Adoption Policies

Adoption Update 12/13/21:

Virtual adoptions and in-person adoptions are now available. Meet and greets are available on a limited basis as volunteer staffing is available. We will give priority to in-person adoptions. You can call 925-608-8400 for more information about our available pets.

To adopt: Our staff and volunteers are standing by to provide additional information and adoption counseling for our available animals.

Option 1: Come into the shelter during regular business hours. Meet and greets are available on a limited basis, with days and time provided below. Adoptions without a meet and greet (no physical interaction prior to adoption) are available at all times.

  • Cats & Kittens – Meet and greets are available for potential adopters on
    Tuesdays, Thursdays: 10am - 1pm
    Wednesdays: 10am - 7pm

    Saturdays: 10am – 5pm
    For all other business hours, meet & greets may be available pending volunteer availability. 
  • Dogs – Meet & greets for available dogs are available for potential adopters on
    Tuesday - Saturday: 10am - 1pm
    Wednesdays: 10am – 7pm

    For all other business hours, meet & greets may be available pending volunteer availability. 

Option 2: Submit an online application. Start by viewing our Available Animals. When you see an available animal you are interested in, click the image for more information or to submit an adoption application. Our adoption counselor volunteers will respond to online applications in the order in which they are received, usually within 72 hours. We will give priority to in-person adoptions. There is no guarantee that the animal you apply for online will still be available by the time our adoption counselors are able to reach you.

Adoption fees vary, and are listed on the Adoption Fees page.

Available Animals

All animals may be made available for adoption on any given day or time. Potential adopters may check the status of the animal(s) by calling 925-608-8400 or by checking the Available Animals page of our website, which is updated regularly.

All "Available" animals are eligible for adoption to the public only, and not eligible to transfer to a rescue, until 12:00pm the day after they are made "Available", with the exception of pit bulls and kittens/puppies four (4) months and under.

Final Transactions 30 Minutes Prior to Closing

CCAS asks all members of the public and transfer partners to be at the front counter to process final transactions no later than 30 minutes prior to closing (4:30pm on Tu, Th, Fri, Sat., and 6:30pm on Wed.). Please make note of this update as you prepare to pull animals from our Martinez shelter.

30-Day Get Acquainted Period


Adopters have a thirty (30) day trial period to get acquainted with their new pet and make sure that he/she is a proper "fit" for the family. We want this to be a happy situation for both you and your new pet, so if you encounter issues regarding behavior, please submit a Request for Pet Help to see if we can provide you with support or other assistance in resolving the issue.

If you have exhausted all options and decide to return your pet to the shelter, you will need to do so by making an appointment for an Adoption Return within that thirty (30) day period, by calling (925) 608-8400.

Return Policy/Exchange Information

All adoption fees are forfeited if you return your adopted pet. However, you have the option to exchange the adopted pet for another pet in our shelters. If you return the pet after the thirty (30) day period, a surrender fee is required.

If your pet should die due to illness during the trial period, a veterinarian verification will be required for a full refund of adoption fees. Fees and deposits are NOT REFUNDABLE if the animal runs away, is lost or is given away, or if the animal is injured, killed or euthanized due to injury.

Free Physical Exam

Within 72 hours (Sundays and holidays excluded) of adopting your new pet you may take your pet to a participating vet for a free exam. Please check with your vet’s office to see if they offer this service and if an appointment is needed.

Important: There will be a charge for all vaccinations, medications, and/or supplies. If the animal is sick, have the veterinarian state the problem on the bottom of your receipt and sign and date it. Bring the animal, along with the signed receipt and all other paperwork, to Animal Services within 48 hours after the exam for a refund of your adoption fees or exchange. Any fees accrued at the vet are non-refundable

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why do I have to pay for a license for a cat? Why do I have to spay/neuter the animal I adopt?

Answer: County Ordinance 416-8.016 states "Dogs or cats may not be sold for purposes other than keeping of pets, and may not be sold without first having been licensed, neutered or spayed, and vaccinated against rabies, or a fee therefore having been deposited. State Law requires that all animals adopted from a shelter be spayed or neutered.

2. Why do I have to microchip my animal?

Answer: The Animal Services Department policy is to microchip all animals before they leave the shelter. By micro-chipping your pet, you give your pet the best possible chances of being returned to you if it gets out. A microchip ensures permanent identification that cannot be lost.