We are committed to reuniting all lost pets with their owners. In cases where this is not possible, the pet is placed for adoption in hopes of finding a new and loving home. Check out our available animals for adoption.

Thinking about getting a pet? Read through the Selecting a pet section below and watch the Your Life video at DurhamRegion.com to find out how to choose the best pet for your home.

Adoptable Animals 

  • Visit our Adoptable Pets page to see what pets are still looking for a home, complete an online adoption application form or find more information on our adoption process.
  • Once an online adoption application is submitted, Animal Services will review each application and if selected, will arrange a phone interview to determine potential next steps. If selected, arrangements will be made to book an appointment to meet your potential new family member.
  • Interested adopters may visit the shelter at anytime however we recommend calling ahead to schedule a day and time to ensure we can dedicate our time with you.

Satellite adoption process

  • Select cats may be viewed directly at our satellite adoption site located at PetSmart (1899 Brock Rd). Cats adopted through a satellite site do not require an online application form. If interested in adopting a cat from a satellite site, please visit the store first to see the cat, complete an interview, and if selected finalize the adoption process.

View Adoptable Pets

Adoption Locations

Thanks to the partnerships we have formed, we have 3 permanent satellite adoption sites in Pickering. If you are looking for a new family member, please check our Adoptable Pets page to see which location each adoptable animal is at. 

Pickering Animal Shelter
1688 Highway 7
Pickering, ON

View Shelter Hours

Satellite Adoption Locations


PetSmart logo1899 Brock Road, Unit 4 
Pickering, Ontario, L1V 4H7
Google Map

Pet Valu

Pet Value Logo705 Kingston Road
PickeringON L1V 6K3
T: 905.492.7381
Google Map

Global Pets

Global Pet Foods1822 Whites Road - Amberlea Rd Shopping Plaza
Pickering, ON
Google Map

Selecting a Pet

Deciding to get a pet of any kind is a big responsibility, but getting a dog is an even a bigger deal. First you need to decide what type of pet fits your lifestyle. Below are some helpful tips that will get you started in your search for finding the perfect pet.

Questions to ask yourself

  • Animals are never a good gift. Make sure the whole family is in agreement of getting a pet. It is everyone's responsibility!
  • If you think you are ready for a dog, do you have the time to spend with a dog? The average family is gone 8-10 hours per day, does a dog fit into your lifestyle?
  • How big is your family? Are there kids? If so, will they be a part of the training and companionship of this animal?
  • Can you afford it? Whether you buy a pet from a reputable breeder or adopt from a rescue, you will still have costs associated with it. Veterinarian costs, training, food, licensing, crates, toys etc. You always have to expect the unexpected. Visit Pets Plus Us for the Estimated Costs of Owning a Cat or Dog.

Check out the websites below for further details on choosing the right pet, as well as the care and nutrition required for various types of pets.

Considering adopting a dog? Make sure you consider the following:

  • Shedding or non-shedding?
  • There are 7 groups of dogs: Working, sport, non-sporting, herding, hounds, terriers and toys. Each breed has their own natural traits to consider, these traits cannot be changed. For example, Border Collies are bred for herding, some larger breeds were bred for carting, etc.
  • How much space do we have?
  • Do I want a casual pet, less active or a dog for competition that is high energy?
  • How much time am I willing to spend on grooming?
  • Dogs are natural protectors, am I looking for a dog with stronger instincts?
  • Rescue animals sometimes need more training, am I willing to take the extra time and expense in dealing with the dog's behaviours?

Where should I get a dog?

This is a question many people ask, and presents a buyer beware scenario. Don't be fooled by flashy gimmicks or price slashing! There are 2 options, a reputable breeder or a rescue group (Animal Services, Humane Societies, all breed rescues, etc.).

If you are not particular about having a purebred dog, then go to a rescue, humane society or your local shelter. There are lots of dogs that need a good home, give them a chance.

If you are interested in a purebred dog, the following list will provide you with information on how to find a reputable breeder.

Tips on finding a reputable dog breeder:

  • Breeders breed for temperament as a number one priority
  • Breeders should be a member in good standing with a major kennel club (CKC, AKC etc.)
  • They follow the code of conduct and ethics laid out in the by-laws from the kennel clubs
  • They should be very knowledgeable about their breed and can answer all your questions
  • Reputable breeders will have only 2 - 4 litters per year from different parents
  • Reputable breeders will give you references of other buyers
  • Reputable breeders test all their breeding stock against genetic deficiencies
  • Reputable breeders will give you the opportunity to meet the sire, dam or both
  • A purebred dog comes with CKC or AKC papers. It is illegal to sell a purebred dog without these papers. These papers are the Sire (father) and Dams (mothers) lineage (family tree).
  • Reputable breeders will have you sign a non-breeding contract. This guarantees that the animal will be sterilized.
  • A reputable breeder is available for support throughout the life of the dog
  • Reputable breeders should give you a minimum 2-year health guarantee against any genetic defects. If there is a problem they will either assist with the vet bill, replace the dog or refund your money.
  • A reputable breeder will always take back the dog if something occurs where you are unable to keep the dog.

