Humane Rescue Alliance

Washington, Washington DC

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About Humane Rescue Alliance

Humane Rescue Alliance in Washington, DC was founded in 2016 by the historic merger of two iconic animal welfare organizations:

  • Washington Humane Society
  • Washington Animal Rescue League

Both organizations have more than 100 years of experience protecting, rescuing, and caring for animals in the District of Columbia.

In 2019, Humane Rescue Alliance and St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center of Madison, New Jersey, merged to create the first regional, community-based, multi-state animal welfare organization in the nation.

Humane Rescue Alliance helps the people and pets in their community through several high-impact initiatives:

  • Provide affordable veterinary care
  • Bring people and pets together through adoptions and foster homes
  • Support pets in their homes by offering a variety of free services
  • Run wildlife and feral cat programs
  • Enforce animal ordinances and serve as local animal control
  • Instill kindness in young people through humane education programs
  • Celebrate the human-animal bond through volunteer opportunities

Considering adoption from Humane Rescue Alliance? Learn more about their adoption process and fees below.

Contact Info

1201 New York Ave NE
(202) 723-5730

Hours of Operation

Mon: Closed
Tue: 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Wed: 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Thu: 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Fri: 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Sat: 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Sun: 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Adoption Process

Humane Rescue Alliance has a straightforward adoption process:

  1. Begin your search by browsing available animals on Humane Rescue Alliance's website.
  2. If an animal's online profile says they’re in a foster home, contact the foster family directly. Their contact info is provided on the pet's page. (You can also skip the online stuff and visit the shelter directly.)
  3. If the animal you're interested in adopting is at the shelter's facility, drop by to interact with them and make sure they're a good match for your personality and lifestyle.
  4. If you'd like to move forward, complete an adoption questionnaire.
  5. Attend a counseling session with an adoption specialist. They’ll review relevant background info about the animal, including all medical and behavioral information on record. This is a great opportunity for you to ask questions about welcoming your newest family member into your home.
  6. If you're ready to finalize the adoption, all that's left is to complete the required paperwork and pay the adoption fee.
  7. Schedule a time to bring your new companion home!

Adoption Fees

Adoption fees at Humane Rescue Alliance are as follows:


  • Puppies (up to 6 months): $250
  • Adults (6+ months):  $200
  • Seniors (7–9 years): $100
  • Seniors (10+ years): $50


  • Kittens (up to 6 months): $125
  • Adults (6+ months): $100
  • Seniors (7–9 years): $50
  • Seniors (10+ years): $25

Your dog or cat adoption fee covers spay/neuter surgery, age-appropriate vaccinations, microchipping, and heartworm testing for dogs 6+ months old. As required by law, a $15 fee for a dog license will be added for dogs going to homes in the District of Columbia.

Small Animals

  • Rabbits: $45
  • Guinea Pigs: $20
  • Ferrets: $35
  • Small Birds (parakeets, finches, etc.): $10
  • Large Birds (larger than a Budgie): $25
  • Other small animals: $10


  • The Cats Go Marching Two by Two: Adopt one cat, and the adoption fee is waived for a feline companion (of equal or lesser adoption fee) within two weeks of adopting the first.
  • Boomer’s Buddies: Adopters who are 50+ years old may adopt an animal 5+ years old for a waived fee.
  • Military-Veteran Discount: 50% off adoption fees upon presentation of a military ID (active, reserve, or veteran). Humane Rescue Alliance is also a proud partner of Pets for Patriots. More information about the registration process, benefits, eligibility, and animal requirements can be found online at Pets for Patriots website.
  • Small Animals: Some species of small animals benefit from companionship. Adopt one, and the adoption fee for the second one will be waived when adopted in pairs. Certain exceptions apply. Additionally, certain animals (birds, turtles, fish, etc.) may be adopted in groups of three or more. Adopt one at the standard species-specific fee and each additional animal will be just $1. Limits for group adoptions are based on species-specific requirements for humane housing, as well as legal pet limits and/or hobby permit restrictions.

Adoption Process & Fees

Our writing team is hard at work researching this shelter's adoption process and fees, so this page will be updated soon!

In the meantime, here's some nice-to-know info that applies to nearly every animal shelter, humane society, and rescue.

Why Rescue A Shelter Dog?

Because shelter dogs are full of love!

Is it because they know you saved them and love you harder for it?

I can't say for certain, but yes.

