Aussie Rescue San Diego


At ARSD, the needs of our dogs always come first. Read below to learn more about our dogs and the process of adopting them into your family as beloved companions!

Why an Aussie? About the Breed:

Australian Shepherds and other herding breeds were bred to be working dogs! They are highly intelligent, active dogs, and can make the perfect trainable partner to bond with. With their intense drive and intellect, Aussies can exhibit destructive / reactive behaviors if they do not have appropriate channels for their energy. In the right environment with a dedicated, savvy owner, you will find these dogs to be wonderful companions. They can be your best friend who will enjoy spending quality time with you. Our experienced staff can help provide you with tools to build a wonderful partnership!

Where do you get your adoptable dogs?

We work with San Diego County Shelters as well as owners who are looking to rehome their dogs. Many of our dogs come from owners who are not able to meet the needs of this breed and then must find a new home for their much-loved pet. These dogs are often in need of behavior modification and many need medical care.

What type of medical care is provided prior to adoption?

Most of the dogs in our program are altered (spay/neuter) before adoption. Exceptions would be if the dog is too young or not medically fit to be altered at the time of adoption in which case, future arrangements are made.  Our volunteer staff ensure all dogs are up to date on vaccines and healthy! Any known medical issues will be disclosed and discussed with potential adopters and records are given to adopters.

Are there training requirements in the adoption contract?

All dogs under 5 years of age are required to be enrolled in a positive reinforcement training group class chosen by the adopter. We believe that correction and punishment-based training is harmful to dogs and often leads to more behavioral issues down the road. Positive reinforcement training has been proven to yield better quality behaviors and longer lasting retention of these learned behaviors.

How long does the adoption process take?

On average, the adoption process takes about 7 days or less from application to adoption. While we work diligently to save as many dogs as possible, we must also ensure that our dogs are going to homes which are a good fit for their needs. All ARSD dogs reside in a foster home for at least 2-3 weeks so that we can take care of medical needs and behavior evaluations. We remain supportive of our dogs’ needs throughout their lifetime.

The Adoption Process!

ARSD is excited to fit the needs of our dogs with the lifestyle of your family! So that we can support our adopters and our dogs, we try to adopt within a 2 – 3 hour drive of San Diego. There are always exceptions and you are welcome to inquire.

Completing the online Adoption Application:

Our application process involves several steps. The first step is submitting an online application via the Application Link. Please read this application carefully as required fields must be submitted, or the application will not go through to the next step. You will receive an onscreen confirmation once your application has been submitted. Our adoption coordinator typically responds to applications within 48 hours. Any additional information needed to process your application will be collected at this time. This may include more detailed questions and photos of your home. These photos will include pictures of your home and yard, including the fence. If renting, we will need to contact your landlord. If you have not heard back in 48 hours, please check your spam folder and then reach out to us at

Adoption fees:

Adoption fees are usually $500. These fees help offset our cost of care received while awaiting adoption. This includes medical care, spay/neuter surgery (when applicable), vaccines, food, toys, treats, chews, and more. We accept cash or check at the time of adoption.

The Big Day –The Adoption Meeting!

The moment everyone has been waiting for! Our staff at ARSD has spent countless hours getting to know our dogs, and now we are excited to get to know your family! To be confident that our dogs will be a great fit, we require all household members to come to the adoption meeting, including resident dogs.