Adopt A Pet

WAIF uses a walk-in and queue-based first-come, first-served adoption system. We are open for adoptions Wednesday–Sunday from 12 pm–4 pm.

Animals at WAIF animal adoption facilities in Coupeville (dogs and cats), Freeland (cats only), Oak Harbor (cats only)  are either unclaimed strays or owned animals surrendered for adoption. All animals go through a set waiting period. In the case of stray animals, the waiting period, is five days for Island County and for the City of Oak Harbor, which allows the owner a chance to find their pet. If a surrendered animal, WAIF will endeavor to secure as much information on the animal as is possible. Regardless, whether a surrender or stray, the waiting period allows WAIF the opportunity to assess the animal for temperament and health and to ensure their suitability for adoption. Not all pets are approved for adoption. Please view our adoption guidelines if you are considering adoption of a WAIF shelter animal.

All adoption locations operate on a walk-in basis (first-come, first-served). Wait times will be determined upon arrival and be based on the number of people ahead of you. If have found a pet that has been determined to be adoptable, you will need to complete an Adoption Profile Form available at WAIF adoption locations. Completing an adoption profile is the first step of the adoption process but does not indicate an approved adoption. WAIF staff will review the completed form and evaluate the adoption from both the adopter’s and pet’s perspective. We will inform the adopter of next steps which may entail meet and greets with the entire household (family and pets already in the home) and consults about pet restrictions. We want to make certain we have a good match. If there is more than one person interested in an animal, the process will be treated on a first-come, first-served basis for those who arrive at adoption facilities. The potential adopter who is first in line with an approved application will be able to adopt the pet. For those animals who garner high interest, potential adopters often times will arrive at adoption facilities before opening at 12:00 p.m. (Wednesdays thru Sundays) to secure their place in line.

If you don’t find what you are looking for in a pet on our website, please call us at (360) 678-8901 or visit our Home To Home private placement list here. We offer this list as a free resource for private pet owners who are looking to rehome their own pets. These are not WAIF pets and WAIF bears no liability or responsibility. Potential adopters will work directly with private pet owners to conduct their own evaluations and adoptions.

Fee Schedule

All applicable fees are disclosed on the WAIF Fee Schedule. Primary fees break into two areas–adoption fees and medical fees. Fees subsidize the cost of care provided and do not cover that cost in its entirety. In fact, WAIF relies heavily on donations to supplement the cost of services. In addition to adoption and medical fees, license fees may also be required, and are dictated by the municipal ordinance which governs your place of residence.

Primary Fees

Dog Package

Adoption Fee

Dogs 8 years old and above $80
Dogs 7 years old and younger $150


Cat Package

Adoption Fee

Cats 8 years old and above $50
Cats 7 years old and younger $95

Adoption fee(s) for dogs and cats includes the following: Spay/Neuter if required, vet care at shelter as needed, most vaccinations, high quality diet while at shelter, worming, and flea treatment if necessary.

Hold Fees

A $25 hold fee can be placed for animals for approved adoptions only. The $25 hold fee will be applied toward the full adoption fee when the adopted pet is picked up. The hold fee will be forfeited if the animal is not picked up within 24 hours.

License Fees

Depending on where you reside, dog licenses are required in Island County. If you are located within the city limits of Oak Harbor, Coupeville, or Langley, please contact the city directly to purchase your dog license, as they administer their own programs.

Cat licenses are required for pet owners who reside in the City of Oak Harbor.

What Our Fees Provide

Included in the medical fee are health care costs. No animal leaves the shelter until altered. The requirement that an animal is altered before leaving a WAIF shelter is intended to reduce pet overpopulation. All WAIF animals are vaccinated, unless there is a medically necessary reason this shouldn’t be done. Vaccinations may include Rabies (when a vet is available to administer the vaccine), Distemper, Parvo Virus, Parainfluenza and Adeno 2 (Hepatitis). You will receive a health record at time of adoption so you can make note of and pet’s vaccinations and health care treatments while under WAIF’s care.

All cats and dogs are altered before leaving the shelter. When a cat is adopted, it must leave the shelter in a carrier. If you do not own a carrier, a cardboard carrier can be purchased at our facilities. All dogs must leave the shelter on a leash. If you do not own a leash, the shelter has them available for purchase.

Microchipped: All animals are microchipped prior to adoption using 911PetChip microchips. New adopters are responsible for registering their microchipped pets with their current contact information. Microchips are a good back-up plan for identifying lost pets as all pets should have collars with ID tags as well.

If you are planning to adopt a WAIF dog, and you already have dogs within your household, please be advised that before any adoption is finalized your dogs must be introduced to the WAIF dog at the shelter. This allows all dogs involved a chance to interact with each other to ensure a good fit in the home.

After the adoption, WAIF recommends that you make an appointment with your local veterinarian for a general health check of your pet. If your pet becomes ill or a medical condition is diagnosed, you can choose to treat the pet or return it to the shelter. We will provide a refund if the requirements are met. If, for any other reason, the pet does not work out with your family, you can return it within fourteen days for a refund. We refund all fees.

We strongly recommend obedience training for all dogs and puppies. Obedience training will establish a foundation for your pet to become a well-behaved member of your family. One of the most important elements of responsible pet ownership is socializing your pet with people and other animals. There are countless web sites, videos and books to assist you in training and socialization.

Again, thank you for your interest in WAIF and our animals. We want your experience with our organization to be a positive one. Feel free to contact our offices if you have any questions or concerns at (360) 678-8901.