Pet Surrender

We understand making the decision to surrender your pet is difficult and we are here to offer guidance and support.

Our goal is to help you resolve the problems you are experiencing so that you can keep your pet, but 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 and set your pet up for success with KC Pet Project.

As one of the largest shelters in our region, we urge you to consider every alternative to relinquishment and to fully utilize the resources we offer before surrendering your pet to a shelter. Due to crisis capacity at our shelter, surrender appointments are currently being booked up to 4-6 weeks out from date of request.

Supportive Resources

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 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.

Behavior Resources

If your pet is struggling with behavior issues, there are many resources available to help identify the issue and work towards a resolution. KC Pet Project has some helpful training and behavior information on our website. If you would like to work specifically with a trainer, you can review a list of local positive reinforcement trainers in the Kansas City metro area, visit Heartland Positive Dog Training Alliance.

We have also partnered with GoodPup, the nation’s leading 1-on-1 video chat training program to provide additional assistance for you and your dog(s)! Their trainers are skilled in addressing canine behavior and can help create a plan for you and pet(s). You’ll meet with your trainer once a week. And between sessions, you can text chat with their entire team whenever a question comes up. Go here to get started. You will receive a FREE session, and 20% Off for Life.

Pit Bull Friendly Housing

If you are in need of housing resources for you and your pit bull, check out My Pit Bull Is Family. My Pit Bull Is Family has great resources to help you keep your pet including housing options, renter’s insurance information, and much more. This non-profit organization is the nations largest all dog friendly housing database and is dedicated to ending housing and insurance discrimination for all dogs regardless of what they look like or their perceived breed.

ReHoming Support

As an alternative to relinquishing your pet to KC Pet Project, KCMO residents can list pet(s) on KC Pet Project’s website and privately rehome them. If you live outside of KCMO you can still list your pet on Rehome and have them posted through the national database.

Rehome can help you manage your pet’s adoption and safely find a new home for your pet. All you need to do is to set up your pet’s profile which takes less than ten minutes. Once complete, your pet’s profile will be posted on and will be seen by millions of visitors each month! You can review more information about this option, and get started here.

Free and Low-Cost Pet Support

Search for free or low cost pet support services like veterinary care, pet food pantries, temporary pet care and more using this curated database of resources provided by Human Animal Support Services and it’s partners. This first-of-its-kind platform helps pet owners find and access pet food banks, affordable veterinary care, and other support with their community.

Looking for assistance for your family?

We know how overwhelming life can be. Here are some human support service tools and resources for you to explore:

Pet Relinquishment

If you have exhausted alternative resources to relinquishment (such as attempting to overcome the challenges you are experiencing with your pet, or trying to Rehome your pet privately) then surrendering your pet may be the next option to explore. 

What does a typical day look like for surrendered pets?

Upon intake to the shelter, all animals are fully vaccinated and examined for any pressing medical issues. After their intake exam, animals are placed in a kennel as they await their next steps (medical evaluation, behavior evaluation, placement option, adoption, etc.).



KC Pet Project dogs are fed twice a day and it is the goal of the organization to ensure each dog gets a walk 2-3 times a day. However, due to high intake numbers, some dogs may only receive 1-2 walks a day. Dogs who benefit from social interactions with other dogs will also be on the list of dogs who attend Doggie Play Groups in the mornings when possible.

Dependent on the number of dogs at the shelter at any given time, dogs may spend the majority of their time at the shelter in their kennel. This can be especially difficult as dogs living in a kennel environment are exposed to many sounds, smells, and strangers (to them) throughout the day which can cause a high level of stress and affect their overall behavior and quality of life.



KC Pet Project cats are fed twice a day, and spend the majority of their time at our facility in their kennel. Staff and volunteers interact with cats every morning during morning cleaning, and work to make sure every cat’s emotional and physical needs are met during their time at our shelter through enrichment and socialization.

A shelter environment can be especially difficult for cats who tend to react strongly to changes in environment and the sounds and smells of other cats. Due to the high level of stress they experience at the shelter, some cats may attempt to hide during their stay which can make their stays longer as they aren’t seen by adopters who are walking through the adoption center.

While KC Pet Project does everything we can to ensure animals in our care are comfortable, we average anywhere from 30-50 intakes a day and care for over 15,000 animals each year.

An animal shelter is a stressful environment for any animal, but especially for owned pets. Our state-of-the-art shelter 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.

Surrender Fees

KC Pet Project charges surrender fees for all owner surrendered animals (and also charges a fee for animals brought in as lost). 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 allows our shelter to continue to support over 15,000 animals annually.

KC Pet Project makes an investment in every animal that comes to our shelter. 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 employs full-time shelter veterinarians and veterinary technicians to help ensure the health and well-being of all the animals in our care.


  • Single Animal Surrender Fee: $20
  • Single Animal Surrender Fee (Outside Jurisdiction Returns): $50
  • Litter Surrender Fee (3+ animals from the same litter): $75
  • Mother and Litter Surrender Fee: $95
  • KC Pet Project No-Show Policy (PDF)

Requesting a Surrender Appointment

As an open admissions municipal shelter, KC Pet Project cares for over 15,000 animals annually. We treat every animal’s life with the same level of care and importance. 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.

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. KC Pet Project is typically unable to accept same day surrenders. 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.

Notice of Risk of Euthanasia

While KC Pet Project is considered a “no-kill” shelter, that simply means that our shelter consistently reaches a lifesaving rate of 90% or higher. This rate is the industry benchmark that acknowledges the need to consider the best interests of the animals in our care, our community at large, and to avoid needless suffering. No-kill, however, does not mean that no animal is euthanized in our care. This is a common misconception. Euthanasia is a part of humane animal sheltering in all shelters. While we do not euthanize an animal for space, there are times when we must euthanize an animal for medical concerns, public safety concerns, and animals that may be suffering due to poor quality-of-life.

All animals under the care of KC Pet Project can become at risk of euthanasia if they develop and/or experience medical concerns, public safety concerns, or develop suffering due to poor quality-of-life. When possible, our team may contact a previous owner in an attempt to secure a live outcome for an at-risk animal.

To begin the surrender process, owners must submit an online pet surrender questionnaire for each pet.

(for litters of 2+ animals that are under 6 months of age).

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.

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. 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.

What to Bring to Your Appointment

ID & Payment

Bring your current, valid photo ID or other proof of residency for Kansas City, Missouri. The predetermined surrender fee for your pet will be due upon your arrival to your appointment. KC Pet Project accepts cash and major credit/debit cards. KC Pet Project does not accept personal checks.

Veterinary Records (if applicable)

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.

Medications & Personal Items (if applicable)

Have all of your pet’s medications readily available as well as your pet’s toys, leash, and other belongings from home. We cannot guarantee that toys, blankets and other personalized items will stay with your pet during their stay at KC Pet Project, but we do our best to keep familiar items with pets in order to help them adjust at the shelter.

Your Pet’s Appointment


Parking for owner surrender appointments is available in the north parking lot (outside of the Admissions and Vet Clinic entrances). Surrendered 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.

Secure Your Pet

Please make sure all dogs are on leash and ensure any flexi-leads or retractable leashes are locked when you enter the building. All cats must be secured in a sturdy carrier with the bottom of the animal carrier supported while you enter the building. This is required for your safety and your pet’s safety.


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.

No-Show Policy

Due to the increased need for support, all surrender appointments must be scheduled, appointments must be kept, and surrender fees paid in full. For that reason, KC Pet Project has put in place a firm No-Show Policy.

No-Show Policy (PDF)