Adoption Policies

Please read our Adoption Policies before you submit an application. They cover important requirements for adopting, adoption procedures, the adoption fee, and our application and contract documents.

Adoptive Home Requirements

We require our adopters to be at least 21 years of age and in a stable home environment. Occasionally, we get applications from children and teens on behalf of their families. We realize that kids love dogs, but having a dog is a decision for the entire family, and we need to hear from the parents. Adults in the prospective adopting family are the people who need to apply.

All dogs need adequate vet care, and vet care can get expensive. Please consider this financial obligation carefully and make sure the good of the dog is your top priority.

We require a fenced yard for all puppies and most of our adult dogs. A well-socialized, leash-trained adult or senior Sheltie might do well in a condo/townhouse or apartment environment, where all outside activities take place on a leash. We will evaluate any potential exceptions on a case by case basis. We do not approve invisible/electric fences, dog runs, or tie out chains. For an explanation of why we disapprove of invisible fences, see this information on Invisible Fences.

If you have other pets, they must be spayed/neutered if you desire to adopt from us unless you have a valid medical reason. Your other pets must also be up to date on all vet care (shots and preventatives such as heartworm meds). We will confirm this with your vet before proceeding with your application.

All dogs adopted from RMCSR must wear ID tags at all times and may never be allowed off a leash unless they are in a secure area, such as a fenced back yard. Read more about why we require adopters to be safe (and not sorry!) with newly adopted dogs in the article Why Should My Dog Wear A Collar And Tag?

Collies and Shelties must be kept on regular heartworm preventative. The only heartworm medication we accept is Interceptor. The medication  Heartguard has proven toxic and even fatal to these breeds. See Collie and Sheltie Health Concerns for more important information about this topic.

If you cannot keep your dog, it must be returned to RMCSR. We do not adopt out dogs that will be given as gifts to others.

For more information, please see our Adoption Process.


If you are considering a puppy, we prefer an adoptive home with active family members who are up to the rigors and challenges of having a young dog, and who can devote the time it takes to raising and properly training a pup.

We give preference to someone who works at home or can be home part-time with the pup. A puppy needs a home where at least some family members are home a good portion of the day, for socializing and training the pup. Puppies require patience, gentle hands and lots of praise! The time you spend with your puppy will directly impact the adult dog he becomes. 

The perfect puppy home will be one with kids who are over the age of 8 and who understand only kindness toward animals, a parent who works from home or is at least a part-time ‘stay at home’ parent, and a boatload of love to give to a remarkable furry friend.

And finally, a securely fenced yard is a must for a puppy.

The Foster Program

We do not have a shelter, and so it is not possible to view all of our dogs at a central facility. RMCSR dogs are cared for in our foster homes. Interested adopters meet our dogs in their foster homes after we review the application. Our foster "parents" evaluate our dogs' temperaments and talk to potential adopters so we can place them in the best home possible. 

Some dogs may have issues from their prior lives. We advise adopters on any known issues prior to adoption. We do not place aggressive dogs or known biters. Rescue dogs have plenty of love, affection and gratitude to give, and you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you saved a dog!

The majority of our dogs find wonderful adopters in Colorado, but we have also adopted to folks in other states. We do not adopt outside of the U.S. If you live outside Colorado, we are willing to accommodate a long-distance adoption, but we will not ship any of our dogs. We require interested adopters to meet the our dogs in the homes where they are being fostered. We communicate thoroughly with potential adopters.

For more information, please see our Foster Process.