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For Potential Adopters

We do our best to anticipate most of your questions.  The following information  will address the details of the adoption process, the cost, the time it takes for application approval, and scheduling appointments.

cincinnati-lab-rescue-20Adoption Basics:


If you are interested in adopting one of our wonderful Labradors, please fill out our Adoption Application, Application approval can take up to two weeks. Approved applications remain active for one year.  Once your application is approved, you will schedule an adoption appointment.  Our adoption fee is $375.

cincinnati-lab-rescue-21Adoption Process:


For details on our adoption process see the flow diagram below. It covers from the moment you decide to adopt until you bring your new furry family member home. For detailed descriptions of each step, tap or click on the numbers. Additional information is available in our Adoption FAQ’s,

cincinnati-lab-rescue-20Dog Updates and Questions:


We update our Available Labs frequently, so you can trust that the  information is current.

We are happy to address specific questions about a dog once  an application has been submitted and approved.  In order to address the majority of your questions, we recommend you review our Adoption FAQ’s,

  • Are all the humans in the home ready for a new dog?
  • Are all of the pets in the home ready for a new dog? (health/age/temperament)
  • Are you propared for the cost of food, medical care, and supplies?
  • Do you have any upcoming major life changes? (move, etc.)
  • If you rent, does your lease/landlord allow pets, and are there any restrictions?
  • Give your permission to release your records to CLR
  • Confirm that your vet’s records match your expectations (e.g., spay/neuter, vaccination dates, heartworm prevention)
  • If you don’t currently have a vet, now is the time to find one!
  • All dogs and cats in the home will need to be current on the rabies vaccine
  • All dogs in the home will need to be current on distemper
  • All dogs in the home will need to be current on bordetella (optional vaccine, but required where we do adoptions, and we require the dogs in the home to be present for adoptions)
  • To adopt one of our wonderful Labradors, please complete your application
  • Please note that our applications are not for a specific dog, but rather to adopt from CLR in general. We cannout guarantee that the dog you are interested in will be available by the time your application is approved (but there are always more dogs!)
  • Please provide complete answers
  • After you submit, you should be taken to a success page, and receive an email confirmation
  • If you rent, and you have a lease or pet addendum that shows that you are allowed to have a dog and any restrictions (e.g., breed, weight) you will be able to submit that via email
  • CLR’s volunteers will review your application, and contact your vet and landlord (if applicable)
  • We may have some follow-up questions for you
  • When our checks are complete, your application will go to our director for final review
  • CLR communicates primarily by email
  • Check you SPAM folder and/or change your settings if needed to avoid missing emails
  • During the application process, watch for emails from
  • For final review, approval, appointments, and dog questions, watch for emails from
  • It does take time (up to 2 weeks) for for us to review your application and make any necessary follow-ups
  • You can help speed up the process by contacting your vet, sending your lease information, and responding quickly to any questions
  • When your application is approved, you will receive an email from with next steps
  • Your approval email may contain some conditions for you to fulfill prior to adoption. Typically these conditions will be discussed with your in advance during the review process
  • Approved applications remain active for 1 year
  • After you are approved, please go to the Available Dogs to identify dogs that you would like to meet.
  • We update the listings for our available labs regularly, so you can be sure the information is current
  • Please email us at if you have specific questions about a dog that’s not addressed on our site
  • Email with the names of the dog(s) that you would like to meet, and your availability
  • Adoptions are typically held on Saturdays, with the first appointment at 9:30am and the last at 12:30pm
  • CLR will evaluate your compatability with the dog(s) you have selected using information from your application
  • We may have additional questions for you, or additional information about the dog(s)
  • Please note, some dogs may already have a scheduled appointment with another approved adopter
  • If so, we will note your interest in case the dog is not adopted.
  • We may contact you, but it’s best to keep an eye on our website to see if the dog was adopted, and request another appointment if he or she is still available
  • When asking for an appointment, please let us know what times you are available
  • We will email you to offer you a time slot
  • You must reply to that email to confirm the appointment
  • Once you confirm, you will receive a confirmation email with additional instructions, including where you will be meeting the dog
  • If you do not receive a confirmation email, you do not have an appointment
  • Our goal is to make the best possible match, which is why we require all family members and dogs living in the home to be present at the adoption appointment.
  • Please arrive on time, or email us in advance if you are running late
  • Enter the facility, go to the daycare area, and let whoever greets you know that you are there for an adoption
  • The volunteer who will be running your appointment will introduce themselves and then introduce you to the dog(s).
  • You will have the opporunity to interact with the dog and ask questions
  • If the dog is in foster, the dog’s foster parent(s) will typically be present to provide additional insight
  • You will be able to take the dog for a walk
  • If you have dogs, we will conduct a dog introduction, and then allow the dogs to interact
  • Please note that while you are evaluating the dog, the CLR volunteer will also be evaluating the match
  • The CLR volunteer will let you know if there are any concerns with the match
  • Otherwise, the decision to adopt is yours
  • If you need some time to have a private discussion before making your decision, please let us know
  • Once you decide to adopt, there is some documentation to complete
  • You will receive a copy of the dog’s medical record, which we will review with you
  • We will share an information sheet with you that will include general guidelines and additional information
  • We will review the adoption contract with you, which you will need to sign
  • We will accept your payment (credit/debit card, check, or cash). Adult dogs are $325 and puppies are $375.
  • Adoption fee covers basic vetting, including all vaccinations, registered microchip, and spay/neuter. 100% of our funds go directly to the care of our dogs.
  • We will confirm your contact information for registering the dog’s microchip
  • If the dog is not yet fixed (typically only puppies under 6 months), we will complete a spay/neuter agreement with you (spay/neuter is covered by your adoption fee if conducted at our partner vet)
  • You should expect to take your new dog home the same day
  • Please bring a leash, and have dog equipment and supplies (bowls, crate, food, toys, etc.) ready at home
  • Your new dog will likely need some time to adjust to you and your home
  • Please keep in touch and let us know how things are going (especially if you have problems!)

Dear Future Family,

We want to let you know that we are so happy you chose to adopt us.  We know it won’t always be easy, especially at first.  Some of us had great homes and favorite napping spots, but were given away by our families for different reasons.  Some of us had families who never taught us how to trust, love, and feel safe.   We ended up in shelters where we were confused and afraid.  We weren’t used to all that noise and missed laying in the warm sun.  We might seem aloof or distant when we come home with you for the first time.  We might even be upset, pacing, barking and panting to try and calm ourselves.  We made it to rescue because someone could see we still had a lot of love to give.  They recognized our gentle, playful and loving soul, deserving of a second chance.  We promise that with time, patience, guidance, and love, we will be whole again – happy, loyal, and most of all, grateful to have a family that won’t give up on us!  


We love you so much and will give you sloppy kisses forever,       

Your New Rescue Companion