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Adoption FAQs

What Animals Does OC Animal Care Have For Adoption?

OC Animal Care is one of the largest shelters on the west coast, with housing for over 400 animals. There are a variety of species to choose from when looking for a new pet. The shelter offers dogs, cats, bunnies, birds, small animals, and other exotic pets for adoption. On any given day, about 20% of the dogs and cats are available for immediate adoption. If you are looking to adopt, check out our Adoptable Pets page or sign up for Pet Match by Email. All adoptions are currently by scheduled appointment only. Please call our main line at (714) 935-6848 to schedule an adoption appointment.


What Are the Steps to Adoption at OC Animal Care?

Thank you for choosing to adopt! Here are a few easy steps to complete your adoption:

1. View Our Available Pets

Visit the Adoptable Pets page on our website and select one of our available pets. Available pets have met the minimum required retention period allowed for owners to have their pet returned to them and have been made available for adoption.


2. Call Our Main Line to Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an adoption appointment, call our main line at (714) 935-6848. Please have the Animal ID# ready for any specific animal you might be interested in. (Animal ID#s can be found in the animal’s bio on our Adoptable Pets page)


3. Visit The Pet You're Interested In

All adopters must visit with the pet they are considering with a scheduled appointment prior to completing the adoption process. Our staff will evaluate the visit and help you determine if this is the right pet for you by providing more information about the pet. We are currently asking all adopting parties to be limited to 5 individuals at a time. Additionally, we do not hold available pets for adoption. Adoptions will continue to be first come first serve.


4. Complete the Adoption Process with an Adoption Counselor

Once you have completed your visit, you will be directed to our Adoption Center to complete the adoption process. You must pay all applicable fees and will be provided necessary paperwork. If your newly adopted pet has to stay for surgery, you will be required to return to the Animal Care Center when notified that your animal is ready for pick-up.


5. Give Your New Animal Friend Time to Adjust

Your new animal friend will take time to adjust to their new home, so make sure to be patient and allow them the space and time necessary to get used to their new environment. Adjustment periods may vary and can even take up to eight weeks or more, depending on the animal.

What is a ‘Retention Period’ and How Long Does it Last?

The Retention Period is the time legally required for OC Animal Care to hold on to an animal so that their family has a chance to come in and find them. Retention Periods can vary and last anywhere from 4 days to more than 30 days depending on that animal's particular situation.


How Much Does it Cost to Adopt? And What Does It Include?

All fees are bundled and include the adoption fee, microchip, vaccinations, sterilization, and all veterinary services including anti-parasite treatment.
Adopted pets also receive a certificate for a free veterinary exam at participating Southern California Veterinary Medical Association clinics within 72 hours of adoption. To find a participating vet, please visit


Adoption Fees for Animals Impounded or Relinquished Within the City of Fullerton


Do You Have Any Discounts for Seniors or Military Members?

Yes! CLICK HERE for more information on our Senior and Military Discounts!


How Do I Adopt an Exotic Pet?

OC Animal Care frequently receives exotic pets that are made available for adoption. These exotic animals, such as non-venomous reptiles and exotic birds, are held for a minimum of seven (7) days to allow owner redemptions. Please be advised that not all exotic pets will be made available for public adoption as some of them require permits to own. Exotic pets are subject to the same adoption process as other shelter pets.
To view all available exotic animals, please CLICK HERE.


What if it Doesn’t Work Out With My New Pet?

While we always recommend giving your new pet significant time to adjust to its new environment, if your new pet does not work out for any reason, you are able to come in for an exchange within 30 days of adoption. OC Animal Care does not offer refunds for returned pets. If you would like to return your pet after 30 days you will need follow the owner surrender process and pay all applicable owner surrender fees.


I Recently Adopted a Pet, Do You Have Any Resources?

Spay/Neuter FAQs

Spay/Neuter After-Care for Cats and Dogs

Resources for Cats

Resources for Dogs

Resources for Rabbits


Disclaimer for Adoptable Animals

Updating of the adoptable animal information on our site is continuous. Photographs and/or descriptions of our animals are added to and deleted whenever an animal is adopted, returned to its owner, etc. Animals featured on our web page are available for adoption on a first come first serve basis. Due to mix breeding, description information may vary from photographs. All adoptions are currently by scheduled appointment. To schedule an adoption appointment, call our main line at (714) 935-6848.