Be careful when looking for a breeder. Just because they advertise and have a flashy website doesn't mean they are reputable.

For more information on choosing the right pet/breed and for breeders in your area, speak with your local veterinarians, dog trainers, or visit the following websites:


Why sterilize your pet?

Part of our adoption policy is to sterilize all of our pets before adoption. This helps to reduce the number of unplanned pregnancies, reducing the number of unwanted animals in the community and, in turn, the number of animals entering into our facility. Sterilization of dogs and cats also has many proven health benefits. Listed below are just a few of them.

Benefits of Neutering Male Dogs

  • helps to prevent diseases associated with the prostate gland
  • helps to prevent certain types of hernias and tumours
  • decrease in wandering/roaming to find female mates
  • reduction of aggressive behaviour towards other male dogs
  • reduction of urine marking
  • reduction of inappropriate mounting

Benefits of Spaying Female Dogs

  • helps to prevent mammary cancer (especially if prior to the first heat)
  • helps to prevent reproductive organ disease and ovarian cancer
  • prevention of unplanned pregnancies
  • prevention of pseudo-pregnancy behaviours

Benefits of Neutering Male Cats

  • helps to prevent testicular cancer
  • decrease in wandering/roaming to find female mates (less likely to be get lost or be in a traumatic accident, e.g. hit by car)
  • decrease in fighting with other male cats & reduces risk of cat diseases such as Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)
  • reduction in urine spraying
  • reduction in aggression
  • increase in affection towards people
  • reduction in interspecies aggression

Benefits of Spaying Female Cats

  • helps to prevent mammary cancer
  • helps to prevent ovarian cancer
  • helps to prevent unwanted/unplanned pregnancies
  • helps to prevent undesirable ‘on heat’ behaviours such as restlessness and being highly vocal
  • increase in affection towards people
  • reduction in interspecies aggression

What is early sterilization?

Early sterilization is when a dog or cat is spayed or neutered before the traditional 5-6 months of age. Depending on their individual size and health, the kittens at our facility are generally sterilized between 8-12 weeks of age. Sterilizing our animals at an earlier age reduces the amount of time these young animals spend in our shelter. This decreases their chance of becoming sick while in our care and allows our adopters to take their new family member home at an earlier age, giving them more time to build a bond with their new family member. In addition, research has shown that early sterilization is a faster procedure with less tissue trauma. The anaesthetic recovery and healing time for the wound is also much shorter than traditional sterilization practices.

This information was taken from the RSPCA research report on SPCA research report on early desexing of dogs and cats.

Adoption Details

Adoption fee includes:

  • the initial set of vaccinations
  • 2 month trial of Pets + Us pet insurance 
  • a City of Pickering Animal Licence
  • microchipping and deworming of animals
  • Through a partnership with Petcademy, we now offer free online training and behavioural support with access to online courses and certified trainers 24 hours a day for all adopters. 
  • sterilization of animals before adoption (see Why Sterilize Your Pet information above)
  • access to the Petfirst Program offered by Royal Canin as well as receive coupons to purchase food.
  • Ren's Pets Adoption Package including a Gift Card as well as information specific to the type of pet adopted. (if adopted from shelter)
  • cats adopted from PetSmart receive an Adoption Package from PetSmart with discounts, coupons and information specific to the type of pet adopted.

Although every effort is made to ensure that all animals are spayed/neutered before adoption, it is not always possible. In situations where cats/kittens are too young to be sterilized, a $75 rebate certificate is provided.

We advise those interested in adopting an animal from us to do the following:

  1. Visit our Adoptable Animals Page. If you find an animal you are interested in, complete our Online Adoption Application Form.
  2. Once submitted, Animal Services Staff will review each application and if selected, staff will arrange a phone interview to speak to you further about the animal. Staff will follow up with a virtual meet and greet.
  3. Successful candidates will complete paperwork electronically and a date and time will be coordinated for pick-up of your new furry friend
  4. Enjoy the new member of your family!

Adoption Fees: 

  • cat $165 +HST
  • dog $350 +HST
  • adoption fees for small animals vary by species
  • All adoption fees are subject to HST

Accepted Payment:

  • Debit
  • Visa
  • MasterCard