Jokes aside, there are three things all shelter dogs need to thrive in their new home:

  1. Love
  2. Patient
  3. Training

Older shelter dogs, generally 1+ years old, may have experienced a lot of trauma, which often results in one of 8 common behavioral issues:

  1. Anxiety
  2. Aggression toward people & pets
  3. Resource guarding
  4. Destructive behavior
  5. Housetraining regression
  6. Poor social skills
  7. Leash reactivity & barrier-related aggression
  8. Constant whining

These issues are correctable! Your dog isn't broken, they're just damaged. You can fix them with enough love, patience, and a good training plan.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, finding good dog trainers can be hard. Like everything else, dog training is moving only. but there are great online dog trainers that are proven to work and can help get your new pup on the right path.

Animal Shelter vs Humane Society vs Rescue: What's the Difference?

You can learn a lot about an animal welfare organization just by looking at their name.

Animal Shelters

  • Most Animal Shelters are city or county-run organizations, often operated by the local Animal Control department, that manage strays and handle owner surrenders.
  • They usually have kennel facilities you can visit to adopt animals, and they usually have less stringent adoption requirements, lower adoption fees, and same-day adoptions (because their goal is to get animals out of the shelter).
  • Unfortunately, they usually know very little about each animal, including their true personalities and any behavioral problems.

Humane Societies

  • Most Humane Societies are non-profit organizations, many of which are no-kill shelters.
  • Some (but not all) are affiliated with The Humane Society of the United States.
  • They exist to improve animal welfare in the local community and often partner with city or county-run Animal Shelters that often euthanize animals due to capacity restraints.
  • They usually have kennel facilities, sometimes at multiple locations, and usually offer other services to the community such as low-cost spay/neuter clinics, community education programs, and more.
  • They may also have some animals in foster care.
  • There's a lot of variation in process and fees among Humane Societies, but they usually have really good websites that detail everything for you.


  • Most Rescues are foster-based organizations that don't have physical facilities.
  • They usually have websites and contact emails, but not all of them have phone numbers.
  • Because they don't have a physical facility, you need to view animals in their foster network online, usually on their website but sometimes on their member pages on either PetFinder or Adopt-a-Pet.
  • If you see an animal you'd like to meet, contact the rescue using the process listed on their website or via email. They'll help you through the application process and set up a time for you to meet the animal at the foster's home.
  • Adopting from a rescue generally is the most expensive option here and takes the longest, but you get an animal that's been cared for in a loving home environment and their foster can tell you a lot about their personality.

6 Tips to Improve Your Adoption Experience

Adoption processes vary drastically from organization to organization, but here are some general tips that apply in most instances. Note that we'll use the term "shelters" here for simplicity but it includes all types of rescue organizations.

  1. See an animal online that you'd like to meet? Call the shelter before your visit to make sure the animal is still available. This especially applies for puppies, which are adopted out quickly.
  2. Usually, you'll need to get some paperwork in order: a photo ID, vaccination/medical records for any pets you currently have, possibly your vet's contact info and a couple of personal references, and (for renters) proof you're allowed to have a pet (copy of your lease or your landlord's contact info).
  3. If you need to provide contact info for your vet, let your vet know ahead of time. Otherwise, they may not release your information.
  4. Many shelters require your current dogs to meet adoptive dogs. Your current dogs need to be up-to-date on vaccinations.
  5. Some shelters require you to schedule a home visit to ensure a suitable living environment for the new animal.
  6. Adoption fees may seem excessive, but they're actually amazing values. Truthfully, caring for a pet is expensive. Most adoption fees include required medical care to get the animal ready for their new home including (but not limited to) spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, general vet exams, flea/tick treatment, deworming, heartworm testing/treatment for dogs, and feline leukemia and feline AIDS testing/treatment for cats. In general, your adoption fee is less than the cost of this care, so you're saving money in addition to your new animal's life!

If you have any questions about adopting an animal (what you'll need, what to expect, etc.) feel free to contact the PetLists team!

For more information about what's included in your adoption fee, or any other questions about the adoption process, reach out to
Humane Rescue Alliance
Washington DC
directly using the contact info above.

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Other Shelters in

Washington DC

Curious about other shelters? Here's 6 more. You can also browse all
animal shelters in
Washington DC

You can also go back to our listing of all 50 states to find shelters elsewhere in the US.
All information on this page is accurate and up-to-date to the best of our knowledge. If you spot an error, please contact us using our contact form.
Note: Hours of operation and other information on this page are subject to change during the COVID-19 pandemic.