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Adoption 101

Thank you for considering adoption through Butte Humane Society (BHS).

Choosing to adopt an animal from BHS is choosing to save lives, help reduce pet overpopulation, save money, and most of all embrace happiness for yourself and your new pet. 

Skip directly to the Adoption Process steps.

View adoption center hours & locations
View adoptable dogscats, and small animals
View adopter applicaton forms
View current adoption discount programs

Our adoption centers have many wonderful animals, all breeds big and small, who are capable of bonding with your family. Our adoptable animals are grateful to be given another chance to be loyal adoring family companions. When you adopt from BHS, you not only gain a loving new friend, you also free up a space for another homeless animal to become available for adoption. 

BHS adoption counselors are here to help you find your perfect furry friend. Unlike "pass/fail" adoption applications, we strive to match people and animals through education and discovery. We accomplish this by conversation to create an effective, pleasant adoption experience - and most importantly, to make lasting matches.
By cross-referencing your needs with our adoptable pet's existing personality profiles, we are able to help you find the right companion animal for your unique lifestyle and preferences.

Standard Adoption Prices*

Butte Humane Society accepts cash and major credit cards; we do not accept checks for adoption fees.
*Some exceptions may apply.

Your new companion comes with:

  • Up-to-date core vaccinations and preventative care as follows:
    • Dogs: Bordetella, Da2PPl, and Rabies (if over 3 months old) vaccinations; de-wormer, flea prevention, heartworm prevention, heartworm test (if 6 months and older)
    • Cats: FVRCP, Rabies (if over 3 months old) vaccinations; de-wormer, flea prevention, FeLV or FeLV/FIV test
  • Spay or neuter (dogs, cats, and rabbits only)
  • Complimentary examination by a participating local veterinarian after adoption.
    View participating veterinarians (Does not include additional shots or testing)
  • Peace of mind with a complimentary microchip
  • Personalized temperament assessment and recent health check
  • One month of free ShelterCare insurance
  • Cardboard cat carrier is included for cats and small animals - bring your own carrier and get $5 off your adoption!
  • Receive a 10% off coupon from TrailBlazer Pet Supply for an entire month.
  • Receive a coupon for 20% off services from Cleanrite Buildrite.
  • It doesn't stop when you adopt - receive behavior consultation with our staff as needed.

The Adoption Process 

Step 1: Preparing for your new pet 

Welcoming a new animal into your home is always exciting, but with some extra precautions and preparations, you can ensure this transition is as smooth and stress-free as possible. All members of your household should be in agreement about adopting a new animal, and they should meet any potential new pets before bringing them home. If you are renting, keep in mind your landlord's policy on pets, including additional deposits or any breed or size limitations. Purchasing necessary supplies ahead of time and placing dishes, litterboxes, etc in their permanent locations will further ease the transition. For more tips on preparing your home (and yourself) for a new pet, check out ASPCA's comprehensive guide.

If you are adopting a dog or puppy, please read our dog adoption guide which was created by our canine behavior staff to help you ensure a smooth transition for your family and new dog.

If you are traveling to Chico from another area, click here.

Step 2: Finding your new best friend

Our website lists all animals currently available for adoption, including adoptable animals that are off-site in foster care or at mobile adoption events. Feel free to walk through our adoption centers to see the animals up close and personal. You may stop by our adoption desk at any time during public hours to ask questions. If you are looking for a specific breed and do not see one on our website, please fill out a breed request form and submit it to the appropriate adoption center.

Step 3: Get to know each other

When you find a pet that you are considering to adopt, return to the adoption desk where you will be asked to complete a brief adoption application. (Alternately, you can download the forms here.) An adoption counselor will meet with you to discuss your adopter survey, the pet's background and personality, and give you a chance to spend time with your potential adoptee - please keep in mind this meeting may occur immediately or by appointment depending on availability. If you are adopting a dog and already have any dogs living or frequently visiting your home, be prepared to bring the other dogs to the Dog Adoption Center to ensure their compatibility.

Step 4: Making it official

Once you are confident that you've found the right pet, the counselor will assist you by processing the adoption paperwork and updating the animal's microchip registration records. (We'll notify 24Petwatchtm, an international pet recovery service, that you are the pet's new owner.) Bring a government-issued photo ID (driver's license, passport or military ID) and be prepared to spend up to an hour with your adoption counselor while processing your adoption. You'll get an adoption folder containing the animal's medical summary, microchip documentation, current diet information, a list of local veterinarians who offer a free exam to newly adopted pets, BHS clinic price list, and special offers from BHS and our partners.

Remember to bring a carrier for your new cat or leash for your new dog, for the trip home. In most cases, you can take your new pet home with you the same day you come in.

Once you get home, remember to:

As you and your adopted companion embark on this new life together, keep in mind that we too are forever committed to the happiness of you and your pet. If you have any questions, issues or concerns about your new friend once you get home, please don't hesitate to call us. Our adoption support team is here to help! Contact us at 530.343.7917 x203 or

Additional resources for animal care, training and education may also be found under the "Resources" section of our website. More information on pet vaccinations can be found here.