Pet Relinquishment

We’re Here to Help

Our Keep ‘Em Together, KC program is designed to help you keep your pet instead of surrendering them to the shelter. Contact our Pet Support Center to discuss your needs and challenges to help you keep your pet instead of surrendering them to the shelter. Our team can provide:

  • Emergency pet food
  • Pet resource assistance
  • Temporary housing in times of crisis and hardship
  • Referrals to outside social service and animal welfare agencies

While our goal is to help you resolve the problems you are experiencing so that you can keep your pet, we also understand that some problems are out of your control and may require you to relinquish your pet. Our Pet Support Specialists will walk you through the process to help try to set your pet up for success with KC Pet Project.

KC Pet Project is the open-admission animal shelter providing services for the city of Kansas City, Missouri. We accept an average of 10,000 animals annually from our jurisdiction that needs shelter regardless of age, health, species, breed, or behavior, or whether it is a stray or owned animal. There are many community and homeless animals that need shelter and care, and for owned pets, the animal shelter should be a last resort for rehoming– even the best of shelters can’t compare to a loving home. As one of the largest shelters in our region, we urge you to consider every alternative to relinquishment and to utilize fully the resources we make available before surrendering your pet to a shelter.

Pet Relinquishment

There are several alternatives to relinquishing and surrendering your pet to the shelter. If you have exhausted alternative resources to relinquishment, including trying to overcome the challenges you are experiencing with your pet or trying to rehome the pet on your own with friends, family, or neighbors, then surrendering your pet may be the next option you explore. As one of the largest shelters in our region, we urge you to consider every alternative to relinquishment and to utilize fully the resources we make available before surrendering your pet to a shelter.

Surrendering Your Pet

KC Pet Project is the open-admission animal shelter providing services for the city of Kansas City, Missouri. We accept an average of 10,000+ animals annually from our jurisdiction that need shelter regardless of age, health, species, breed, or behavior, or whether it is a stray or owned animal. There are many community and homeless animals that need shelter and care, and for owned pets, the animal shelter should be a last resort for rehoming – even the best of shelters can’t compare to a loving home.

Surrendering your pet to a shelter means you are giving up all rights to that animal. KC Pet Project is not required to notify you of any development regarding the health or status of a pet surrendered to the shelter. You may use our website for updates on the availability of an animal.

KC Pet Project only accepts and schedules owner/surrender assessments by appointment. Animals are not accepted for intake at any other KC Pet Project location other than the Kansas City Campus for Animal Care located at 7077 Elmwood Avenue, Kansas City, Missouri, 64132.

What You Should Expect

KC Pet Project makes an investment in every animal. Upon arrival to the shelter, each animal is vaccinated and dewormed and any obvious medical conditions are addressed as much as possible. KC Pet Project does have a full-time shelter veterinarians and veterinary technicians on staff to help ensure the health and well-being of all the animals in our care.

As an open admissions municipal shelter, KC Pet Project cares for over 10,000 animals annually. We treat every animal’s life with the same level of care and importance. As a no-kill community, we work hard to save the lives of healthy, treatable animals that enter into our shelter. While we do not euthanize an animal for space, there are times where we have to euthanize an animal for medical concerns, public safety concerns, and concerns of quality-of-life.

An animal shelter is a stressful environment for any animal, but especially for owned pets. While we have a state-of-the-art shelter, it cannot compare to the love and care that a pet receives at home. We urge you to exhaust all other resources and alternatives before surrendering your pet to KC Pet Project. This helps our organization ensure shelter is available for the pets that need it most — those who are lost, displaced, homeless, injured, or sick.

Surrendering your pet to our shelter means you are giving up all rights to that animal. We are not required to notify you of any development regarding health or status. Nor, will we give the animal you surrendered special treatment over another animal. You may use our website or call the shelter for updates.

Requesting an Owner Surrender Appointment

If you are unable to rehome your pet after considerable effort, you can arrange to surrender your pet to KC Pet Project at the Kansas City Campus for Animal Care by appointment. In order for our team to better assess each unique pet in need of our support, it is important that we gather as much information as possible about the pet’s history, including living conditions, behaviors, medical care, and socialization.

To begin the surrender process, owners must submit an online pet surrender questionnaire for each pet. If you are unable to submit a form online, you can contact our Pet Support Center team who will gather the information and triage the case over the phone. The phone assessment process could take up to thirty (30) minutes.

It is important that the answers provided for surrender questionnaires and assessments are honest and detailed. This information is all KC Pet Project has to help set the pet up for success while in our care and in-depth information allows us to find the best outcome for the pet, including placement options and matchmaking for adoptions.

