We like to use an adoption contract as an extra layer of security. Screening and including a rehoming fee are still your most important measures, but a contract can help maintain the level of care the animal receives when placed in a new home.
This contract was designed by a friend of Forgotten Felines who’s a paralegal. It doesn’t need to be notarized, but you do need a court order if you ever have to confiscate an animal.
Because this contract was intended for cat adoptions, I’ve removed any areas that read “cat” for public use on any animal. Please fill in what species you’re rehoming where it says: “Regarding the _____ described as follows:”. Also remember to list your rehoming fee after the first clause.
If you’re unable to have the animal returned to you, please cross out the areas stating that. If it’s your request to have the adopter spay/neuter the animal, it’s your responsibility to check in after 60 days. Ask the adopter where the animal was spayed/neutered and call that vet’s office or clinic directly. If this clause has been breached, allow the adopter an additional 30 days to have this done. If it still hasn’t been taken care of, you have the right to confiscate the animal.
As the caregiver, it’s your choice which parts of the contract must be followed. Have your adopter initial only the areas you feel are relevant. After the contract has been signed, do NOT leave the adopter with this. This is your copy and should the adopters want their own, you’ll have to make a photocopy and mail it to them.
You may also consider making a third copy to mail to their vet. In doing so, please include a cover letter briefly explaining who you are with your contact info. Also include a brief description of the animal and the adopters name. Ask the vet’s office to keep your information and the contract on file, alerting you if the contract has been breached.
Our adoption contract is available here for anyone to print. Click on the contract below to get a full-page view, then right click from there to save. On this page, you’ll be able to toggle back and forth from small to huge, but that’s because it’s saved at a high resolution (300 dpi) so the page is crisp when printed and not blurred.