Best 5 Dog Rescue & Shelters in San Jose, CA (2023)

Dog adoption is a beautiful thing. There are millions of pets in shelters and rescues waiting for forever homes. Adopting a dog can help homeless animals and set an excellent example for others.

Dog adoption isn’t suitable for everyone, and it’s not something you should get into lightly. Getting a dog is an important decision that will affect your life for many years. If you’ve decided dog adoption is for you, this is excellent news!

Bringing an adopted dog into your home should be a rewarding experience for you and your family. Before looking for your future best friend, arm yourself with the knowledge to navigate the world of dog adoption and make the best possible decision.

We’ve compiled a list of the top San Jose dog rescue & shelters with an adoption guide.

Top 5 Dog Rescues & Shelters in San Jose

Adoption is an alternative that benefits everyone when it comes to acquiring a pet: the family, animal protection entities, and, of course, the dog itself

Shelters across the country house approximately eight million companion animals each year.  Yet, nearly 50% of them are euthanized due to the shelter’s lack of resources.

Dog Rescues & Shelters

1) Care Companion Animal Rescue Effort

Founded in 1987, the Companion Animal Rescue Effort (C.A.R.E.) is a nonprofit, all volunteer, animal rescue organization based in Santa Clara County. They accept owner-relinquished dogs as well as abandoned, abused, or otherwise-neglected puppies and dogs that would otherwise face uncertain futures working with Bay Area shelters. These once homeless animals are taken into (C.A.R.E.) volunteer foster homes where they receive quality nutrition, medical attention, and lots of love and warmth until placed into quality, pre-screened, permanent homes.

Because C.A.R.E. is a “no-kill” animal rescue organization, (C.A.R.E.) animals (except in extreme cases) remain in foster care until adopted into quality, loving homes, regardless how long this may take. This long-term care can lead to further expenses over and above the animal’s initial medical expenses. All of (C.A.R.E.) dogs and puppies are spayed or neutered and microchipped prior to adoption.

Since C.A.R.E. is a non-profit organization that does not receive local or federal funding, they depend on fundraisers along with support from (C.A.R.E.) community and adoption fees to keep us operational. C.A.R.E. is committed not only to saving the lives of homeless animals but to public education. It is (C.A.R.E.) belief that with knowledge about responsible pet guardianship (in all its forms), they can curb and eventually end, the suffering of neglected animals and the tragedy of pet overpopulation which last year alone resulted in over 13 million pets euthanized in (C.A.R.E.) nation’s animal shelters.

Care Companion Animal Rescue Effort Information and Details:


  • Mailing Address: 1080 Saratoga Ave # 3, San Jose, CA 95123, United States
  • Website:
  • Phone: +14082272273
Dog Rescues & Shelters

2) The Baja S.A.F.E.

Baja S.A.F.E. Mission – to save all the stray dogs in the area of San Jose del Cabo. They are non-profit and the organization does an amazing job finding the strays and saving them from disease and death.

Your generous donations and support, gives very sick pets a second chance. Here is a video of rescued dogs and cats, when they first brought them to Baja SAFE and after the rehabilitation, a happy adoption. Thank you all for your support.

The Baja S.A.F.E. Information and Details:


Dog Rescues & Shelters

3) South Bay Purebred Rescue

South Bay Purebred Rescue screen by asking a variety of questions in person at the pet fairs or over the phone if they are setting up an appointment during the week. Once a determination has been made that the dog may be a match for your family, you get to meet with the dog and decide if you’d like to adopt.

Then you will be given an adoption contract to fill out and sign. Pay the adoption fee and you go home with your new pet! They are as careful as they can to place dogs in well-matched situations. If they feel that the dog you’re interested in is not a good match for your family, schedule, level of experience or any other reason, they will not do the adoption.
South Bay Purebred Rescue will try and guide you to another dog that would be more appropriate for you, but there is no appeal process once an adoption is declined. they cannot hold dogs. If you decide to wait on making a decision, please be prepared for the fact that the dog you were interested may be adopted by someone else in the meantime.

Established in 1998.
South Bay Purebred Rescue was founded by a few veteran foster homes. Trying to stand out among dozens of other groups, They chose to focus primarily on purebred dogs (although they are still suckers and do take mixed breeds regularly).

South Bay Purebred Rescue Information and Details:


  • Address: P.O. Box 595, Morgan Hill, CA. 95038, United States
  • Website:
  • Phone: (408) 629-8293
Dog Rescues & Shelters

4) Angel’s Furry Friends Rescue

Angel’s Furry Friends Rescue Established in 2018.
They are a 501(c)3 non-profit animal rescue group dedicated to saving lives and finding forever homes for homeless dogs and cats and also animals taken from kill and underfunded shelters in California Bay Area and beyond.

Angel’s Furry Friends Rescue are a charity organization relying exclusively on donations and help from volunteers and foster homes.

They actively work with local rescue groups and select overseas shelters to help save cats and dogs from euthanasia and inhumane extermination.

Angel’s Furry Friends Rescue Information and Details:


Dog Rescues & Shelters

5) Our Pack

Our Pack’s mission is to keep pets from entering shelters in the first place, by providing free spay/neuter, education, training, post adoption support, rescue, and facilitating the lifelong bond between pets and their people.

Our Pack’s vision is that there will be fewer pets entering shelters and more pets staying home, and equal treatment of all animals regardless of breed or species.

