+ Where are you located?

We are a foster-based rescue, which means we do not have a shelter location. Rather, we have a network of foster homes and dogs who can be seen by approved adopters by appointment.

+ What is the adoption process?

The first step is to fill out an application. More information about our process and fees is here.

+ Where are the dogs rescued from?

We pull all of our dogs from an overcrowded shelter in the northwest corner of Alabama. All of our dogs have been tested for temperament. We look for friendly and adoptable dogs of all colors, all breeds and all energy levels. They are transported to Massachusetts and have been in quarantine for 48 hours (per MA state law) before being released to Brown Dog.

+ When will you be posting new dogs?

We post newly rescued dogs every 2-3 weeks. Dogs are posted on our website 2 days before being crossposted on PetFinder. We receive transports of dogs and have adoption events every 2-3 weeks. At the end of each dog's adoption profile is the date on which they are available to meet.

+ What are adoption events like?

Every few weeks, we have adoption events for approved adopters to meet a dog by appointment. We set up one appointment per dog with an approved applicant and assign a volunteer adoption coordinator to work with you. You're able to walk the dog, see them on/off leash and interact with them to help you decide if you would like to adopt. If the adoption coordinator and you feel like it is a good fit, you are able to adopt that day.

+ Can I meet several dogs at an adoption event?

Sometimes. We typically set up one appointment with an approved adopter per dog (to avoid an awkward, competitive atmosphere). Most of the time, each dog has a meeting scheduled. Potential adopters can spend as much time as they wish with the dog before making a decision. If any dogs are not spoken for, adopters can meet them also.

+ After I meet a dog can I sleep on it or put a deposit down and have the dog put on a hold?

We prioritize adopters who are ready to adopt the same day as a potential adoption meeting. The dogs have already been through so much upheaval. We try to avoid having to make a dog transition to another temporary location (a foster home) if possible. We cannot hold a dog for any period of time. If you meet a dog and want to adopt but are not prepared at that time, another adopter may come forward and adopt the dog.

+ What is different about you versus other rescues?

We are a small but mighty, family-run rescue with no physical shelter. We strive to strike a balance between helping as many dogs as possible without sacrificing the quality of our adoptions. We also care about the dogs after they leave our care and we check in via email at 3 days, 3 weeks and 3 months for updates and to answer any questions or concerns. Plus, over a third of the dogs we help have intensive medical needs (amputations, leg surgery, treatment for heartworm, parvovirus or mange, etc.) We commit to those who are easily overlooked because we know they deserve life-saving medical care and loving forever homes too.

+ What is a Brown Dog?

The original Brown Dog is the Covino family's dog, Libby, who may not fall into a category of a certain breed, but who has a lovely brown coat—thus garnering the title of a brown dog.

+ Do you have any dogs who would make good emotional support animals?

Usually not. We seldom have dogs who are low maintenance and can easily adapt to new situations after a lot of transitions. Most of our dogs are in need of supportive and patient people to see them through at least the first 30 days of adjusting to a home and creating a new routine. Adopting a dog often includes a lot of love and companionship but also includes cleaning up accidents, resolving new and unwanted behaviors, training, socialization, exercise, and general disruption to schedules and routines — all of which can be anxiety-inducing. We ask that adopters have stable housing, financials, and be emotionally stable enough to provide for and commit to a dog who will be dependent on them every day for years to come.

+ Is the dog I am interested in house-trained?

It is best to set expectations low and assume that a dog is not housetrained. A dog who is house-trained in one location may not be house-trained in a different location, because the behavior is not generalized. It is not at all uncommon for dogs to be "outdoor dogs" in the south. So, please be patient and compassionate as your dog settles in and learns your expectations. Most puppies will need more time and patience to learn house-training.

+ Will the dog I am interested in need to be de-wormed again?

It is not uncommon for dogs, and especially puppies, to need to be de-wormed once more after adoption. Each Brown Dog has been de-wormed at least twice but some intestinal parasites may still be present. This is not unusual, and can be easily treated.

+ What is the backstory of the dog I am interested in?

Every dog's story is not known but it is common for dogs to be found on the side of the road, dumped inside the shelter fence, or surrendered without reason. We also rescue dogs in need of intensive medical care after they have been hit by a car, are heartworm positive, or are in need of other medical attention. We open our hearts to these animals regardless of their stories and try to make their future much brighter than their past. To learn more about your dog's time with Brown Dog visit our A Dog's Journey page!

+ What breed is the do I am interested in?

The breeds our are dogs are labled with are based on physical appearance alone. Please keep an open mind when adopting because good temperaments can be found in all breeds. It is not uncommon that mixed breed dogs have a bully breed in their mix.

+ How big will the puppy I am interested be when full grown?

There are online growth calculators that may help guestimate the adult weight of your puppy. But because in most cases the parentage is unknown we can only truly guess. A general rule of thumb is that the dog will double in weight from 4 months old.

+ What is the return policy?

While adoptions are life-long commitments, if the adoption is unsuccessful and the animal is returned within 7 days of adoption, we will refund the adoption fee minus $75.

Please note: returning a dog beyond the initial one week period will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and is at the discretion of the organization. As we are entirely foster based, we may not have immediate placement for a dog, and the circumstances regarding the nature of the surrender will also need to be evaluated. We do our best to be a resource to our adopters and to always have the best interests of the dog in mind. We encourage our adopters to reach out to us via email at any time with questions, concerns, or for a training referral.

If you have any other questions please reach out to us at browndogcoalitionandrescue@gmail.com