Surrendering a Pet

two Paw Prints OutlineYOU are Your Pet's Best Hope for a New Home!

Believe it or not, you are your pet’s best option for finding a new home. Some people think shelters or rescue groups would be best for placing your pet because we have experience, facilities, screening guidelines, etc. However, an individual, particularly one who knows the animal, can focus all their efforts on that pet, provide the most information to prospective adopters and best determine the appropriateness of a new home.

Also, shelters are stressful for animals. The shelter setting, no matter how nice, can bring on stress-related problems. Anxiety, aggression, and even illness is common, and these natural reactions may make adoption difficult or impossible. If you decide that you do need to re-home your pet, we want to help you become your pet’s best advocate for finding a home.

text Find Your Pet a new homeRehome with Love:

Rehoming your pet should be easy and stress free both for you and your pet. Experts at the largest non-profit pet adoption website, with support from The Petco Foundation, have created a simple, reliable, free program to help you place your pet from your loving home directly to another.

text Get your pet from one home to anotherFrom One Good Home to Another:

 You don’t have to surrender your pet! Now, you can go to Get Your Pet, the website for rehoming a dog or cat without surrendering them to the shelter. Get Your Pet is an online community that directly connects people who need to give up a pet with people who want to adopt a pet. The process costs you nothing — just publish your pet’s profile and thousands of potential adopters will see it!

Utilizing Facebook Groups for Rehoming

facebook logoUsing social media sites to rehome pets can create some reservations for people. There are safe ways to market your pet for rehoming. Please reach out if you would like assistance with biography writing for your pet. Also listed are a few Facebook rehoming groups to explore. 

 We are more than happy to courtesy post your pet to our Facebook page if they meet the following criteria. 

  • Your pet must be up to date on vaccines. 
  • Your pet must be spayed or neutered.  

Please send an email to titled “Courtesy Post”, please include proof of spay/neuter, proof of vaccines, multiple photos, a bio, and your information, including name, phone number, address, and a preferred method of contact. 

two Paw Prints OutlineFamily and Friends

Using your family and friends to help spread the word that you are rehoming your pet is a wonderful way to be successful. Be sure to let co-workers, church members, and anyone else in your circle know about it. Information can travel quickly by word of mouth.  

We understand that there may be other reasons you may need to surrender your pets. Listed below are some resources for other common surrender reasons. 


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Financial Assistance

  • Pet Food 

Animal Services has a community pet food bank for Burke County residents. Food can be picked up at 425 Kirksey Dr. Morganton NC 28655 during our operating hours Our Animal Enforcement officers may be able to deliver food if needed. Please give us a call if you need delivery assistance.  

  •  Veterinary Care Costs

Care Credit is a great option and most veterinary hospitals accept this as a form of payment. It’s easy and simple to apply online. 

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 The following rescues may be able to help financially with veterinary care. 

Vaccines and Wellness Care

Burke county Animal Services can provide the public with Rabies vaccines. Vaccines are given at 425 Kirksey Dr. In Morganton anytime during business hours. It is $10 per pet; A form of ID is required.

If financial assistance is needed for other vaccines and veterinary care, please refer to “Veterinary Care Costs” above. 

  • Humane Euthanasia

Burke County Animal Services does offer End of Life Care (humane euthanasia) for pets of Burke County by appointment only. Due to our policies, you are not allowed to be with your pet during this time. If you would like to be with your pet during this time, then you will need to contact a veterinary hospital. For financial assistance at a veterinary hospital please reach out to the resources listed above. There is a $10 surrender fee per pet for humane euthanasia services. Proof of ownership will be required (see “Proof of Ownership” to find out what are accepted forms of ownership). Animal Services does reserve the right to refuse humane euthanasia if we feel it is not in the best interest of the animal.  

Training and Behavior Modification

Burke County Animal Services does offer support for basic training and common behavioral issues. For more complex cases, you may reach out to the following trainers.

Michelle Watson/Bone Rogues Dog Training

(828) 291-2870

Top Dawg K-9

(828) 443- 3237

Away for Long Periods of Time?

Going out of town or worrying that your pet is going to be home alone too long during the day while you are at work? Trust us, your dog would much rather be home for 10 hours a day than in an animal shelter. Below are some resources to explore for additional care for your pets while you are away. 


If you are going out of town and need temporary housing for your dog, the following is a list of boarding facilities in Morganton that may be able to help you. 

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Doggy Day Care

If you work long hours and fear your pet being home alone for extended periods of time, the following is a list of doggy day cares that your pet may be able to visit on long workdays: 

If You Need to Surrender an Animal to the Shelter

two Paw Prints OutlineIf you have exhausted alternatives to relinquishment (Including trying to work through challenges, or trying to find a new home for your pet yourself with friends, neighbors, family or co-workers), please understand that we are a high admission shelter. Burke County Animal Services cannot accept every animal brought to our shelter immediately. We accept the surrender of owned cats and dogs by appointment only as space allows. You will be asked to fill out an owner surrender questionnaire prior to scheduling the appointment. Owner surrender questionnaires filled out online will need to be returned in person by the owner of the pet during operating hours.  Appointments are scheduled by priority and a staff member will reach out to provide additional resources we can offer and/or an appointment date/time. There is a $10 surrender fee per animal, which is applied to the costs we incur providing care to the pet(s). Proof of ownership is also required (see “Proof of Ownership” to find out what are accepted forms of ownership).  At the time of surrender, due to our volume, we cannot promise you that your pet(s) will find a new home. Unfortunately, due to high intake numbers, euthanasia is a possible outcome for any animal that comes to the shelter. If you have any questions, please call us at 828-764-9588.

Proof of Ownership – Accepted Documentation

  • A Microchip Registered to the Person Surrendering.
  • Veterinary Records with a Description of the Pet. 
  • Proof of Purchase Documentation.
  • Records from the Breeder with a Description of the Pet.
  • Photographic Timeline.