Once our team has received the questionnaire information, a Pet Support Specialist will contact the owner to gather any additional information, discuss what options are best for the pet, and/or schedule an intake appointment for the pet to be surrendered to KC Pet Project. KC Pet Project is typically unable to accept same day surrenders, but we do our best to keep the surrender process moving forward and to schedule an intake appointment for surrender as quickly as possible.

There is a $20.00 owner surrender fee per pet. This fee helps KC Pet Project cover a small portion of the costs associated with caring for the pet. KC Pet Project is a 501c3 nonprofit organization, collecting fees allow our shelter to continue to support over 10,000 animals annually. Donations made to KC Pet Project above fees paid are always welcome and are tax-deductible. If you need to discuss your financial assistance, please speak with a Pet Support Specialist.

How To Prepare

  1. Submit a Surrender Questionnaire for each pet through our website. Our staff use these forms to gather important information about your pet so they can better assist you in the surrender process and better support the pet while in our care.
  2. A Pet Support Specialist will return your call to discuss the surrender process, and when appropriate, schedule an intake appointment at the Kansas City Campus for Animal Care. The phone assessment for owner surrenders can take thirty (30) minutes or more. KC Pet Project receives a high volume of calls each day, which are returned based on priority and in the order they are received. Appointments are scheduled based on appointment availability, available space within the shelter, and in consideration for KC Pet Project’s capacity to care for the pet. Appointments are required if you need to surrender your owned pet to the shelter.  As an open admissions municipal shelter, KC Pet Project only accepts animals from Kansas City, Missouri.
  3. Have all veterinary records ready as soon as possible. Veterinary records can be sent by email to [email protected]. It is important to ask your veterinarian to send your pet’s full written veterinary medical records and to include the animal’s name, the animal’s description, your first and last name, and your phone number. Please confirm that your pet’s records have been received prior to your scheduled appointment.
  4. Have all of your pet’s medications readily available as well as your pet’s toys, leash, and other belongings from home.

What To Do For Your Pet’s Appointment

  1. Parking. Parking for owner surrender appointments is available in the north parking lot. Surrendered owned animals are accepted by appointment only in the Admissions and Pet Support Center office located next to the vet clinic on the north side of Kansas City Campus for Animal Care.
  2. Secure your pet. Please make sure all dogs are on leash and all cats are in a sturdy carrier. It is important to support the bottom of the animal carrier while you enter the building and to ensure any flexi-leads or retractable leashes are locked when you enter the building. This is required for your safety and your pet’s safety.
  3. ID and payment. Bring your current, valid photo ID or other proof of residency for Kansas City, Missouri, and the $20.00 surrender fee to help cover the cost of the animal while in our care. KC Pet Project accepts cash and major credit/debit cards. KC Pet Project does not accept personal checks.
  4. Records and medications. Bring all of your pet’s veterinary medical records, including vaccination history, with you to your appointment. This is incredibly important if you have not confirmed the receipt of your pet’s records prior to your appointment time. Please be sure to bring all of your pet’s current medications with you.
  5. Intake. You should be prepared to spend up to thirty (30) minutes while at the shelter to answer additional questions about your pet and complete the required paperwork for owner/guardian pet relinquishment. The intake interview, including verification of all information, as well as the completion of paperwork is required. The transfer of ownership to the shelter requires an owner’s signature by law. The owner must be 18 years of age or older, or accompanied by a legal guardian who is 18 years of age or older.

Overcoming Challenges

Before you begin looking for a new home for your pet, begin looking for resources to help you overcome your current challenges.

PitBull Friendly Housing

If you are in need of housing resources for you and your pitbull, check out My PitBull Is Family. My PitBull Is Family has great resources to help you keep your pet including housing options, renter’s insurance information and much more.

Behavior Resources

If it is a behavior issue, there are a lot of resources on the internet to assist you. KC Pet Project has some helpful information on our website. For a list of local positive reinforcement trainers in the Kansas City metro area, visit Heartland Positive Dog Training Alliance. Our Pet Support Center may also be able to assist you in finding an appropriate behaviorist to work with.

Pet Support Through KC Pet Project

If you are considering relinquishing your pet to KC Pet Project, our Pet Support Center is here to help you navigate that difficult decision. Our goal is to help you resolve the problems you are experiencing so that you can keep your pet. Our Pet Support Specialists can discuss the various programs and services we offer that may assist you in overcoming many of the challenges you may be facing with your companion. If you are looking for resources outside of the programs and supportive services offered by KC Pet Project, click here or contact us.

Rehoming Support and Services

KC Pet Project can help you find the right home for your pet through our supported rehoming services.