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FAQ Page

General Questions

Our address is 8303 Murray Ridge Road, Elyria OH 44035. 

Directions From I-90:

  • Take Interstate 90 to State Route 57
  • South on Route 57 to Route 113
  • West (right) on Route 113 to Murray Ridge Road
  • Turn left onto Murray Ridge Road
  • Cross the railroad tracks & Lowell Street

Directions From Ohio Turnpike:

  • Take the Turnpike to State Route 57
  • South on Route 57 to Route 113
  • West (right) on Route 113 to Murray Ridge Road
  • Turn left onto Murray Ridge Road
  • Cross the railroad tracks & Lowell Street

No Appointment required to adopt! Adoptions stop a half hour before closing.

Monday: CLOSED to the public for adoptions
Tuesday: 11am – 4:30pm
Wednesday: 11am – 4:30pm
Thursday: 11am – 4:30pm
Friday: 11am – 4:30pm
Saturday: 11am – 4:30pm
Sunday: 11am – 4:30pm

No appointment is necessary to adopt. Adoptions are available to walk ins. Our intake, clinic, and TNR departments d0 require appointments. 

When paying for a service or adoption we only accept cash or credit cards. 

When donating, we accept cash, card or check.

We do sell dog licenses for Lorain County residents on site at our facility. 

We are always accepting donations of gently used items including towels, blankets, sheets, and toys. We do accept open bags of food as long as the expiration date is clearly visible on the bag. 

To learn more about what type or donations we accept and how to donate go to:

As far as medication and syringe donations go, we CANNOT accept them. There is new legislation stating that we are unable to take donated medication or syringes. All medications must be taken to the Sheriff’s Department for disposal.

We are able to accept medical supplies such as wraps, gauze and empty pill bottles.  

We do offer dog training classes at our facility! Our dog trainer,  Don Hitchens, has twenty years of experience. Dog training classes are typically 6 weeks long and held in a group setting. For any questions about dog training and how to sign up, please email or call 440-322-4321 ext. 225.

We are always accepting new volunteers. In order to volunteer or learn more about what volunteering means, please come to our shelter to get an application. You can also call 440-322-4321 ext. 230 or email

We are always in need of fosters! If you are interested in becoming a foster go to:

If you have any questions to ask about fostering and what it entails, please send an email to or call 440-322-4321 ext. 228.

We accept volunteers that are 10 years old and up. For volunteers that are 10-15 years old we do require a parent or guardian to be present. 

Yes, we do allow people to complete community service hours here. Please fill out an application at the link below:

We do allow groups to come to the shelter and volunteer. In order to have your group visit and volunteer please email

Adoption Questions

If you are interested in an animal you see online, the best way to adopt from us is to come to our shelter. We are open for walk-in visitors and have an application that can be filled out in person. Adoptions are done “same day” and the process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour depending on how busy it is. 

Dogs:                                                             Cats: 

Puppy (less than 7 months) $250            Kitten (less than a year): $60

Adult (7 months to 7 years) $125            Adult (one year or older): $25

Adult (less than 20lbs) $150                    Small Animal:

Senior (older than 7 years) $50               Rabbits $15  

                                                                      Guinea Pig/Hamster $10

Yes, however you still need to come to the shelter to meet the animal. We cannot guarantee the animal will still be available by the time you arrive at our shelter because our adoptions are done on a first-come first-serve basis. 

We have potential adopters fill out an adoption application, which needs to be approved prior to adopting. This approval process is done on site and takes about 10 minutes. 

Owning your home vs. renting: We do not deny applications if you rent, however we will ask for verification of the pet policy. This can be done by contacting the landlord or verified with a copy of the lease. 

Other pets: We do require dog-to-dog meets prior to approving the application if you have a resident dog. Meet and greets are not required with puppies, unless you wish to do so. Vaccinations should be current on your resident animal. This is a precaution to keep your animal safe to any possible exposure from our newly vaccinated adoptable animals. 

At the time of adoption, staff will ask for your ID and form of payment. 

