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Service Relinquish an Animal

Relinquish an Animal

Q. How do I Relinquish an Animal to Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control.

There are several options:

  • Bring the animal into the shelter during normal business hours. There is no fee for relinquishing an animal to our department.
  • If you need to relinquish an animal when our office is closed, use our after hours night depository located at the south end of our building. Instructions are on the outside of the building. Be sure to complete the paperwork that is there as well.
  • If the animal is a stray, you may call for an Animal Control Officer to pick up the animal. Officers are available seven days a week from 6am-1am. They are also available for emergency call out at other times.
  • If the animal is a stray, you may hold the animal in your home and file a found report with our office. Call 427-1244 (choose menu option 7). Reporting the animal is required to allow the owner a better chance of locating their lost pet. They will go through these reports each time they visit the shelter. You will also need to bring the animal to the shelter during normal business hours to allow us to scan the pet for a microchip. You may continue to hold the animal at your home. After thirty days from the filing the found animal report, if the owner does not claim the animal, you will become the legal owner. Remember, the animal must be presented to the shelter for microchip scanning prior to legal ownership.

Q. How Long Are Animals Held at the Shelter?

  • An animal turned in by its owner is immediately the property of the city and may go into the adoption program pending suitability and space, or may be humanely euthanized for cause.
  • A stray animal is held by the department for a minimum of three business days, the first day does not count if the animal arrived during business hours. Weekends and holidays are not considered in the count. For example, if your pet is picked up on a Wednesday after 11am, it will be available for the owner to claim until 5:30pm on Monday. After the three business days, the city owns the animal and may then:
    • evaluate the animal for our adoption program.
    • evaluate the animal for transfer to a rescue partner agency
    • humanely euthanize the animal in the event of advanced illness, aggression, or other cause as deemed necessary.
  • An injured stray animal will be medically evaluated and may be humanely euthanized to prevent further suffering prior to the end of the legal holding period according to the city ordinance.

We hope owners will take the time to look for their lost pets and keep current identification on their animals at all time. A microchip is a great investment! If an animal has identification, the owners are notified immediately and when possible, pets may be returned directly to their homes.

Q. How Long Are Adoption Animals Held?

We are happy to say that adoption animals have no time frame for being held. They will remain in the adoption program until adopted. Only under rare curcumstances is an adoption animal removed from the program. Even then, the animal may receive additional assistance to then be returned to the program.

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3020 Hillegas Road
Fort Wayne IN 46808
260-427-1244
After 8 p.m. and on weekends and holidays, call 449-3000 for assistance.
Fax: 260-427-5514


Closed Mondays FOR ADOPTIONS
To submit a pet adoption profile, you must do so 30-minutes before closing to allow sufficient time for processing.

Adoptions are Open: Tueday, Thursday, Friday 12:00 - 5:30 p.m.
Wednesday 12:00 - 7:00 p.m.
1st & 3rd Sat 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Adoption Office: 260-427-5502


Business Office Hours:

11:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Mon-Fri
11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. Wednesday


Officer Assistance

6:00 a.m. - 1:00 a.m. Mon-Sun
1:00 a.m. - 6:00 a.m. Emergencies