Adoption Process


By the time of the adoption, every attempt has been made to assess the temperament and behavior of the dogs, and they will be as socialized as possible. Our foster homes work with our dogs on things like housetraining, grooming issues, and some basic obedience. This does not mean that the dogs will come with obedience titles. You will have to continue working with them on any areas that they may need help with. You may experience behaviors that did not happen in the foster home and have to realize that dogs do react differently in a different environment. We are available after adoption to offer suggestions or recommendations to help you. We are honest with adopters and provide them with all available information. Our ultimate objective is to see these formerly unfortunate Cocker Spaniels placed into safe, secure homes, where they will be loved and accepted as family members for the rest of their lives.

We do not encourage adoptions to families with young children. We are very concerned about the well being of your children as well as that of our dogs. We realize that each case is different and our adopting dogs to families with children 10 years of age or older will be based not only on the children's age but their exposure and experience with the Cocker Spaniel and other dog breeds. Sorry but we will not place a dog in a family with a child under 10 years of age, unless there is already a dog living in that home.

ADOPTION FEE: The fee is based on the age of the dog.

We do incur considerable expense for every Cocker we rescue. This cost includes shelter fees, spaying or neutering, vaccinations, heartworm testing, medications, grooming, quality food and transportation expenses which include intaking, vetting and placing the dogs in their new homes. We also have other expenses such as advertising, event costs, and special treatment and surgeries. We require a fee for every adoption to cover some of these expenses. However, adoption fees are not based on how much the dog has cost the rescue. Donations are accepted and very much appreciated.

Under 1 year old - $300.00

1-6 years old - $250.00

7-9 years old - $200.00

10 years and older - $125.00


1. Potential adopters fill out an Adoption Application providing information on the type of dog they're looking for along with veterinarian, groomer and personal references. We use this information to find the best match for your family from the available Cocker Spaniels. There is a non refundable $10 Adoption Application Processing Fee and your application can not be processed until after the fee has been received. Please be advised that filling out an application does not guarantee an adoption.

2. References provided by you are checked. The length of time this takes varies on how fast we are able to actually get through to talk to your references or how fast your references return phone calls left on answering machines. Please alert your references that theyíll be receiving a call and to please call back promptly.

3. If your application is approved, you'll be notified by email unless you don't have web access. In that case you will receive a phone call.

4. After you've been approved for adoption and a match is made, the foster parent for that dog will contact you to provide you with more specific information or update information on that dog and answer any questions you may have on that dog.

The majority of our adopters never meet the dog until the day of the placement visit. These have been some of our most successful placements. The adopter selects the dog from the website based on it's bio. Then after extensive discussion with the foster parents a dog is decided upon. No one knows the dog better than the foster parent. They have seen and lived with the dog in a natural situation. After communicating, the foster parent may decide that the dog will not work in that particular home. The adopter may also decide that dog is not the dog for them.

If you feel you MUST meet the dog prior to the placement visit we do hold a number of Meet and Greet type of Events in different cities in Wisconsin and Northern Illinois. Check our Scheduled Events Page to see where we will be. Note the following items.

  • Attending events like this can be very stressful for some of the dogs and the dogs may exhibit some behaviors that are not normal for them due to them being totally overwhelmed and fearful in this situation.

  • Please understand that our dogs are in individual foster homes in a number of different cities in both Wisconsin and Illinois. We are an organization consisting of volunteers. Itís just not possible for us to have every dog currently in foster care at every event that we hold. Sometimes we are also limited to the number of dogs and volunteers that we can have at an Event.

  • Please also understand that we just do not have either the time or the funds that would be required to transport several different dogs to meet you in your home. If you desire to meet a dog or several dogs prior to adoption, it will be necessary for YOU to travel to a Meet and Greet Event that the dog or dogs will be attending. Depending on where the dogs are being fostered, it may not be the same event Ė their foster parent will best be able to provide you with that information.

  • Please understand that the dog will remain Available for Adoption and that someone else may be approved to adopt that dog in the meantime.

  • Our foster families go above and beyond with our fosters and we greatly appreciate all they do. Our Foster Families have families of their own, their own pets, work full time jobs and have other commitments in addition to the commitment they make to us by fostering. Therefore, we do NOT allow home visits with any dog in itís foster home.

  • We do NOT do trial placements as it's just too hard on the dogs.

  • 5. When a dog is decided on between the parties there will be a Home Placement Visit where a volunteer comes to your home with the Cocker to answer any general questions you may have and allow you to spend some time with the dog to make sure the relationship is a longlasting one. While waiting for your home visit, it would be very helpful and is important that you review the information on our Help for New Arrival page. The purpose of the Home Placement Visit is to ensure that things you represented in your application are true and that the dog will be provided with a safe, loving environment. If things go well and both you and the dog are comfortable with each other, the volunteer will go over some of the paperwork in the dog's folder with you. If we feel that the home visit went well, but you refuse the dog, we will not bring a second dog.

    6. We'll ask you to read through and sign two copies of the Adoption Agreement -- you keep one for your records and the volunteer takes the other for ours. The Adoption Agreement will include all that dog's vaccination information. It is extremly important that you keep that document and make a copy of it to take to your vet, so he/she has need to know information about your new companion. The volunteer will collect your adoption fee and will leave when the dog is comfortable. You'll have your new companion!

    7. After the adoption, you'll receive your dog's rabies certificate and information as to how to transfer the microchip to include your information via postal mail. You can register the chip by completing the enclosed form and submitting it with the fee to the addresses provided within OR you can register the chip online paying the fee with a credit card. Website address for doing that also provided within the information that you will receive. It is very important that you take the few minutes to do that and do it as soon as possible. Having the dog microchipped is of no benefit, if you do not have the chip registered in your name with your contact information.

    Volunteers are available after the adoption via email or phone to answer any questions you may have. It is slso extremely important that you contact the dog's foster parent immediately with any concerns, problems or questions encountered during the dog's adjustment period so that we can try to resolve them and help you. We are also available to try to help in the future.

    We do get very attached to the dogs that we foster and sincerely appreciate hearing from you occasionally to let us know how the dog is doing.


    In order to help cover expenses involved in processing applications, it has been necessary for us to implement an Adoption Application Processing Fee. This fee will be $10 and is non refundable. Your application can not be processed until we have received your fee. You can pay with Pay Pal, just click on the button below.

    OR you can mail your fee to :

    Make Checks Payable to Shorewood Cocker Rescue and place Application Fee in the memo part of your check

    Donna Pfingsten
    2106 Blackbridge Road
    Janesville, WI 53545

    Please complete and submit the online application even if you use postal mail to pay the fee.

    Thank You so Much for Considering a Rescue Dog!