What is your application process?
Our application process involves several steps. Submitting an application online at www.labsandmore.org opens your application. Soon after applying you will be sent a welcome email instructing you to send in photos of your home and yard, and a copy of your lease agreement or pet policy if you rent. Once the required documents are received, your application will be assigned to an adoption coach who will contact you by phone or email to schedule a phone interview. Once the interview is complete, your application will be reviewed and you will be approved, approved with condition, or not approved to adopt from our rescue.
How long does it take to be approved for adoption?
During this time, our adoption processing times have increased resulting in communication being a bit delayed, it may take 7-10 days before you hear from us. Thank you for your patience.
Why do I have to wait so long to be approved?
The average processing time for applications is around 7-10 days, but please note that at different times of year it may be more or less. Labs and More is an entirely volunteer-run organization. We run this rescue on our own free time. We receive many applications for adoption each week, and oftentimes the same people processing applications are responsible for other tasks within the rescue. We do our best to process applications as promptly as we can. We understand your excitement about the prospect of adding a dog to your family – we are excited for you too! But we thank you for your patience and understanding throughout the application and adoption process.
Why do I have to send in pictures of my home in order to get approved?
Labs and More wants to save as many dogs as possible, but we balance this goal with a need to make sure that our dogs are going to appropriate homes where their safety, care, and well-being will be a priority. Not every home is an appropriate fit for every dog – and sometimes for any dog. In lieu of physical home visits, we ask applicants to sent in 8-10 photos of their home and yard, including fencing type and height. These photos are reviewed by the assigned adoption coach and then deleted. They are not saved, shared, or stored. If you are unwilling to submit photos of your home and/or yard, we will be unable to process your application for adoption.
I am moving into my new home soon. Can I send you MLS or other real estate photos of my new apartment/condo/house?
No. The photos you submit of your home must be your own photos that you take after you are moved in and settled in your new home.
I don’t have a yard. Can I adopt?
Yes, as long as the dog is the right fit. Labs and More works with families in all types of living situations. Not having a yard does not disqualify you from being approved to adopt. With that being said, please understand that we might determine that some dogs (due to age, size, or energy level) might need a yard. Living in a home without a yard does not mean your application will be outright denied, but you will need to be flexible in working with our adoption coaches to find a dog that is a fit for your home and lifestyle.
I rent. Can I adopt?
Yes, according to your rental agreement. Renters undergo an additional screening process. If you rent where you live, you are required to submit a copy of your lease agreement/pet policy/permission letter from your landlord. The documentation should say that you are allowed to own a dog/dogs. It should list any breed, weight, or age restrictions of the type(s) of dogs you are not allowed to adopt. It should also list your landlord or property manager’s contact information so that we can follow up with them if we have any additional questions.
My apartment has breed restrictions. Can I adopt?
Yes, within those restrictions. We often adopt dogs out to applicants with breed restrictions. You are required to submit a copy of your lease with breed restrictions. Labs and More does not DNA test our dogs. As most of our dogs are mixed breed, you will need to work with us to make sure that it does not appear that the dog you are interested in adopting looks too much like any of the breeds or mixes on your restricted breed list. The Adoptions Director and other rescue directors have the final say in whether an adoption can take place based on the physical characteristics of a dog compared to an applicant’s restricted breeds list.
If my adoption coach makes suggestions on what type of dog is best for me, am I bound by those statements?
Not necessarily. Sometimes suggestions are made by adoption coaches about a dog that would be the best fit for you, but these guidelines are not necessarily restrictions. Families can adapt to make different dogs work for their families and in their homes. Other times families are only conditionally approved. For example, a family may not be approved to adopt a dog under a certain age. Please note that the Adoptions Director and other rescue directors have the final say on whether an adoption will be done. If we have concerns that a dog you are interested in will not thrive in your home or living situation, we have the right to deny that adoption – even if you have been approved to adopt. Our goal is always to save many dogs, but we commit to keeping each dog’s well-being in the forefront of our mind.
What makes Labs and More different from other rescues and how they decide on approvals?
With Labs and More, you do not apply to adopt a specific dog or puppy. Our application process is not tied to a specific dog. When you apply with our organization, you are applying to be approved to adopt in general, not approved to adopt a specific dog. If the dog or puppy you are interested in gets adopted before you can meet them, you do not have to re-apply for adoption. Your application will continue to be processed.
