manager’s authorization (via email or letter) stating you may have a dog is required.
All Other Human Household Members if Applicable:

All Current Animals (dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, reptiles, rodents, etc. & outdoor animals) if Applicable:

Name of Animal, Species or Breed , M / F, Age, Weight , Spayed/Neutered? (Yes/No), Energy Level (Low/Med/High), Date of Last Vet Visit
Name of Animal, Species or Breed , M / F, Age, Weight , Spayed/Neutered? (Yes/No), Energy Level (Low/Med/High), Date of Last Vet Visit
Name of Animal, Species or Breed , M / F, Age, Weight , Spayed/Neutered? (Yes/No), Energy Level (Low/Med/High), Date of Last Vet Visit
Name of Animal, Species or Breed , M / F, Age, Weight , Spayed/Neutered? (Yes/No), Energy Level (Low/Med/High), Date of Last Vet Visit
Name of Animal, Species or Breed , M / F, Age, Weight , Spayed/Neutered? (Yes/No), Energy Level (Low/Med/High), Date of Last Vet Visit

Important: All dogs, cats, and small animals living in your home must be spayed or neutered and current on vaccinations prior to the adoption of a PAWS dog unless there is a professionally documented reason.

Please list the Veterinarian that cares for your current and/or previous animals. If you (or your parents) have never had animals, please list a personal reference that is a responsible pet owner.
Under what circumstances would you no longer be able to keep your commitment to be your dog’s life long guardian?
Please check all that may apply.
PAWS strives to do what is in the best interest of the dogs in our care. This includes doing all we can to ensure that a potential adopter's environment, energy level, knowledge, experience, and commitment are all a match for what's been observed to be the care and leadership needs of each dog we rescue. Our goal is for each dog's adoption to be its last, so we take time to determine whether a particular dog will thrive with a particular person or family.

It can take several days or even weeks to finalize an adoption once we receive this non-binding application. We first review your application and do a veterinary reference check. If you rent, we verify that your landlord or property manager approves of you having a dog. Your application is then forwarded to the volunteer who is fostering the dog you are interested in adopting. The foster will contact you to arrange an initial meeting if you haven't yet met the dog at one of our adoption events.

If after meeting the dog and hearing the foster's observations you are interested in pursuing adoption, we'll schedule two PAWS volunteers to bring the dog to your home at a time when all members of your household can be present. We do our best to ensure that there will be no surprises after adoption by disclosing all known issues and providing all veterinary records. To give puppies and their guardians the best shot at enjoying a great life together we ask adopters of dogs less than 6 months old to commit to attending a puppy class within 30 days of adoption. Should you desire to adopt a dog with a known behavior issue, we may make the adoption contingent upon your agreement to hire a professional behaviorist if you aren't able to sufficiently modify or manage the behavior.

After the home visit, even if everyone agrees that it's a perfect match, we will ask that you contemplate your desire to adopt overnight, taking into consideration that this is a lifelong commitment that will likely require significant time, energy, and financial resources. Should you decide that you're willing and able to make this commitment, we'll schedule a time and place to finalize the adoption. To optimize the transition for both you and the dog, we strongly advise that the adoption be done at such a time that allows for a responsible adult to be continuously available to your new dog for the first 72 hours.

Our adoption fee is $200. PAWS dogs are fully vetted, spayed or neutered, microchipped, licensed, current on all vaccines, heartworm tested, and on monthly heartworm and seasonal flea & tick preventatives. The average cost of these services at a veterinary clinic in the Midwest is over $450.

PAWS Return and Adoption Fee Refund Policy

Our goal is to make every adoption a permanent one that is fulfilling for both you and your dog. We make every effort to ensure an adoption is a great match between the dog and adopter.

Should circumstances arise whereby you feel that your only option is to surrender your dog, PAWS will do its best to assist you in finding your dog a new home. We require that you contact PAWS before giving away, transferring ownership, or surrendering your dog. PAWS retains the option to reacquire your dog if we determine we have the resources to adequately care for, rehabilitate if necessary, and find your dog a new permanent home. If we are able to take your dog in, please understand that it may take several weeks before we can take possession as time may be needed to secure an appropriate volunteer foster home. We will advise you on how to manage any issues short-term in order to keep your dog, humans, other pets, and property safe during this period. Should you be unable to continue to care for your dog in your home, you may choose to board your dog at a reputable boarding or veterinary facility at your expense until a foster home can be secured. If PAWS does not have the resources to adequately care for your dog, we will do our best to assist you in finding an appropriate alternative.

If you have made every reasonable effort to find a way to keep your dog, PAWS' Board of Directors will consider your request to receive a partial refund of up to 50% of the adoption fee if your request is made between 3 and 8 weeks of adoption. PAWS will not reimburse any expenses you incurred after accepting legal guardianship of your dog upon signing our Adoption Contract. Please submit your request via email or postal service, thoroughly detailing the circumstances and steps taken in an attempt to remedy the situation. You will be notified of the Board's decision via email or postal service within 4 weeks.

Should I choose to adopt a dog from Powell Animal Welfare Society (PAWS):

I will affirm to the best of my ability to commit to being the dog's caretaker, leader, and legal guardian for its lifetime. I will be responsible for all aspects of my dog's life, which include providing appropriate nutrition, shelter, healthcare, exercise, training, socialization, enrichment, affection, supervision, and control.

I will agree to make an appointment with a licensed veterinarian within 30 days of adoption for an introductory meeting, and give them my dog's previous vet records provided by PAWS at time of adoption. I also will agree to get a prescription for monthly heartworm preventative to be given year round, and will give my dog flea & tick preventative seasonally. I understand wellness checks should be done annually and vaccinations need to be kept up to date.

I recognize that the joy and benefits of having a canine companion are optimized when a dog's guardian invests sufficient time, energy, and resources, particularly in the first days, weeks, and months, to establish themselves as the dog's trusted and respected leader.

I acknowledge that dogs are a species separate from humans with different means of communication, though like us, are capable of experiencing and expressing a range of emotions and behaviors like calmness, happiness, and joy, as well as over-excitement, anxiety, insecurity, fear, and aggression. I understand dogs may express unwanted and potentially dangerous behaviors that may need to be safely and respectfully addressed and/or managed.

I recognize that there is potential risk and liability in serving as a dog's guardian, and understand that dogs can be destructive to property, and can cause injury and even death to other animals, including humans.

I am aware that every dog has the potential to bite, and that statistically, children under 12 years of age are most at risk. I understand that close adult supervision is always necessary when dogs and children are in each other's presence.

I understand that a dog's guardian is ethically and legally responsible for their dog's actions.

I recognize that dogs are highly social animals that require daily focused attention, exercise, and leadership. I accept that one may need to further develop their canine leadership skills and knowledge of canine body language and behavior management through books, videos, training classes, and consultation with a professional canine behaviorist.

I agree that a dog's guardian should make every reasonable effort to resolve any issue that would prevent them from keeping their dog and providing it a good quality of life.


By typing my full name and date below, affirms that all of the information I have provided in this application is true and complete to the best of my knowledge and that I agree to all of the conditions and responsibilities described in this document should I choose to adopt a dog from Powell Animal Welfare Society (PAWS).