Our Pack Information and Details:


  • Address: 1177 Branham Ln Ste 235 San Jose, CA 95118, United States
  • Website:
  • Phone: (408) 460-4244

Dog Rescue & Shelter Online

We hope that one of the shelters listed above can help you find your future dog, but if for some reason that doesn’t happen you can always opt for different alternatives.

For this reason, we’ve added these alternative platforms. These platforms will help you connect with people who have dogs for sale or adoption near you. It can be a great alternative in looking for your future pup within the comfort of your home.

AKC Market Place

Finding trustworthy dog breeders, groomers, and trainers can be challenging. AKC Marketplace is your trusted resource to help make a lifetime of responsible dog ownership safe, happy, and healthy.

AKC Marketplace® is the only website that exclusively lists puppies from AKC-Registered litters, so you can choose a breeder with confidence.

Adopt A Pet

If you want to give an abandoned puppy a second chance, a shelter is definitely the place to find a dog.

Adopt a pet is North America’s largest non-profit pet adoption website. They help over 21,000 animal shelters, humane societies, SPCAs, pet rescue groups, and pet adoption agencies advertise their homeless pets to millions of adopters a month, for free.

Puppies for sale Today

Puppies Today has over a decade of experience, established in 2008. They pride themselves on connecting loving families with new furry friends and have happy customers all over the nation. They provide all of their customer’s puppy payment plans and health guarantees to ensure the best experience and peace of mind when adopting a puppy through their service.

Dog Rescues & Shelters

Check Out Our Dog Breeders Page :


How much does it cost to adopt a dog?

Generally, it will cost around $50 to $150 for a dog – and because typically shelters and rescuers give pets medical treatment, you’ll save money on a medical examination; you’ll also likely save on spay or neuter surgery, which can cost around $50 to $300.

Aside from the puppy’s price, it would be best to consider the expenses that would come with it. For instance, you may want to get the essential things for your puppies like grooming tools, food, and shelter.

What kind of dog should you adopt?

If you have decided to adopt a dog, you may want a mixed breed dog. Or, you can have your heart set on a specific dog breed. It is possible to adopt purebred dogs from shelters and rescues if you plan ahead. However, if you’re not set on a particular breed, you should still have an idea of ​​the type of dog you want.

Consider age, size, care needs, health concerns, and activity level. Have your wishes in mind before you go looking. Better yet, create a list of dog characteristics that is divided into three areas:

  • What do you absolutely need in a dog: Do you have children, cats, or other dogs? The dog you adopt must be able to get along well with everyone in your home. Are you in an apartment or small house and need a small dog? Are you allergic to certain types of dogs and need a hypoallergenic breed? These are just some of the things to consider.
  • What you would like in a dog but can live without: Maybe you have a soft spot for a specific breed but will be happy with a mix of that breed. Maybe you want a dog with short hair, but don’t worry about a little extra grooming if you meet a big long-haired dog.
  • What is not acceptable to you: these are dealbreakers. What qualities would prevent you from even considering a certain dog? Dimension? Temperament? Maybe you have a fear or dislike for a certain dog breed. Perhaps you are renting out your home and have to meet specific rental requirements.

Write everything down and take the list with you. That way, when you go out and see all those cute faces, you will know where to start.

When not to adopt a dog

It is best to avoid adopting a dog in the following circumstances:

  • You are in the process of moving
  • You are remodeling or repairing your home
  • You are about to have a baby (it is usually best to have the baby and let life stabilize a bit before introducing a new dog)
  • It’s the holiday season ( dogs aren’t meant to be gifts and holidays are usually too hectic for a new dog)
  • You or someone in your family is going through other major life events (the new dog may be lost in the shuffle or be overwhelmed by chaos)

The Dog Adoption Process

Well done! You have found your new dog. Now is the time for formalities. Most organizations require an application before they can adopt. This is to prevent pets from falling into the wrong hands. While it may sound like an interrogation, these groups have policies in place for a reason. Fortunately, many people have no problem getting approval.

Some groups require a waiting period before bringing your new dog home, possibly due to a medical procedure that has been done. Some dogs may have a waiting list, so ask questions beforehand.

Find out what the adoption fee includes (vaccines, spay/neuter, etc.). Before signing the contract, learn what you expect from yourself and what the group will do to help you. If the dog is too young to be spayed or neutered, the contract will require it to do so in the future. Also, find out what happens if you can’t keep the dog.

Most organizations ask you to return the dog to them if you can no longer care for it (don’t give it away to someone else). Find out what is known about the dog’s history and what health problems, if any, were noted while the dog was in their care.

Final Thoughts

Remember, it can take a long time for a dog to adjust to a new home. You and your family will need time to adjust. You may notice that your new dog has behavioral problems, fears, phobias, or lacks training. If the adaptation period is long and complex, it’s a good idea to seek the assistance of a dog trainer or behaviorist.

You may need to consult more than one. Be patient and follow the advice of the experts. If you feel that you have genuinely exhausted your options, you may decide to give up on your new dog.

Remember to try to get your dog back to the place of adoption first. If this is not an option, you need to be responsible and find a good home for your dog. I hope you never have to be in this situation.


  • Jessica Vanclap

    Passionate about animals, but also about health, I did not hesitate for long in choosing my studies. Veterinary assistant by training, I worked in a veterinary clinic for several years. I then made the choice to share my knowledge and experiences by joining the training team of a school of Veterinary Assistant and Grooming.