Thinking of Surrendering Your Pet?


We understand that making the decision to surrender a pet is a difficult one. Please read through the following information prior to bringing your animal to the shelter.

The main focus of Santa Barbara County Animal Services is handling stray animals. Keeping these animals safe and getting them off of the streets protects public safety in our communities. As a result, our shelters are often at capacity. We ask all owners who can no longer keep their animal to explore other options prior to surrendering an animal to the shelter by taking a look at our Solutions Checklist below!

Solutions Checklist!

  • Have you tried finding your pet a new home on your own?
  • Have you checked with family/friends/neighbors/co-workers to see if they can take your pet?
  • Are you struggling with training issues? Have you contacted Santa Barbara Humane? Email or call 805-964-4777
  • Have you tried re-homing your pet using the Adopt-A-Pet portal?
  • Have you listed your pet on ?
  • Have you tried temporarily boarding as a temporary solution? Please email Santa Barbara Humane, with your request and they will respond with help!
  • Have you talked with your doctor about obtaining a prescription for an "Emotional Support Animal" that will allow you to keep a pet even if a landlord/property manager directs you otherwise?
  • Have you tried setting up a GoFundMe to raise funds for a vet procedure or pet deposit?
  • Have you contacted " Dogs on Deployment " regarding the safe keeping of your pet while you're on active duty?
  • If you are looking at surrendering your pet due to medical concerns, please consult with a veterinarian. We understand the cost of medical care can be frightening but there are many programs aimed at keeping pets and their families together while ensuring the pet stays healthy.  If veterinary care is the concern please contact C.A.R.E. 4 Paws, Santa Barbara Humane, or ask your veterinarian about Care Credit  options.  Many of these organizations may be able to assist you which we hope will allow your pet to stay in your home. 
  • If you are looking at surrendering your pet due to landlord concerns or moving please remember that your pet is a part of your family and would be happiest with you. Often times obtaining renters insurance will help property owners feel more at ease with allowing an animal. We suggest you contact an insurance company prior to giving up hope.
  • Moving into housing that doesn't accept animals is stressful and a common occurrence.  Please click here for pet friendly housing in Santa Barbara County.
  • Have you attended one of our monthly low-cost Rabies vaccination clinics? Making sure your pet is up-to-date on their shots will make your pet more adoptable.

Once you have exhausted all options, your local Santa Barbara County Animal Services Shelter will serve as your last resort. There is a relinquishment fee for surrendering your animal. Although we do the best we can with all animals that enter our facilities we cannot guarantee adoption for owner surrendered animals.  Please fill out an appointment request or have questions below. Due to COVID-19 we are taking Owner Surrenders by appointment.