I want to get my mom/boyfriend/grandmother/person a puppy as a gift. Can I do that?
No. Our rescue operates under the notion that dogs are family members, not gifts. The application must be filled out and submitted under the name and by the person who hopes to adopt a dog. Once your application is approved, every person in your household must come to meet the dog that you hope to adopt. If a family member is not computer-savvy but is looking to adopt a dog, you may help them submit the application under their own name and with their contact information entered for both email and phone. The person hoping to adopt the dog will need to submit home/yard photos and complete a phone interview as a part of their approval process.
I’ve adopted from you before. Do I have to apply again?
No. Once you are approved to adopt from Labs and More, your application stays on file. Please notify us if your address or contact information has changed, if you have moved, or with any other pertinent details. Please be prepared to have your current dog meet any prospective new dogs you come to meet.
I’m not allowed to own a dog where I live, but I’m adopting the dog as an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) and have a letter from my doctor. Can I adopt?
We require adopters to live in housing that allows dogs separate from ESA status. If the place where you currenlty live only allows you to have a dog per your ESA letter, you cannot be approved to adopt through Labs and More. We encourage you to seek housing that is dog-friendly and resubmit your application for adoption.
Where do you get your dogs?
Most of the dogs that come to Labs and More are dogs we pull from shelters. The majority of the time, these are dogs that came in to the shelters as strays off the street. A small number of dogs we take in are owner surrenders.
What is their story? What do you know about their history?
The amount of information that we have about each dog largely depends on the situation and context of how they came to us. Sometimes we know quite a bit about a dog’s history – but most of the time we know very little at all. Because so many of our dogs live in foster homes before they are adopted out, we are able to learn a great deal about their temperament, energy level, current training, and training needs. This helps us place each dog with a suitable family.
What breeds of dogs do you have?
Lots! You can check out our available dogs online at www.labsandmore.org/dogs. Each dog’s bio page lists their approximate age, approximate weight, and estimated breed/mix. Most of the dogs we rescue are mixed breed dogs.
Do you know what breed the dogs are?
Maybe. Our veterinarians and other rescue directors do our best to assess each dog’s physical traits and behavioral characteristics and base their listed breed(s) suggestion off that information. Our rescue does not DNA test our dogs.
Do you ever get in purebred or designer breed dogs?
Yes. Purebred dogs do occasionally wind up in rescue but are often adopted quickly. Labs and More does not discriminate on dogs based on non-purebred status. Most of our dogs are mixed breed dogs and their listed breed is a best estimate based off a veterinarian and other rescue directors’ opinions and experience.
Do you only have large dogs or will I find medium to smaller dogs?
Our mission is to rescue “Labradors, Retrievers, and other mixed breed dogs as we are able.” Look through the Dogs tab on our website and you will quickly see that we rescue a variety of ages, sizes, breeds, and mixes of dogs. With that being said, most of the dogs and puppies we rescue end up being medium to large in size when fully grown. If you are looking for a dog or puppy who will be under 25-30 pounds when fully grown, please check out the available dogs with No Wagging Tails Left Behind Rescue at www.nwtlb.org.
Are the dogs potty trained?
Sometimes. When a new adult dog comes to Labs and More, we rarely know if the dog is potty trained. A few days in a foster home usually helps us determine their level of house manners. Crate training is a great tool to research for helping you house train your newly adopted dog.
Are the dogs good with cats/kids/other dogs?
Sometimes. The information we have about each dog depends on if the dog has been moved to a foster home, how long the dog has been living in a foster home, and if that foster home has kids/cats/other dogs. Any information we have about a dog is listed on their online bio page at www.labsandmore.org/dogs.
Do you have puppies?
Yes. Our rescue takes in a lot of pregnant and nursing moms so we often have puppies available for adoption. Puppies become available for adoption once they are 8+ weeks old, have been spayed/neutered, are microchipped, and have received enough vaccinations to be adopted. You can view all our available dogs online at www.labsandmore.org/dogs.
Why do you have lots of puppies?
We have a lot of puppies because we rescue a lot of pregnant moms and nursing litters. Boarding is not a safe place for a puppy to live, but not every rescue is equipped with the number of puppy fosters that Labs and More is lucky to have. Our puppy fosters volunteer their time, sometimes up to 8-10 consecutive weeks, to foster litters of puppies who come in both with and without their mom. We are able to say yes to taking in pregnant moms and litters of puppies because we have people willing to foster them until they are adopted.
