Animal Shelter

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Building closed; services by advance appointment only; staff on site daily.

4500 West Ox Road
Fairfax, VA 22030

Reasa Currier,

Steps to Adopting an Animal

EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 15: Easier and faster process to book an appointment to meet our available pets!

We are still not open for unscheduled walk-in visits, and masks are required to be worn in all County facilities, including the Animal Shelter.


Here's how the adoption process works:

  1. Those who wish to adopt a pet should email the Shelter to request an appointment: Sending a completed adoption questionnaire is now no longer required in advance (though filling one out in the Shelter at the time of adoption is still required)! We are also no longer accepting requests for specific pets, except for those in foster since we will have to arrange for them to return to the Shelter for a visit.
  2. It’s very helpful and will expedite your appointment if you include the following in your email: a) name, b) phone number, c) species of pet you'd like to visit/adopt.
  3. Shelter staff will schedule an appointment for interested adopters to visit pets.
  4. If you are interested in adopting a dog, and you have a dog at home already, please bring your dog in to meet with their potential new sibling.
  5. On the day of your appointment, please arrive on time. Staff reserves the right to cancel and reschedule the appointment if you arrive more than 15 minutes late.
  6. For Shelter staff to schedule as many appointments as possible on each given day, visits with pets should last no more than 45 minutes, to ensure we can help the next scheduled appointment.
  7. Once your appointment occurs, we hope you choose to adopt a pet! Adoption Counselors will help adopters finalize the adoption the same day the visit occurs, a process which normally takes ~30 minutes (not including the time spent visiting pets).

Check out our Petango page for an up-to-the-minute list of all our available pets, including dogs, puppies, cats, kittens, rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, and more!

Important Notes: 

  1. Scheduling an appointment is the first step in the adoption process.
  2. Please note that some pets will be available on a best fit basis for specific behavioral or species husbandry considerations. 
  3. Pets in foster will be noted as such next to their name, and in their bio. To meet a pet in foster, please include their name in your email requesting an appointment so we can be sure that pet is back in the Shelter to meet you.
  4. We will respond to all adoption inquiries as quickly as possible, but please be patient as Shelter staff are juggling many tasks!


Adoption Requirements: 

  1. Must be at least 18 years old, with a photo ID.
  2. Provide rabies vaccination certificate(s) for any current dogs and/or cats in the home.
  3. Have dog licenses for any current dogs (if you live in Fairfax County).
  4. Show proof that you’re allowed to have the pet where you live (proof of home ownership, OR lease with pet addendum, OR letter/email from landlord/homeowner).
Fairfax Virtual Assistant