Adoption Process

First, thank you for thinking of adopting a needy Airedale.

We serve North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, and Alabama.

When your application reaches us, the process begins. The adoption process is to make sure that the Airedales adopted through us are going to great homes. After all, they are on their second chance – so we want this match to last! Because we all work full time, our response time may be slower than you expect. We appreciate your patience.

The Application

We keep your application on file while we look for the right match for you, your family and your lifestyle.

There are no right or wrong answers. We need to know as much as we can about you so that everyone ends up with the Airedale they are supposed to have. Be honest—so you end up with the best pet for you and/or your family.

Getting to Know You

After receiving your application, we talk over the phone to understand what your needs are so that we can “fit” the Airedale to the home. We call for a reference from your vet. We arrange a home visit by one of our rescue volunteers in your area. That way we can get to know you better and you can meet someone who has gone through the process.

Then comes the hard part — the WAITING!  It can be frustrating waiting for a dog once you’ve applied, so we’d like to explain our guiding principles for matching dogs and applicants.

We match dogs and applicants based on the needs of both. This includes a variety of facts — special needs and age of dog, need for medical care and access to our vets, transport distances, urgency of placement, and the details and circumstances of qualified adopters. It’s best to apply and be approved, so you are ready to receive an available Airedale.

Our focus is to ensure that the dogs find the best place to spend the rest of their lives. They can’t talk, so they depend on us to make that happen.

Finding your Airedale

Next is finding just the right Airedale for you and/or your family. Sometimes it takes days, and sometimes months. When an Airedale comes into rescue, they are taken to a vet for a checkup. All shots are brought up to date, a fecal and heart worm check is done to make sure they are clear of all parasites. Upon adoption, we provide you with all of the behavioral and medical information we have.

If the Airedale is not spayed or neutered, that is done before placement. No Airedale is adopted with their AKC papers, even if we receive them. This prevents the dog from being sold with papers in the future.

Adoption Agreement and Fee

At adoption, you are asked to sign an adoption agreement. The agreement sets out our minimum standards to keeping this dog and states that if for any reason you must give up the Airedale, you will return the dog to us. There is a “no questions asked” guarantee from us. There is an adoption fee that goes into our fund (we are a designated 501(c)3 non-profit organization) for the medical bills of future rescued Airedales. The adoption fee is $400 and payable when you receive the dog.

To help settle our Airedales in with their new family, a phone consultation with ARG’s animal behaviorist, Corinna Murray, DVM, CPC, is included with the adoption fee. For more information or to connect with Dr Murray directly see:

We make every effort to help the adoptive family succeed in their adoption of a great Airedale. If it just doesn’t work out, we take the dog back. No questions asked.

Thanks again for thinking of adoption. We will contact you after we receive your application.  Please be patient as we are all volunteers with families, Airedales, jobs, and generally busy lives… just like you. Thank you.

28 Replies to “Adoption Process”

  1. i am following up on the application I filled out a few days ago. I am not sure it went through. If I need to fill out another application please let me know.

    Thanks so much,

    Juana A. Bare

  2. My name is Charlie Boozer Sr. I submitted an application and you called me a few days ago. I would like to speak to you again concerning the Airedale in Charleston, SC. Please call me at 843-869-0987. Thanks.

    1. Hi, Charlie. I apologize that I didn’t see this message until today. Normally, they come to my email as well as to this site, but this one did not! The Charleston Airedale is being fostered; in fact, she is going to return to her owner within the next couple of weeks. Please call me at 901-438-5782 if there is something else that you’d like to speak about. Thank you and I wish you and your family the best of the season and new year! Jackie

  3. Hi Jackie,
    Happy belated New Year! This is Yana Whitman from Spartanburg, SC. We learned about your organization from Caleb and Andrea. We submitted our application a few months ago. You and I spoke on the phone already as well. Andrea did the home inspection mid-November or so. Can you give me an update please on next steps, timing, etc. Thank you.
    PS. I’ve got two boys that are beyond eager…

    1. Hi, Yana. I’m happy to hear from you. I spoke to Andrea right after the home visit and she said she just hadn’t had time to put together the report but would do so and send it to me. Since then, I’ve emailed her at least 3 times, the last time Dec. 18th, to get her report and I’ve had no response. I’ll call her again and see what the problem is. I thought perhaps you and Doug had changed your mind. I’m glad to hear that you’re still interested! I will get back with you.

    1. Hi, Jim. I believe one of our other volunteers has responded to you, but I just wanted to follow up. Do you live in one of the states we rescue and place Airedales in? Those are NC, SC, GA, TN, and AL. If so, please go our web site: and click on Adopt and then Adoption Application. One of our volunteers will then contact you to discuss your application. Thank you.

  4. Hello

    Growing up in Knoxville, our family had Airedale Terriers, from a breeder near Morristown in East Tennessee.

    My husband and I now have an Airedale-Treeing Walker Coon Hound mix that we adopted from Airedale Terrier Rescue of Virginia in January of 2012, as a puppy. We adore our “Winnie.” She has a lot of energy, and sounds very much like “Kate.” As our trainer said when we took her to classes, “Winnie has crazy on both sides of the family.”

    I’d like to have an active companion for Winnie. We have a large fenced-in area, which we are reinforcing as Winnie is able to dig and riggle out. My husband and I are both retired, and would be able to spend lots of time with Kate and Winnie. We all love to hike, and take several walks a day. We live in rural New Hampshire, with 7 1/2 acres of land.

    We will be traveling to Nashville in mid-Septermber. If Kate is still available, would we be able to come to see her? And see if Winnie and Kate get along? If so, we could take her back to New Hampshire with us.