How big will my puppy get?
If you are adopting a dog that is estimated to be under 1 year of age, it is hard to predict how big the puppy will grow to be. Online calculators exist to help estimate the adult weight of a puppy, but even with these tools it is largely still just a guess. You can help have a better idea of what size a puppy may grow to be by adopting a puppy from a litter who came in with their mother, so that half of that puppy’s DNA is then known. Otherwise, you can adopt an older puppy or an adult dog. If you know that one size of dog would be “too big” or “too small” for you, you should plan to adopt a full-grown adult dog.
I see a puppy I might want to adopt. What breed was the dad?
While our rescue takes in a lot of pregnant moms, the dads are nearly always unknown. Once the puppies are born and start growing, we try to make a best guess at what breed(s) they might be mixed with. At the end of the day, their listed breeds are a best guess by our veterinarians and other rescue directors. Labs and More does not DNA test our dogs.
What happens next now that I’m approved?
Once approved, you get to move forward on your own timeline. Some families are ready to start coming to adoption events the following weekend while others want to wait until the perfect addition to their family comes along. You will begin receiving an email late every Friday night with the names of dogs who are scheduled to attend the adoption even the following day.
Do you have somewhere I can go to see your dogs, like at a shelter?
Labs and More does not have a physical location like a shelter. The majority of our dogs are fostered by families that live in and around San Diego County. The dogs who do not yet live in foster homes are housed in one of several boarding facilities that we pay and rent space from.
How do I meet your dogs?
Once approved, the way to meet our available dogs and puppies is at one of our weekly Saturday adoption events.
When/how often/where are the dog events?
We bring our dogs together almost every Saturday from 10:30am-12:30pm at one of two locations: Road Runner Sports San Diego or Road Runner Sports Carlsbad. The location for each weekend’s event is listed both on our Facebook page and on our website.
How many dogs attend each adoption event?
While it depends on the number of dogs we have who are ready for adoption at that time, it is common that 50-70 dogs and puppies attend our adoption events at Road Runner Sports each weekend.
How do I find out which dogs will be at each adoption event?
A list of all the dogs scheduled to attend each weekend’s adoption event is compiled throughout the week and is emailed out to approved families late on Friday night. Check your spam folder if you are approved but think you did not receive a list, as sometimes the message gets marked as spam. After several weeks, your email address phases off the list and will need to be re-added. If you are an approved adopter but have stopped receiving adoption event emails you can email firstname.lastname@example.org to ask to have your name added back to the list.
I have a specific dog I want to meet. How do I know if the dog I’m interested in will be at the next event?
During a given week, you can email your assigned adoption coach if there is a dog/dogs you are hoping will be at an adoption event. Sometimes not all our available dogs attend each weekend’s adoption event, but we can occasionally work to find a fostered dog a ride to the event if we know enough in advance that there is a family hoping to meet them at a given event.
I have a specific dog I want to meet. Do I have to wait for the event?
Not necessarily. An approved applicant can email their adoption coach during the week to express interest in one specific dog. Their adoption coach can then submit a request for that family to be placed on the dog’s wait list. Sometimes, if a dog is ready to be adopted and the foster family is available for (and trained on how to) do a meet, a private meeting can be arranged.
Saturdays don’t work for me. Can I meet a dog outside of an adoption event?
Possibly. Meets can sometimes be arranged depending on a variety of factors, including the foster family’s schedule, the foster family’s experience with fostering, whether the foster family has been trained on the paperwork process, and other general scheduling considerations. If attending our Saturday adoption events does not work with your schedule, please contact your assigned adoption coach when you see one specific dog you are hoping to meet and we will do our best to accommodate your request.
I want to meet a puppy. How does that work?
Puppies’ profiles usually show on the website as early as 6 weeks of age. At that young age, the puppies are not ready for you to come and meet. Having them show on the website early gives us time to collect and approve applications of families that are specifically interested in meeting puppies in that litter. The puppies are not available to meet they are 8+ weeks of age, are spayed or neutered, are microchipped, and have had enough vaccinations to be adopted. Some meets for puppies happen at the foster’s home, and other meets for puppies happen at our Saturday adoption event. This varies due to many factors, including but not limited to: the foster family’s schedule, the foster family’s experience with fostering, whether the foster family has been trained on the paperwork process, what day in the week the puppies are ready to be adopted, and other general scheduling considerations. We thank you in advance for your patience.
