Why do I have to read the dog bio's before applying? Why is such a big importance placed on the dog's bio?
Rescued dogs go through a lot of change, from leaving their original home and interacting with new people. Our fosters do basic training with our dogs while they are in their care. Not only does this give us an idea of the dog's personality in a home environment, but it also gives us an idea of the support that they might need to succeed. The bio's are written by our foster parents who have had the most experience with the dog so far. By reading the bio, you will be doing yourself a favour, because you will know what to expect from the dog of your interest. We understand how easy it is to fall in love with a cute dog by looking at the picture, but reading the bios properly will ensure you’re applying for your perfect match.
I can't decide which dog I should apply for. Can I apply for multiple dogs at the same time? No. You can only apply for one dog at a time. We recommend that you carefully read the bio of each dog you are interested in, and try to choose 1. Our volunteers and fosters put a lot of effort into these bios, so it's important to read them properly and think about how each dog will fit with your lifestyle and personality.
I have a cat(s) at home, but the dog's bio says “not cat tested”. Will you consider me?
“Not cat tested” means the dog hasn’t met a cat in foster care, so we have no knowledge on how the dog will do with a cat. If the dog does not show signs of prey drive, we can consider a home with cats. However, the cat owner should consider somethings before submitting an application for a dog that isn’t cat tested. You MUST do your research on proper dog/cat introductions in the home and you must be willing to work with the dog if the dog starts to show unwanted behaviours towards the cat.
I have young children at home, but the dog's bio says "not kid tested". Will you consider me?
“Not kid tested” means the dog hasn’t had many interactions with children under 12 while in foster care. We are open to homes with children, however, it is important the children understand how to properly approach the dog. Doing research and discussing with your children before applying to adopt is crucial. You need to be sure that your children will respect the dog. Some dogs who are "not kid tested", may become grumpy or upset if they are played with in a way they don’t appreciate.
If you are approved for a meet and greet, we require all family members, including children to attend.
I've sent in my application, what's next? It is very likely that we received multiple applications for the dog of your interest. Please give us up to 3 days to review your application. Below are the steps we will take. We will only proceed to the next stage if the team is content with the earlier stage.
We will assess your application form
We will do a reference check
We will schedule a Zoom video interview with you. All adults living in the home are required to be on the Zoom call.
We will let you know if you are approved for a meet and greet, at which point you will be able to meet the dog and their foster. Everyone in the family including your current dog living with you are required for the meet and greet.
The dog I wanted has been adopted. If I see another dog that I want to apply for, do I have to fill out the application again?
We keep all applications on our system for 1 year. If you have already completed steps in the application process (eg, interview), we will also keep this information on file. If it has been less than one year since you submitted an application, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with responses to two questions about the dog you’re interested in: 1. Name of dog and what about this dog makes you feel that they are the perfect fit for your family? 2. How will you help this dog with their needs? How will you help them to be successful? Do you have any experience with these things? (Please be as specific as possible) If any details from your application have changed, please also update us on those details.
Can I “try out” a dog to see if the dog is a good fit with my family? We do not allow adoptive families to have a trial period with the dog. We have a detailed application process to try and place the dog with the right family. Nevertheless, if in the first 15 days you feel that you cannot keep the dog, you will receive a refund of 75% of the adoption fee and the dog will come back to ACZ's care. After the first 15 days, there will be no refund of the adoption fee, and we may ask you for a surrender fee/donation. Everyone who is interested in adopting, should spend some time doing research and commit 100% to adopting, before proceeding with the application. A companion animal is a big responsibility. Different dogs have different needs, so consider if you can really accommodate those specific needs. We also encourage you to get a professional's help in training the dog, if you are having behavioural issues with your new dog. If you are unsure about adopting, even a little bit, we recommend fostering.
Is it possible to wave the adoption fee in any circumstance? No, we cannot waive the adoption fees. The adoption fees is vital because it allows us to continue our work. The adoption fee goes towards the care of foster dogs in our care, and allows us to do more rescues. Some of the main expenses adoption fees support include vetting, supplies and training/boarding for some of our dogs.
What is a surrender fee, or a surrender donation?
If an adopted dog is returned to us after 2 weeks, we may ask for a surrender fee/surrender donation, depending on the situation. This amount will be used for the ongoing care of the dog, and to ensure the dog is placed in a home where it can succeed. Examples include: vet care, training or food costs, when the dog comes back into our care.
Non-ACZ dog surrenders:
Please keep in mind that we do not have the space to accept all owner surrenders, and that surrendering a dog to us means that we have one less room to offer to other dogs in need. We will decide about other dog surrenders on a case by case basis, and you may be asked to give a fee/donation, depending on the situation.
I’ve read the FAQs and still have an unanswered question. Who can I contact? Please e-mail us at email@example.com with your question, and give us up to 3 days to respond.