The following is a detailed outline of the steps you'll need to take to surrender your pet as well as information that may help you with this process. 

** If you adopted your pet from a No-Kill shelter, rescue, or breeder, please contact them first. Many No-Kill shelters, rescues, and breeders will not only accept their pets back immediately, but often ask you to sign a contract during the adoption process agreeing to do so. **


After filling out the surrender form you will have taken the first step to surrendering your pet(s). From there, a PAWS Staff member will be in contact with you to set up a behavior evaluation for your pet. Please note that we are unable to accept animals that are a potential risk to the health and safety of our staff, volunteers, or any other persons who may come in contact with them while under our care. In addition to this, we cannot guarantee intake into our adoption program for any animal regardless of health, temperament or how far along in the surrender process they are.

PAWS Shelter of Central Texas is a limited intake facility and as such you will be placed on a waiting list until space is available.


Behavior Evaluations:

Evaluations are scheduled Tuesday-Thursday between 12-5 and will typically take about 30 minutes per pet. You must make an appointment. We perform a basic, non-stressful temperament test, which may involve interacting with other animals and people at the shelter. Please bring your dog(s) on a secure collar/leash and cats should be contained in a carrier.

Required Veterinary Care:

**All vaccinations and tests must be clinically documented. Vaccines must be current within 6 months.**


  • DHPP / DHLPP vaccine
  • Bordatella vaccine
  • Rabies vaccine
  • Heartworm Test negative result within 30 days
  • Spayed or Neutered


  • FVRCP vaccine
  • Rabies vaccine
  • Feline Combo Test (FeLV/FIV*) negative result within 60 days
  • Spayed or Neutered

A positive FIV test result does not always disqualify a cat from our adoption program, however, we are only able to accept FIV positive cats on a case by case basis.

Unfortunately, we are unable to accept animals who test positive for Heartworms or Feline Leukemia (FeLV). Acceptance for cats that have tested positive for Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) will be determined on a case by case basis. Please see below for help and further information regarding vaccinations, spay and neuter services, and veterinary assistance.

Lastly, PAWS Shelter of Central Texas is a 501(c)3, non-profit, No-Kill organization. We rely solely on donations to keep our shelter doors open and as such, require a minimum fee of $55.00 for surrendered pets.


The following businesses offer free or low-cost options for the required medical care.

P.A.L.S. (Prevent a Litter) - Hays County (and sometimes surrounding county) residents may qualify for free spay or neuter vouchers through this organization. It is a very simple process to apply.

Emancipet - Mobile clinics providing free and low-cost spay and neuter surgeries in Hays, Caldwell, Travis county areas. They offer low-cost vaccination and other veterinary care at their Central Austin location.

Vangard Vet - Mobile clinic provides low-cost vaccinations in Hays, Travis, and Bexar County.

SNAP (Spay - Neuter Assistance Program) - Mobile clinics providing free or low-cost spay, neuter and veterinary services in and around San Antonio.

Kings Highway Animal Clinic - Veterinary clinic located in San Marcos. Has a monthly vaccine clinic.

Kyle Animal Hospital - Veterinary clinic located in Kyle. Has a twice-monthly vaccine clinic.



Surrendering your pet doesn't always have to be the only option. If you are having behavior issues with your pet, it is highly recommended that you stick it out and try a training class or consulting with a behaviorist. Please keep in mind that owning a pet is a partnership. Through training, you learn how to best communicate with your pet and your pet, in turn, learns how to respond to you.

Re-homing can be extremely traumatic for your pet and should only be considered when all other options have been exhausted. Below is a list of training options:

The Humane Society - Offers advice and information for routine issues that you can take care of at home.

Dog School Austin - Certified Canine Training and Behavior Specialists in the South Austin Area.

Sit Means Sit - Austin and San Antonio area training specialists.

The Canine Center - Austin area training specialists.

Schrodi Memorial Training Fund - Created to help owners who can’t afford top dollar training, be able to train and keep their dogs.

The Catsultant - Specializes in Feline behavior

Petsmart and Petco also offer affordable and effective training courses.



If you are unable to meet the requirements or need to surrender your pet immediately, your county facility will intake your pet.

San Marcos Regional Animal Shelter - Hays County

Austin Animal Center - Travis County

San Antonio Animal Care Services - Bexar County

Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter - Williamson County (excluding Georgetown)

City of Georgetown Animal Shelter - Georgetown

Bastrop County Animal Control - Bastrop County

Humane Society of New Braunfels - Comal County and the City of New Braunfels

Guadalupe County Animal Control - Guadalupe County

Lockhart Animal Shelter - Caldwell County and the City of Lockhart



Click the apartment of your choice and scroll to the pet policy section for details:

Pet Friendly Apartments in Kyle

Pet Friendly Apartments in Austin

Pet Friendly Apartments in San Marcos

Pet Friendly Apartments in New Braunfels
If your county is not on this list, contact 311 to find out which shelter will take your pet.

Feral Cats and Kittens:

The Austin Humane Society has a fabulous TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return) program for feral cats. This program is an effective and humane way for communities to control the feral cat population and eventually eliminate colonies.

Other groups in Austin  who provide assistance with feral cats:

If you are in need of food assistance, click here to find a food bank near you.


For any additional questions, please contact