I already know which puppy I want to adopt. Can I come meet them and put down a deposit?
No. Meets for the litters do not begin until the puppies are ready for adoption. When you go to meet the puppies you will be invited to meet the puppies who are still available for adoption from that litter. Please keep in mind that our foster families are volunteering their time, so requests for multiple meetings for one family over a span of time cannot be arranged.
What is your waitlist process?
Occasionally there is more than one approved family that expresses interest in a particular dog or a specific litter of puppies. When more than one approved applicant is interested in meeting the same dog, a wait list forms.
Can I be on more than one waitlist at a time?
No. You can only be on one waitlist at at time.
I only want to adopt one puppy from a litter. Can you add me to the waitlist for that one puppy?
No. Wait lists for litters form for the entire litter, not for a single puppy. When the puppies are available for adoption and you are contacted about setting up a meet, you are welcome to ask if that one puppy is still available. If they are not and if you are not interested in meeting the remaining puppies in the litter, you can pass the meet and forfeit your spot on that litter’s wait list.
How do I find out that I am on the waitlist?
You will be notified by the Adoptions Director that you have been added to the waitlist.
If a dog that I’m interested in has a waitlist am I allowed to know where I’m at on that list?
No. The rescue does not release information about a person’s position on a wait list. There are too many variables (people adopt more than one puppy, people drop off the waitlist because they adopt elsewhere) and so the wait list order is constantly changing.
If I pay you more, can I be bumped up to a higher spot on the waitlist?
I found a dog on your site that I like and filled out an application, but I won’t be available for X days. Will the rescue reserve the dog for me?
No. We cannot hold dogs. If you are approved to adopt and the dog you are interested in is still available when you are ready to adopt, you can email your adoption coach to put in a request to meet the dog at that time.
I really want to adopt this particular dog and am approved to adopt, but I am going on vacation this week. Is there some way if I give the donation and sign the contract that I can pick up the dog next week? Can I pay to board the dog with you until I get back?
No. Families should hold off on meeting dogs if they know that they have upcoming travel that would prevent them from taking the dog home that day. Our rescue has limited resources as it is and cannot board adopted dogs. If you are approved to adopt and the dog you are interested in is still available when you are ready to adopt, we can set up a meet at that time.
Can I foster-to-adopt to see if the dog is a good match for my family?
No. While some rescues and shelters offer foster-to-adopt programs, Labs and More does not.
I already have a dog at home. Can my dog meet other dogs at the event?
As long as your dog is also up-to-date on vaccinations and is comfortable meeting other dogs on leash, we can arrange for dog-to-dog introductions if you are at an adoption event and hoping to meet an adult dog. Please note that this dog introduction/meeting does not apply to our puppies.
I have met the dog and I am ready to adopt him/her. When can I take them home?
That day! As long as the dog has already been spayed/neutered, the dog should go home with you at the time the adoption paperwork is signed and the adoption donation has been paid.
What if I don’t have a collar/leash at an adoption event?
We ask all approved families to bring a collar/leash with them to an adoption event, but sometimes it happens that a family forgets a leash or buys a collar in the wrong style/size. Every Labs and More dog wears a collar with a Labs and More ID tag at all times. If you do not bring a collar with you, the dog will go home wearing their Labs and More collar and tag. We have temporary slip leashes that we can give you to use to take the dog safely home. Labs and More always accepts cash donations towards collars and leashes, as well as donations of gently used collars and leashes that are no longer needed.
How much does it cost to adopt a dog?
The adoption fees vary based on the age and breed of the dog. Most adult dogs are $400 and most puppies are $475. In addition to this, adopting families pay a refundable $75 training deposit that is returned to them as long as the training as outlined on the Terms of Adoption agreement paperwork are completed and the request is submitted by the specified date.
What does the adoption donation cover?
