Surrendering a Pet

Surrendering an Animal

Surrender Hours

Saturday and Sunday: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Tuesday – Friday: 12:00pm – 6:00pm

Admissions Information

The following will provide information regarding Western PA Humane Society programs offering assistance in keeping your pet at home, general information about open admission (open door) shelters, the procedure for admitting an animal and some general guidelines for admittance.

Options To Releasing Your Pet

  • Have you asked friends or family members to care for your pet?
  • Ask about our Low Cost Spay & Neuter Program. Certain health & behavior problems can be curbed by spaying or neutering your pet.
  • Ask about our Wellness Animal Clinic. If your pet is displaying out of the ordinary behavior, this may be an indication of a health problem.
  • Ask about our Obedience Training Classes. Studies show that 90% of dogs released to an animal shelter are related to lack of training. Attending classes can help build a better understanding of how to correct common behavior problems and build a bond between you and your pet.
  • Ask about our Cat & Dog Behavior Resources. Tip sheets about behavior and/or someone is available to discuss those "bad habits".
  • Ask about Ellie's Pet Pantry. Pet food bank which provides a supply of pet food to offset expenses. Call 412-321-4625 X 305

Surrender Information

We understand that there will be circumstances when you must relinquish ownership of your pet. We are here for you during this difficult time. In order to continue to be a resource for others in the community for another 138 years, we now require a minimum processing fee of $25.00 per surrendered animal.

Why does the Western PA Humane Society charge Owner Surrender Fees?

Those fees cover only a small portion of what it costs us to care for each animal that stays at our facility. The average cost to care for each animal that comes through our facility is about $300. The cost to care for animals adds up very quickly with items such as:

  • General health and behavior assessments
  • Spay or neuter surgery
  • Vaccines and deworming
  • Feeding, general care, and cleaning
  • Staff costs to deliver animal care and a variety of other programs
  • Promote animals on our website and through various media outlets
  • Additional medical or grooming expenses
  • Maintenance and care of the building, vehicles, and equipment

Mandatory Surrender Fee

$25.00 per animal. (ID out of Allegheny County $35.00)

First litter (under 6 months) – no charge
Any additional litters (2 – 7 animals)- $35.00
(8 animals + )- $45.00
out of county add $15.00

Open Admission (Open Door) Shelter

The Western PA Humane Society is an open admission (open door) shelter. Open-admission shelters choose to take in all animals regardless of their health, temperament or placement. We accept owned, stray, sick, neglected, abused and dangerous animals. We admit animals from the community during regular business hours on a walk-in basis. We do not require an appointment prior to acceptance nor will we turn an animal away. Therefore, available kennels and cages are always at a premium.

At the time of surrender, we will ask for a valid PA State Photo ID with your current address. We charge a service fee for euthanasia requests (based on weight & temperament of animal).

We are NOT able to guarantee placement for adoption.

We do make every effort to place healthy animals who have appropriate behavior. We do not make the placement determination at time of admittance. We allow most animals 24 to 48 hours to adjust to the shelter environment before conducting a behavior and medical assessment. If there are concerns about, or evidence of aggression issues either toward people or other animals, we may make the determination to humanely euthanize the animal immediately. In addition, if the animal is suffering or has health complications, we may make the determination to humanely euthanize the animal immediately.

Dogs and cats often do poorly in shelter settings. Animals can decline quickly in health and behavior when they are taken from their homes and placed in a kennel environment. If an animal's health declines during their stay at the shelter, we will consider the option of isolation or foster care. Due to the large number of animals received on a daily basis, we have a limited amount of isolation kennels, and limited available foster homes. In the event of lack of space or foster homes, we may have no choice but to humanely euthanize the animal.

Please also consider the following advice:
  • DON'T drop your pet off in the woods or countryside, assuming that it can take care of itself. Pets lack the skills to survive on their own and may die of starvation or injury.
  • DON'T abandon your pet in a house or apartment you are moving out of, thinking that someone will eventually find it. This does not always happen.
  • DON'T give your pet away to a stranger. You don't know if that person is a responsible owner or even honest. Pets that end up in the wrong hands may be abused or sold to research laboratories.

Wildlife and Farm Animal Rescue Reference Sheet

Due to our organization’s logistical limitations we are not able to accept from the public surrendered animals that are considered wildlife and or farm animals.

  • Animal Rescue League & Wildlife Center 412-345-7300 EXT 500
  • Pennsylvania Game Commission, SW Regional Office 724-238-9523
  • Critter Control 412-366-1117
  • Pittsburgh Pro-Poultry People 412-237-9922
  • City of Pittsburgh Animal Control 412-255-2036