All of the shelter’s adoptable dogs have been evaluated for medical or behavioral issues before they are made available for adoption to the public. San Francisco Animal Care & Control designates that certain dogs be adopted with Proactive Guardian Requirements, ensuring that the potential adopter can give our dogs a safe, happy home that reinforces the training and care received at the shelter.

Dogs that have been historically coveted, used, stolen, and trained for illegal purposes such a dog fighting, or dogs that have been traditionally used for guarding or bull-baiting, are subject to these adoption requirements to ensure they are trained humanely, socialized properly, and never put in a position of harm. Some examples of breeds with these extra requirements include German Shepherds, Pit Bull-type dogs, Rottweilers, Huskies, etc.

None of the dogs available for adoption at ACC have previously displayed aggressive behavior or caused injury to a person or other animal, but we recognize that a stigma exists around strong, well-muscled dogs and a guardian must be prepared to manage this, as well as appropriately train, exercise, and care for their new pet.

ACC Screening Standards for Proactive Guardian Requirements

Potential adopters of dogs designated for Proactive Guardian Requirements must meet the following criteria in addition to our regular screening standards to ensure the safety of these dogs and demonstrate understanding of responsible, humane care for stigmatized breeds.

  1. Applicants should have previously owned a strong, large-breed dog or demonstrate knowledge on how to manage and appropriately care for them.
  2. Applicants must provide (within 24 hours) a paid deposit receipt to enroll in a positive reinforcement-based training class approved by ACC, as proof of their commitment.
  3. Applicants must agree to a possible premise inspection by an Animal Control Officer.


Related Links:
About Pit Bulls