Dogs almost always come to Labs and More in need of medical care. Most are not spayed or neutered, so the adoption donation goes partly towards offsetting that cost. When they come to us the dogs are usually not microchipped, and those that come in to shelters as strays need to be fully vaccinated before they can be adopted out. The adoption donation that you pay helps cover a portion of the cost of the spay/neuter, microchip, and vaccinations that the dog receives while with Labs and More. Many dogs also require additional medical care for things like viruses, parasites, and other various injuries. The rescue does fundraising events throughout the year to help cover the cost of these other medical bills since the adoption donation an adopting family pays does not cover these costs.
Why are your dogs so expensive? I thought they were rescue dogs.
Unlike a publicly-funded shelter, Labs and More receives $0 in public funding. We exist solely on donations, adoption donations, and from the funds raised from our other fundraising efforts. The adoption fee a family pays to adopt a dog from us only covers part of what it costs us to rescue, spay/neuter, vaccinate, and microchip the dog. Our fundraising team and rescue directors work to make up the difference through fundraising efforts all year long.
What type of payment do you accept? Do you take credit cards at an event or home adoption meets?
At an adoption event you can pay by cash, credit card, or check. We do not accept out of area checks, so be sure to ask if you may pay by check depending on in what part of Southern California you reside. If you are meeting a dog outside of an adoption event, please check with the foster family to see what kind of payment can be accepted. You may bring cash (correct change), pay by a check if you live in the area, and may be able to pay by credit card via the Donate tab on our website. Each foster family will have different experience with processing payments, so it is best to check with them before your meet.
After adopting a dog, how long does it take to get sent their medical records?
From the date that you adopt a dog, you should receive their medical records within 10 days. Please check your spam or junk folder if it has been longer than 10 days and you still have not received the records, as sometimes the emails get flagged as spam. If the email is not in your spam folder and it has been longer than 10 days since you adopted your dog or puppy, please email your adoption coach or email@example.com and a rescue director will reach out to you.
After adopting, when should we take our new dog/puppy to the vet?
It depends. If your dog or puppy is due for vaccinations, you should take them to the vet within the suggested timeframe for those vaccinations. Otherwise, we recommend taking your new dog into your vet 10-30 days after adopting them for their initial appointment and first wellness exam. Unless you are worried that they are sick or injured, it is best to wait until you have received your new dog’s records by email before bringing them in to the vet for their initial appointment.
Do I have to take my new dog to a specific vet?
No, once the adoption of the dog is complete you do not need to use a specific vet moving forward.
We don’t currently have a vet. What vets do you recommend?
Labs and More works with several veterinarians across San Diego County. We are happy to make suggestions based on where you live. Please email your adoption coach or firstname.lastname@example.org for our list of recommended veterinarians.
After I adopt, where do I get training for my pup?
Your training requirement can be completed at any organized group or individual training class with a certified dog trainer.
Do I have to bring my dog back to Labs and More for training?
No, Labs and More does not conduct training classes for the public.
Do you have a list of trainers you recommend?
Yes. If you would like a list of recommended trainers, please email your adoption coach or email@example.com to request our list of trainer recommendations.
What if it doesn’t work out after adoption?
As a part of the Terms of Adoption contract that you sign, you agree that the dog will come back to Labs and More if you are unable to keep him/her for any reason. No transfer of ownership can be approved without written consent from a rescue director. Furthermore, Labs and More has the first right of refusal for any dog that was originally adopted out from our organization. The process of relinquishing your dog begins by filling out the Release of Ownership form on our website at www.labsandmore.org/release-of-ownership.
Can I get my money back if I have to return this dog?
No. In the Terms of Adoption contract that you fill out, you sign a section acknowledging that the adoption fee is non-refundable.
Do you have employees?
No. Labs and More is an entirely volunteer-run organization.
Are donations to your group considered tax deductible?
Yes. We are a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Your adoption fee is a donation to the group and is considered a donation. Donations to our group may be considered tax deductible, please check with your tax advisor.
I’m not sure if I want to adopt a dog yet however I still want to be involved with the organization. How can I stay connected until I decide?
We suggest that families complete the approval process in advance of when they hope to take home a dog. Doing so allows you to be processed and fully approved so that when the right dog comes along, you do not have the 7 day average wait for your application to be processed. While you are waiting for the time to feel right to adopt a dog, there are numerous ways that you can stay involved in the organization. You can volunteer at our Saturday adoption events, volunteer at our fundraisers, or volunteer your time as a transporter, photographer, or even as a foster. Please see us at a Saturday adoption event or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about becoming a volunteer or foster family for Labs and More.