Dogs: If you are adopting a dog or puppy, you will need to bring a collar and leash. If you do not have a collar or leash with you, you can purchase a $2 (+tax) slip lead or a collar and leash from our gift shop at the time of adoption. All adult dogs must be leashed leaving our shelter.

Cats & Small Animals: If you are adopting a cat, kitten or small animal, you will need to bring a carrier with you. If you do not have a carrier, you can purchase on eat the time of adoption for $5 (+tax). All cats, kittens and small animals must leave in an appropriate animal carrier.

We do not “hold” any of our adoptable animals. Also, we do not accept payments/deposits in advance for adoptable animals. The only exception to “holding” an animal would be if the foster parent  was adopting, or someone was adopting through the foster. We can place a temporary hold an adult dog if a meet and greet is required, until the end of the day or up until 24 hours of the initial visit. We do not place holds on puppies, cats, kittens or small animals.

Holds can be placed on a case by case basis based on management discretion.

Adoptions are done on a first-come first-serve basis to qualified adopters. Qualified adopters are those that have visited the shelter and the application has been approved. If you are interested in a puppy you see posted online, come to our shelter to meet the puppy. Our normal adoption process is then put into place. 

If you are interested in an adult dog, we do require you to bring any resident dog(s) in for a meet and greet. If you have a resident cat, we do NOT facilitate meet and greets between cats or dogs here at the shelter. We do not require meet and greets for puppies.

The adoption fee includes the animal you are adopting. All of our adoptable animals go home spayed or neutered, up to date on their first set of booster shots, microchipped (if old enough), given flea/tick prevention and given a dose of de-wormer. You will receive a folder with all of this information to go home with at the time of adoption.

All of our adoptable animals are microchipped, as long as they are old enough. Microchips are not a way to “track” your adopted animal, but is a way to identify you as the owner of the animal. At the time of adoption, your information will be pre-registered to the microchip. You will have to make an account (free and lifetime) with 24 Hour Petwatch, our microchip provider. 

Yes we do. 

FIV+: We do adopt out FIV positive cats, as they can live normal healthy lives. Adopters should know that these cats need routine vaccines and vet care (every year). FIV positive cats can go home with other cats. 

FELV+: We do adopt out FELV+ cats. FELV+ can have a shorter lifespan. They cannot go home with other cats. 

A lot of our animals come from unknown backgrounds whether that be as strays, from other shelters or owner surrenders. This means we do not always have the answer to whether or not they are good with dogs, cats and/or children. We recommend that you bring all children living in the home to meet your potential new family member. If we have information on if the animal is good with other animals or children, we make sure it is included in their online bio. If we do not have that information, we have staff that are able to guide you to the best fit.

Post Adoption Support Questions

Per the contract that is signed at the time of adoption, we always take our animals back if it is not working out. There is no time restraint on this policy. We do not refund the adoption fee, but can offer an exchange of credit for another adoption. 

Dogs: The described symptoms typically are diagnosed as kennel cough. Just as human colds may be caused by many different viruses, kennel cough itself can have multiple causes. Dogs “catch” kennel cough when they inhale bacteria or virus particles into their respiratory tract. Kennel cough is contagious. If you think your dog might have the condition, you should keep them away from other animals and contact your veterinarian. Although most cases of kennel cough will resolve without treatment, medications may speed recovery or minimize symptoms during the course of infection. These include antibiotics that target Bordetella bacteria and cough medicines. Most dogs with kennel cough recover completely within three weeks, though it can take up to six weeks in older dogs or those with other medical conditions.


Cats: The described symptoms are typically diagnosed as Feline Upper Respiratory Infection. Feline upper respiratory infection is a common illness in cats. It’s similar to a cold, but it can be much more serious. It’s caused by different viruses or bacteria, and it targets the upper airway — the nose, throat, and sinuses — rather than the lungs. Upper respiratory infections are common for cats that live in crowded conditions, like shelters or breeding facilities. Your veterinarian will tell you what the best course of treatment is for your cat. This may include medications, isolation, rest, fluids from an IV, and nutritional support. 


