Adopting from the Shelter Frequently Asked Questions
Livingston County, MichiganAnimal ShelterAdopting from the Shelter Frequently Asked Questions
Livingston County
Animal Shelter

418 S. Highlander Way
Howell, MI 48843
Map to our location
Shelter and Administration Phone: 517.546.2154
Fax: 517.546.0232

Non-emergency Complaints - 517.546.9111
Emergencies - 911

Closed for Lunch weekdays: 1-1:30 pm

Animal Viewing Hours:
Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri
11 am-1 pm., 1:30-5 pm.
11 am-1 pm, 1:30-7 pm
10 am - 3 pm

All Other Business:
Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri:

8 am-1 pm, 1:30-5 pm
8 am-1 pm, 1:30-7 pm

Adopting from the Shelter Frequently Asked Questions

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I want to adopt a pet. How does that work?,

If you would like to adopt a pet please visit the shelter or take a look at the adoptable animals on our website. It is important that you visit the shelter and spend some time with the animal that you are thinking about adopting. *All family members in the home must meet the pet before adoption. If the adopter has a current dog in the home and is looking to adopt a second dog you must bring your dog for a meet and greet. All pets in the home must be spayed/neutered and current on vaccines. If you have a dog(s) currently in the home that are not licensed you will be required to license them.

Once you’re sure that the animal is a good fit for your family and lifestyle, you can fill out the pre-adopt form which can take 24 hours for approval or denial, but staff try to complete them the same day. All pets will be spayed/neutered and have age appropriate medical completed before they become available for adoption. 

We do have an adoption guideline document for you to review in our adoption section. The Livingston County Animal Shelter reserves the right to deny any adoption at the discretion of the Director, Shelter Supervisor, Animal Control Officer, or Veterinarian.

When you adopt, we provide an animal’s medical history including vaccines, de-worming, heartworm or feline leukemia /FIV testing. Animals adopted from Livingston County Animal Shelter will be microchipped, and if it is a dog, it will have a Michigan dog license.​

I see a pet I want on your website. Can I call and adopt it over the phone?,

No, you must come into the shelter to adopt a pet.

Always call us first to be sure the pet is still here before coming into the Shelter. We do not hold a pets for adoption.

Any canine family member(s) are required to come for a dog to dog meeting with the potential new canine.

We prefer all family members meet the potential new pet to ensure all are comfortable. This may be required depending on the pet.

Adoptions are based on the first approved application, not first come first serve. 

If I get my new pet home and it doesn’t fit into my household, what happens?,

We understand that it can take some time to for you and your new pet to adjust, and we give each pet a trial period where you can bring them back for a refund. 

You have 3 business days to return a dog, and 10 business days to return a cat for a refund. All refunded fees made by Livingston County will be mailed to you in the form of a refund check. Please be aware that this process can take up to 3-4 weeks. 

As long as the pet that you are returning is healthy and its' temperament is fine, it will go back up for adoption. Please provide us information about the reason you are returning the animal! We will include this information in its profile and that will help us find a suitable home for the animal in the future.

I adopted a pet from the shelter and now it’s sick or injured. What should I do?,

While our staff makes every effort to assess and accurately report the health of your new pet, specific symptoms can be especially difficult to detect in a shelter environment, or do not represent at all while an animal is in our care. 

Although rare, in some cases (especially with canine respiratory infection, otherwise known as kennel cough), illness can progress rapidly after animals leave the Shelter. If the pet becomes ill in the first 5 days after adoption, you may call the Shelter for possible assistance. It will be the Veterinarian's discretion to dispense medication. We cannot reimburse you for any veterinary expenses you may incur post adoption. If you agree to diagnostics or treatment recommended by your Veterinarian, or obtain medication from your Veterinarian, it will be at your own expense. 

Once you take a pet home, you're responsible for their care and medical bills.

If you cannot afford treatment, you may return the pet.