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Adoption Policies







CLAWS must have an approved Adoption Application filled out and signed. You may complete the application either at the shelter, adoption location or download it from our website to bring with you. You will be interviewed by an Adoption Counselor to help you determine the pet(s) that best fit your household and family situation.


Indoor Only:  


This means INDOORS ALL OF THE TIME. We admit that CLAWS is more stringent in this policy than many other organizations. If NEVER letting your cat outdoors does not suit your household then adoption of a CLAWS cat may not be appropriate for your family at this time.


Occasionally, we will have an adult cat who absolutely requires an indoor/outdoor home or one of our Working Cats.  In such cases, we will make every attempt to ensure that the environment into which this cat is placed is as safe as possible.




There is a wealth of statistical information indicating that cats frequently suffer long term problems after being surgically declawed. These problems include, but are not limited to, aggressive biting and eliminating outside the litter box. CLAWS requires that you sign an adoption agreement that you will NOT have the cat's claws surgically altered in any way, including laser surgery or tendonectomy. If, after serious consideration, you feel you MUST have a declawed cat, please adopt a cat that is already declawed. Thankfully, it is not common for us to have declawed cats relinquished to us, but when we do, our profile for the cat will indicate he or she is declawed.





Due to the commitment required with adopting a cat, and the legal contract you will be signing we require all adopters to be age 18 and older.


Landlord Approval:


CLAWS will require proof that you are allowed to have pets if you live in rental housing or in a condominium with animal restrictions in the by-laws. To avoid delays in adopting your pet, please bring a copy of your Lease along with your application.



Family Decision:


Having a pet should be a pleasant and rewarding experience for all involved. If you have small children, please bring them with you when you come for your adoption interview. Because small kittens are vulnerable and young children may be unable to predict the consequences of their actions, CLAWS may be more selective in placing very young kittens in homes with children under 6.  CLAWS often have cats who have shown themselves to be particularly tolerant of children. Our Adoption Counselors will work with you to determine the best fit for your family.


Other Pets:


We do our best to place each cat into a home where the family bond can be successful. To that end, our adoption process includes specific advice regarding introduction to other pets. It is possible that the cat in whom you are interested, may not be deemed an appropriate match for your furry family. If that is the case, please understand the decision was made in the best interest of the cat and your other pets.  There however may be other cats at CLAWS who would be perfect for your situation so please consider them as possible new family members.


Lifetime Commitment:


CLAWS expects that when you adopt a pet you have made a decision to care for that pet for its entire life. A cat may be a 20-year commitment. Please think through this extremely important decision before you apply to adopt. A pet becomes a family member. A responsible pet owner/guardian makes life decisions to include their pets. Our goal is a PERMANENT placement. For this reason, our Adoption Counselors have been trained to help you find the right pets for your home and your lifestyle.

If circumstances do not allow you to continue to provide care and shelter for a CLAWS cat you will return the cat to CLAWS with the understanding that there will be no refunds and the cat will NOT be exchanged for another cat.

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CLAWS requires of its adopters:


A commitment to keep your cat strictly indoors


A commitment to never declaw your cat


A commitment to care for your pet for its entire life

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