How to Surrender a Cat for Adoption at a No-Kill Shelter

Give your cat up for adoption at a no-kill shelter.
Give your cat up for adoption at a no-kill shelter. (Image: cat image by tnk333 from

If you can't take care of your cat anymore, explore all other options before surrendering it to a shelter. Consult your veterinarian about the cat's medical and behavioral issues. Perhaps you can obtain assistance paying for its health expenses. Ask whether any of your friends and family members want to adopt your cat. Place your cat in a boarding facility, until you can take it back home. When you have no other choice, contact a no-kill shelter.

Call a local no-kill shelter to let them know that you want to surrender your cat for adoption. Depending on the shelter, your cat may end up on a very long waiting list, so call a few months in advance. If the shelter has space, make an appointment to go visit.

Visit the shelter with your cat, so the shelter staff can evaluate your situation. Depending on the shelter, the staff might ask you questions regarding the cat's medical history and your reason for surrendering it. This appointment also allows you to inspect the facility. Some no-kill shelters have too many animals and run beyond their capacity, resulting in neglect of the animals.

Read the surrender or relinquishment contract thoroughly, and sign it. The fine print often contains important information about the shelter's policies.

Pay the surrender fee and leave your cat at the shelter. Many no-kill shelters only run on funds from donations, fundraising events and fees. Also consider making a donation, because the money will go to taking care of your cat, and other animals in similar situations.

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