If you have any medical concerns after adopting your animal, do not hesitate to reach out to our staff. We are still there for you after the adoption and never knowingly adopt out a sick/injured animal. We will work with you to assess the animal and get it any treatment it might need. You can call us at 440-506-2775 during the hours of 8:30am-4:30pm.

Vomiting or diarrhea on its own can be signs of stress, or anxiousness especially after getting your newly adopted animal home. However, it is important to monitor your new animal and if any of these signs are happening at the same time to reach out. 

Dogs: Parvo is an infectious DNA virus that commonly causes severe illness in young and unvaccinated dogs. Although parvovirus is most common in puppies and adolescent dogs, it can affect adult or senior dogs, especially if they are unvaccinated. It is spread by contact with contaminated feces, but you don’t have to see solid feces for the virus to be present. It can live on the ground or on surfaces in kennels, on peoples’ hands, or on the clothing of people that have been contaminated. Dogs could also carry it on their fur or paws if they have come into contact with contaminated fecal material. A dog infected with canine parvovirus will start to show symptoms within three to seven days of infection. An infected puppy will often show lethargy as the first sign, and they may not want to eat. They will also often have a fever. As the virus progresses, your dog will begin to suffer from severe vomiting and diarrhea. Fecal ELISA tests (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) are the most common way of diagnosing a dog with parvovirus in a clinical setting. The test requires a fecal swab and takes about 10 minutes. While this test is accurate, a negative result does not necessarily rule out parvovirus in a symptomatic dog, as they may not be shedding the viral antigen at the time of testing. Further testing may be needed in these cases. Recovery from parvovirus varies case by case. Full recovery may take quite a while depending on the severity of the disease and the damage it has done. Dogs that can recover from infection are sick for five to 10 days after symptoms begin. 


Cats: Feline panleukopenia virus (FPV, pan-loo-ko-peeneea), also commonly referred to as feline distemper, is a highly contagious and life-threatening viral disease in the cat population. Feline distemper is actually a misnomer, as the virus is closely related to the canine parvovirus. Kittens between the ages of two to six months are at highest risk for developing severe disease symptoms, as well as pregnant cats and immune compromised cats. In adult cats, panleukopenia usually occurs in a mild form and may even go unnoticed. Fortunately, cats who survive this infection are immune to any further infection with this virus. Cats acquire this infection when they come into contact with infected blood, feces, urine or other bodily fluids. The virus can also be passed along by people who have not washed their hands appropriately or have not changed clothing between handling cats, or by materials such as bedding, food dishes or equipment that has been used for other cats. Affected cats will require immediate treatment, and often hospitalization. The first major goal of treatment is to restore body fluid levels and electrolyte balance. Specific treatment will depend on the severity of your cat’s illness, but it is likely to include in-hospital care for several days in an isolation room to prevent spreading it to other animals. Once your cat is home from the hospital, you will need to isolate her from other cats until all the symptoms have resolved and your veterinarian gives the okay. This could take up to 6 weeks. If your cat is treated promptly and effectively, she may recover fully. It may take a few weeks for your cat to feel completely back to normal. 


If you have any medical concerns after adopting your animal, do not hesitate to reach out to our staff. We are still there for you after the adoption and never knowingly adopt out a sick/injured animal. We will work with you to assess the animal and get it any treatment it might need. You can call us at 440-506-2775 during the hours of 8:30am-4:30pm.

The best way to prevent your newly adopted pet from licking the incision site is by purchasing a “cone” for them to wear. If you notice the licking has caused the incision site to be red and irritated please reach out to our staff at 440-322-4321.

Many of the animals adopted out of our facility go home only a few days after their spay/neuter surgery. Our spay/neuter surgeries are closed using a surgical grade glue. This glue can dissolve if saturated in any liquid whether it be from licking, weather or from a bath. This can cause the incision to open slightly, become infected and/or irritated. If you notice any of the above, please contact our staff at 440-322-4321. 

If you ever have any concerns about behavior issues, please contact our staff at 440-322-4321. We will do our best to put you in touch with a staff member that can offer the best possible advice/options to you going forward. 