    Of course, I would not want to prevent Kate from going to another forever home, if someone suitable wanted her before we could get her together with Winnie.

    Please let me know if this is possible, and if so, I will fill out the adoption form.

    1. Hello, Laura & Ed. Thank you for your message re Kate. Kate’s mom called me just yesterday afternoon and told me they have decided not to relinquish her. They have been in touch with a trainer who can help them help her overcome her reactivity to other dogs. (I have to update her post!) However, except under extraordinary circumstances, we do not adopt outside of our area: NC, SC, TN, GA, and AL. It sounds like your Winnie is a very lucky girl and I wish you luck in finding a companion for her.

  5. Hello, I am getting a connection error for many of the pages on your web site. I there someone I can speak with about adoption?
    Thanks 615-542-5328

    1. Hi, Trent. We did receive your application on Thursday, and Sue Taylor, one of our interview volunteers, will contact you soon. We appreciate your patience. Thank you!

  6. Hi, I completed the adoption application a few years ago and wondered if I need to do so again? We lost our Farifax in 2015, he was 15 and the light of our life but left a hole that needs to be filled.

    1. Hi, Nancy. Yes, we do still have your application. I’m so sorry you lost your Fairfax, but he lived a long life and was obviously much loved by you and Phillip. One of our volunteers will be in touch within the next week to talk to you and update our information. Thank you for contacting us and we appreciate your interest in adopting a rescued Airedale.

  7. Hi there,
    My family and I are interested in adopting a young adult female airedale terrier. We have 3 small kids, and 5 acres of land.
    Can you please let me know if a young lady comes up that fits the bill?



    1. Hi, Zachari. Thank you for your two messages to Airedale Rescue Group. If you are in our region – NC, SC, TN, GA, or AL, please fill out an application here on our web site under “Adopt.” Once we receive your application, one of our volunteers will contact you for an interview to go over the application and learn more about your family and your expectations of a rescued Airedale. The interview will be followed by a home visit and reference checks. Once you are approved for an Airedale, we will do our best to match you to an Airedale that will fit your lifestyle. (If you are NOT in our region, please go to and search under Regional rescue contacts for the representative in your area.) Thank you again for considering a rescued Airedale.

    1. Hi, Jeff. All of the regional Airedale rescue organizations try to keep their adoptions within their states. We would only adopt outside our area under extraordinary circumstances, and typically those would be in contiguous states. South Dakota is a long way from our region. I wish you luck in your search for an Airedale.

  8. Hi, I’m currently without a dog but have had them in the past. I live in Holly Springs, NC. My question for your group is whether you think an Airedale would be okay for me. I’m retired, have my house listed for sale and plan to tour America in an Airstream trailer. My previous breeds were both small and large (terrier, cocker, and Great Dane). I’ve never had an Airedale before but know people who have and I like the breed.

    1. Hi, Terry. We would need to know a lot more before we can answer your question, which we will if you fill out and submit an application to adopt. However, I would think that adopting a dog and immediately going on the road could be confusing and unsettling for the dog. Airedales need a lot of mental and physical stimulation and I don’t think they’d like being cooped up – even with their person – for long periods. It would be frustrating for an Airedale to be tethered all the time when you are at a camp site. There would also be the problem of where they could stay when you need to go inside places – restaurants, stores for provisions, tourist sites. Airedales are very prey-driven and should not be trusted off-leash without consistent training and an established relationship. Your question has made me think about this and I think I have arrived at an answer to your question: No, I don’t think a rescued Airedale would be the dog for you.

  9. Is Dash still available? Jackie – Pam McKusick of the DC Airedale group suggested we reach out to you. My wife and I have a few questions about Dash. Please feel free to email us.

    1. Hi, Mark. Thank you for your message. Dash has been available a good while because of his age and because of his anxieties. However, we now have someone within our region (NC, SC, TN, GA, AL) who wants Dash and we are finalizing the details for them. As Pam probably told you, all of the Airedale rescue organizations try to stay within their region for adoptions and rescues. I will keep your name and if our local potential does not come through, I will get in touch. Thank you so much. Jackie

  10. Hi, Shelia. I responded to your direct email to, but wanted to make sure that you got that message. Bella-Jo was adopted last weekend; however, I did not update our web page. You are on our Approved list and will be considered for any Airedale we get that will fit your family and lifestyle. Thank you for loving Airedales! Jackie

  11. Hello
    I filled out an application and just want to make sure mine went through ? We are desperately wanting to adopt an Airedale. We lost our sweet girl 4 months ago. Our house is quiet and sad.
    Best regards,
    Sherry Spain

    1. Hi, Sherry. Thank you for contacting us. Yes, we did receive your application and you will be contacted soon. We are short-handed currently and are behind on our applications.

      I’m so sorry you recently lost your sweet Aire-girl. It’s so hard to lose one of our beloved animals.

      Thank you for your patience and we look forward to helping you find the right Airedale for your home.

  12. We submitted an application 2 weeks ago and wanted to be sure you received it and have approved us for consideration of possible adoption. We also wanted to know if Banjo was adopted as he sounded like a potential good fit for us. We live in Atlanta where he is but have also travelled out of state for 3 of our 4 past Airedales. One last question… what is the average time it takes to be contacted about a potential rescue dog? Thanks very much for helping us.

    1. Hello, Carol & Bob. I apologize that no one has contacted you about your application yet. We have been short of volunteers, but someone will contact you this week. Before you can be approved to adopt, we’ll have to do a telephone interview and a home visit. Banjo has special needs and though we still have him listed as “fostering,” we do not believe he will ever leave his foster home. Thank you for your patience.

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