Adoption Process


So you wanna adopt your new best friend?

Spark Rescue will consider adoptive families in Santa Barbara County, Ventura County, San Luis Obispo County, and Monterey County only. This is simply due to logistics. Our goal is to make the best rescue match taking into consideration the dog's or cat's background and your family's needs. Every pet is different: personality, temperament, energy, comfort with kids and other animals, medical needs and more. We take all these factors into consideration when making a furever-home match. We are very careful about the placements we make. We do our best to match the right animal with the right adoptive home, because we want this to be the pet's permanent home.

Please read the Adoption Guidelines before applying.
***Due to the large number of applications we receive and the time it takes to review and process them, a one-time $10 Application Fee, in the form of a donation to Spark Rescue (by PayPal or credit card), will be requested following the preliminary Adoption Application questions****

Adoption Guidelines

Adopting a Cat or Kitten
  • Prior to adoption, all household members should be present to meet the prospective new cat.
  • You must be at least 21 years of age to adopt.
  • We advise (as per Humane Society of Americas recommendation) that families with children under 10 years of age do not adopt puppies/ kittens under 6 months old. Young animals require careful handling and can easily be harmed accidentally. We will not adopt a puppy under 6 months of age or a kitten under 6 months of age to a family with children under 10 years of age.
  • We suggest that our kittens be adopted in pairs. If you’re interested in adopting one kitten (under 4 months old), it’s best to have a young, playful, friendly cat or someone in the family at home most of the day.
  • We advise that all of our adopted cats and kittens be indoor only. Indoor cats live longer and healthier, avoiding the dangers of disease and predators outdoors. At times, we’ll have cats that may be available for adoption as indoor/outdoor cats, based on their history and behavior.
  • Declawing is cruel and unnecessary and we advocate against declawing cats. At times, we will have previously declawed cats available for adoption.
  • To reduce pet overpopulation, we advocate that all animals living as pets be spayed or neutered. Spark will always spay or neuter our rescues prior to adoption if there are special circumstances they must be returned for altering.  The cost for the surgery is included in the adoption fee.
Adopting a Dog or Puppy
  • Prior to adoption, all household members (including any resident dogs) should be present to meet the prospective new dog.
  • You must be at least 21 years of age to adopt.
  • We require families with children under 10 years of age to not adopt puppies under 6 months of age. Puppies require a lot of attention, training and careful handling.
  • All adopted dogs should be housed primarily indoors and not be kept as outside or guard dogs.
  • To reduce pet overpopulation, we advocate that all animals living as pets be spayed or neutered. Spark will always spay or neuter our rescues prior to adoption if there are special circumstances they must be returned for altering.  The cost for the surgery is included in the adoption fee.
  • We reserve the right to do property checks on homeowners or get landlord approval from applicants who are renting.
    We are unable to place dogs on hold or take deposits for animals.
  • Please understand that we try our best to match dog size, please do not fill out an application for a small dog if you have a dog that is a lot larger.




Please submit an online application by clicking the link that is located in the dog’s profile. Please read our Things to Know before filling out the application. (There is a $10 Application Fee.)

As part of the application process we ask that you provide proof of home ownership by uploading a copy of your property tax statement or if you rent your home a copy of your lease agreement showing that you have permission to have a dog. Please be prepared to submit the file in the form of a .doc file
You are also welcome to submit additional documentation as part of your application, such as photos of yourself or family with current or past pets, copies of vet/grooming bills, and other pet-related expenditures - anything that will help us know that you would make a great adopter. And as a timesaver you will have the opportunity to upload a video of your fence line and home, please include entire fenced area and all gates!



We will review your application upon receipt. If we have any questions or concerns, we will contact you for clarification.*

You will receive an email acknowledging that your application has been received and that it will be reviewed in the coming days. Please note that we often receive multiple highly qualified applicants for the same dog and are faced with the difficult task of selecting the home we feel is the best fit. This process can take a few days. Having to make such a decision is not something we take lightly, and we regret any disappointment such decisions might cause.



If you are selected as a good match for the dog or cat you applied for, you will receive an email providing you with the phone number of the animal's foster family so that you can arrange a time to meet.

We ask that you bring all persons who live in your home, including all children and dogs to determine if this is a good match for everyone.



Once approved to adopt, you will receive the foster’s information and set up a meeting with the dog either in your or the foster’s home. You will be required to present all household members as well as all dogs in the home, so we can be sure it’s a good match.

If the meeting goes well and you wish to proceed with the adoption, let Spark Rescue know via email. The Adoption Coordinator will then verify and approve all details of the adoption, including arranging a home visit (or reviewing submitted photos/video) for dogs, to assure that your property and home is safe and secure for the animal you would like to adopt. Once this is done, an Adoption Contract will be sent to you via email. Please let us know if you are no longer interested in the animal so that we may move on to the applicant.



If both you and the Foster think it’s a good match, we will email you the contract. (Please inquire if you are traveling a long distance).

You will need to pay the adoption fee for the amount which appears on the contract. The adoption fee can be paid either by Venmo or by check made out to Spark Rescue. You will also need to complete the adoption contract. You may give the payment and contract to the foster when you pick up your new dog or cat. If you pay via Venmo, please present the receipt to the foster.

Please note that there may be other applicants. We place the animal based on best fit, not first come - first served. You will receive a medical report within 7-10 days.



Contact the foster and arrange to pick up your new family member! We ask that you bring a leash, collar or a carrier for cats, and a personalized tag when you pick up your new dog. The foster will take a photo of your newly expanded family, which we will post on our FB page/Rescue website. For cats that are housed at Petco, you will pick up your new feline friend directly from Petco.

Additional Information

We will not discuss adoption details regarding any particular Animal if you have not yet applied to adopt.

Spark Rescue Santa Barbara is a 100% volunteer, non-profit organization. We are foster-based only and do not have a shelter.

Adoption fees range from $125 - $850, based on the age and health of each individual animal. These fees help to cover transport, medical care and essentials for the animals as we do not receive government funding.

​*Unfortunately, because of extremely limited volunteer time, we are only able to respond if you have been selected to continue the process. If you do not receive a follow-up email from us within 72 hours, you have not been selected. Please do not send follow-up emails inquiring on the status of your application. After adoption you will receive a medical report within 7-10 days.

Spark Rescue

Spark Rescue Santa Barbara is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) non-profit charity animal rescue organization, founded in February 2014, in Santa Barbara, CA, by Susan Park.

We Provide:
  • Rescue of cats & dogs from kill shelters and from the streets of Southern California
  • Foster homes to provide our rescues with a loving temporary home.
  • Adoption of rescued pets to qualified homes that have been properly screened and counseled by our Adoption Coordinator.
  • Rehoming of pets that are surrendered by owners who can no longer care for them.
Our Mission

Our Mission is to bring adoptable homeless pets that have been abused, abandoned and overbred into our program for social rehabilitation and emotional recovery and re-home them to permanent, loving homes. We hope to educate the public to help end euthanasia in Santa Barbara and Southern California through spaying and neutering and by preventing backyard breeding.

Our Goal

Our Goal is to acquire land and have the ability to rescue and house as many animals as possible. We would like to offer a sanctuary where the animals will be free to roam and socialize, but still be in a family environment. We want a place where potential adopters can come visit our rescues and where volunteers can come together and give the rescues as much love and attention as possible.

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