This answer depends on when your new animal had its spay/neuter surgery. The animal you adopted cannot have a bath until 2 weeks (10-14 days) after its surgery. 

Intake/Medical Department Questions

In order to surrender an animal, you need to make an appointment. You can make an appointment by emailing 

After sending an email you will be prompted to answer questions about the animal and why you need to surrender. Please be patient with response time. 

First, please see below what we consider to be an emergency situation:

  • Homelessness
  • Unable to afford unexpected, emergency medical care
  • Eviction

Please call 440-506-2775 if you have an emergency surrender situation and need to speak to someone. Staff is only at the shelter during the hours of 8:30am-4:30pm to answer the phone. 

If you have a situation that is not listed above, but you believe is urgent, please give us a call.

We do take in stray cats as surrenders. You must make an appointment to surrender a stray cat to ensure that we have space. We only accept stray cats from Lorain County. 

We do not accept feral cat surrenders. A “feral” cat is one that cannot be easily handled, pet, or caught. These cats are unable to be adopted and therefore we cannot take them as surrenders. However we do have a TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return) program which will work with you to get them fixed and released so they can no longer reproduce. If you are interested in our TNR program, send an email to

We are equipped to take in dogs, cats and small animals. Small animals include, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, rats, ferrets and chinchillas. We do not have the resources to house any reptiles or fish adequately.

We do have a low cost spay and neuter program. We also offer additional vaccination services at the time of the spay/neuter surgery. In order to schedule an appointment or get pricing information, please email

We currently do not have a full time Veterinarian on staff. We also do not have a full service veterinary clinic. Therefore, we are unable to provide any other verterinary services at this time. 

If you found an injured or sick dog/cat please give our front desk a call at 440-322-4321. The ability for us to take the animal in is on a case by case basis. 

By law, any stray dogs need to be reported and taken to the Lorain County Dog Kennel. Their address is 301 Hadaway Street, Elyria, OH 44035.

You can reach them at 440-326-5995. 

Humane Department Questions

A Humane officer is any person designated by the humane society as a law enforcement officer and who qualifies to perform such duties under the laws of the Commonwealth. Humane officers have received training in compliance with OAC 109:2-15-02 using curriculum approved by the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission. Humane officers are appointed by the Lorain County Probate Court.

They DO: Investigate animal abuse/neglect

They DON’T: Pick up strays, file barking complaints, report to animal bites or help with wildlife concerns.

Our Humane Officers only service Lorain County.

It is a crime in Ohio to abuse or neglect pets (or “companion animals”) in a variety of ways, including:

  • torture, needless mutilation or killing, poisoning, or any other act of cruelty
  • not giving a pet wholesome food and potable water it needs
  • confining a pet without supplying it with enough good food and water, as well as shelter from the elements, if it is reasonable to expect that the animal would suffer as a result; and
  • deliberately doing anything that causes serious physical harm (including suffering from prolonged pain).

You can report abuse/neglect to our Humane Officers by emailing or by calling 440-322-4321 ext. 225.

Leave a detailed message and YOUR NAME AND PHONE NUMBER.

We must have proof to be able to remove the animal. If you can safely get a video of the abuse it would help the Officers.

Our Humane Officers are not able to respond to calls about outside cats. Different cities have different ordinances about outside cats. Please call your local police department if you have a concern about outside cats. 

For barking complaints and animal bites please call your local police station.

For concerns about wildlife, please reach out to your county wildlife center, or local nature preserve.

We never go to a report and tell the suspect who the complainant is – BUT – according to the Sunshine Law of Ohio, we must release all of the information on our report if the suspect writes, emails or comes to our building and formally requests a copy. If there is a reason that a name should be withheld (proven danger to the complainant) a judge may redact  a name and personal information from the report.  That being said, we may still need to speak with you for clarification of the complaint or directions to the property if we are unable to locate it.  Leaving at least a phone number for us to call you is very important.

If you have any questions, please email or call 440-322-4321

Friendship APL

Friendship APLWe are a private, independent, non-profit humane society founded in Elyria, Ohio. We proudly own and operate the largest animal shelter in Lorain County.

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