DeKalb County Animal Services is overwhelmed with a tremendous amount of homeless pets. Because we do not want to euthanize your pet or euthanize another pet to make space for your pet, surrendering your pet to us should only be done as a last resort. Owner surrenders are accepted at DeKalb County Animal Services on an appointment-only basis and there is a $35 surrender fee per animal.  We generally only accept adoptable pets so if your pet is elderly, has behavior issues or is sick it is your responsibility to take it to a veterinarian for treatment, hire a trainer or have it euthanized at a private veterinarian. During times of high intake or when our shelter is full, accepting owner surrendered animals may be completely suspended.  We ask that you read the tips below and try to find another solution before considering surrendering an animal to us. There is no fee to return an animal that has been previously adopted from the Fulton County Animal Services shelter.

DCAS does not provide owner requested euthanasia as a service. Owners needing to euthanize sick, elderly, injured, etc. animals need to take them to a licensed veterinarian to have them euthanized.  These are not adoptable pets and it is the responsibility of the owner to have the pet humanely euthanized. Check with your own private veterinarian or non-profit clinics such as Dearborn Animal Hospital, Wellpet Humane or the Atlanta Humane Society for their current prices and policies regarding euthanasia.  Please note that Wellpet Humane gives discounted rates for parvo treatment in puppies.

Tips for rehoming your pet:

  • Start looking for a new home for your pet right away ... do not wait until the last minute! It may take time and effort to find your pet a new home.
  • Spay and neuter your pets and bring them up-to-date on shots to make them more attractive to a new owner.
  • If possible, we want to help you keep your pet!  Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for referrals to resources that might help you if you are experiencing behavioral problems with your pet, if you can't afford pet food or a dog house, if your pet has fleas you can't afford to treat, if you can't afford vet care, if you can't afford to spay/neuter your pet, etc. 
  • Let all of your friends, relatives and neighbors know you are looking for a new home for your pet. Email pictures and post pictures of your pet on Facebook. Hang flyers at veterinary clinics and pet supply stores.
  • If your pet was originally adopted from a local shelter or rescue group then contact them because they may be willing to take your pet back. (Note - some rescue groups contractually require you to return the pet to them if you can no longer keep it).
  • Take your pet directly to local animal shelters such as the Atlanta Humane Society and GA SPCA, Furkids or Atlanta Pet Rescue to see if they will take your pet.  Note that animal shelters are more likely to accept your pet if they see it in person (rather than calling) -- a short drive may save your animal's life!  
  • Google search for rescue groups (i.e. "cat rescue Atlanta" "cocker spaniel rescue Atlanta" "pit bull rescueAtlanta" "mixed breed dog rescue Atlanta" ) and call and email  numerous rescue groups and shelters to see if they will take your pet. If your pet is a purebred, contact all the purebred groups on the list for that breed. Don't give up!  You may have to contact ten or more before you find one that can help.
  • If you are moving to a new city, contact local humane societies and rescue groups there.  They may not have as overwhelming a problem with unwanted pets and may have more resources that can help you.

If you have exhausted all efforts to find your adoptable pet a home, fill out the Owner Surrender Appointment Request Form.  Please upload a digital photo of the pet with the form if you have one.  Please note -- you must make an appointment before bringing in your pet.