FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Q?

I want to adopt a pet as a surprise gift to a loved one, but BFPA will not let me. Why?

A.

We do not adopt our animals as gifts because we want to get to know the people who will own and care for that animal. They must submit the application form. As a note, it is never a good idea to give a dog or cat as a gift to someone else. They may not be ready to make such a lifelong commitment and you are forcing them to do so when they may not be prepared.

Q?

I went to an adoption event but was not allowed to take the pet of my choice home. Why?

A.

From past experiences, we have created an adoption process that requires the potential adopter to fully think through the commitment they are about to make. Anyone can get carried away by the emotional response of a cute furry face!! By taking time to reflect on your lifestyle, finances and other considerations over the next 10-20 years, you will be better equipped to make the best decision on such a long-term commitment. We take pet ownership seriously and want you to feel the same way.

Q?

I turned in an application for a certain pet but have heard nothing. What’s going on?

A.

Upon submitting an application to adopt a cat or dog from BFPA, you should receive either an email or a phone call that the form has been received (unless that application was submitted at an event or Adoptathon). If you have not heard acknowledgement that your application has been received, please email the appropriate party — the Cat Adoption Coordinator or the Dog Adoption Coordinator — in Contact BFPA.

Q?

Why should I adopt someone else’s problem pet?

A.

In the vast majority of cases, the cats and dogs in our foster care have been abandoned, abused or neglected. They may indeed have been viewed as “problems” by a previous owner, but our view is that the previous “owner” was the problem, not the innocent animal. We temperament test our animals as they are living in our foster homes and for the most part these cats and dogs thrive when they begin living in a stable loving environment free of abuse or neglect.

Q?

I want to come visit your dogs and cats. Where are you located?

A.

We are not a fixed shelter and have no “location.” Instead, all the dogs and cats in our care are living in volunteers’ foster homes. We do not allow visits with these animals in their foster homes unless an application has been submitted and approved. That’s because we protect and value our foster families’ time. No need for someone to come visit their home and their foster if that person or family might not be approved to adopt.

Q?

I’ve fallen in love with one of your rescued pets. When and where can I meet the animal?

A.

If your application to adopt a dog or cat is approved, we will set up meet and greets between you and the animal’s foster family. Our dogs and cats can also be seen at various events and Adoptathons in the Triangle area. Please check our calendar on the homepage to see our next event. Please note that not all our dogs and cats go to every event. It is up to the animal’s foster family to bring them if their schedule permits. We will try to post on the event schedule what dogs and cats we are expecting.

Q?

What do you consider the most important criteria for adopting a pet?

A.

The pledge that this animal will be a full-participating member of your family and you are committed to caring for and loving this animal for the rest of its life.

Q?

Why won’t you adopt out of the state of North Carolina?

A.

We prefer to adopt only to singles or families who live within a close proximity of our location in central North Carolina. This is because we want to meet anyone interested in adopting one of our dogs or cats and also conduct a home check. We also do not pay for shipping our animals to another location. Upon adopting from BFPA, you will sign a contract that says the animal will be returned to us if for any reason you cannot keep the pet. Most applicants conclude these transportation/shipping expenses are cost prohibitive.

Q?

Why do you have some adoption restrictions?

A.

Because of these restrictions, many have accused BFPA of being prejudiced against people under the age of 21 and/or the military. Nothing could be further from the truth. But our primary concern is the welfare of our cats and dogs and our goal is to find them permanent homes.

First, we require applicants to be at least 21 years old to adopt. That certainly eliminates most undergrad students and many in the military.

Second, students and members of the miltary live — in the vast majority of cases — transitory lives. There will be changes in the future.

A student’s life — with possibly several roommates and an active social life — is not a calm enough environment in which a dog or cat can settle. If roommates are involved, they all must be dedicated and willing to care the animal and that usually is not the case.

For the military, what would happen if you have to PCS? Could you take the pet with you? Would you be willing or able to pay the expenses involved to take your companion into another country? We believe the answer in most cases is “No.”

As we mentioned, our primary concern is for the cats and dogs we have rescued. The vast majority of these animals have either been passed around from home to home, thrown out to fend for themselves, or abused. By living in loving BFPA fosters homes, they are experiencing the first stable existence in their lives.

These animals now trust us to find them homes where they can live in peace the rest of their lives with no more upheaval. We are not willing to risk breaking that trust.

Q?

What if I adopt a dog or cat from BFPA and it doesn’t work out?

A.

Our adoption contract specifically addresses this scenario. If problems arise with a BFPA dog or cat down the road, we will work with you to try and resolve the issues. However, if all else fails and the animal can no longer live in your home, you are bound by the adoption contract to return the dog or cat to BFPA. Under no circumstances will the dog or cat be abandoned, sold or given over to an animal shelter or any other person.

Q?

I would like to foster for BFPA. Where do I begin?

A.

Fosters are the lifeblood of any rescue organization and we welcome your interest in giving one of our cats or dogs a temporary home. Please head over to our Volunteer section and check out our guidelines to Foster an Animal. Read more about what is required of a foster home commitment and how to submit an application to be either a cat or dog foster home.

Q?

What opportunities do you have for someone who wants to volunteer with BFPA?

A.

We have many fun opportunities for those who want to volunteer their time and talents to an animal rescue group. The rewards are many if you love animals the way we do! Head on over to our Volunteer section and check out the Current Opportunities.

Q?

We can no longer keep our personal pet. Can BFPA take it?

A.

BFPA does not accept personal pets into our rescue. There are a couple of reasons for this, the main being that we have very limited resources due to the fact that we are run entirely by volunteers, with donations, and out of foster homes. Because of this, we must limit our rescue efforts to helping strays and abused/neglected animals.

If you have challenges with your cat or dog, please first consult your veterinarian. Many times behavior issues can be traced to a medical problem or your pet may be in pain.

If the issue is not medical, consider hiring a professional behaviorist or trainer. We have links to several we highly recommend in Search Central of our Web site. Many issues can be corrected in one or two sessions.

If working with a behaviorist or trainer does not help or is not an option, you must take the responsibility of finding your pet a new home. You must honor the commitment you made when you brought this pet into your family. There’s guidance in Rehome your pet.

Q?

I found some abandoned kittens. I can foster them but will you help me find them a good home?

A.

Foster care is the most vital element to keeping our rescue alive. All rescue groups are in a position to help more animals if more people would open their homes to fostering the cats and dogs in need.

So if you have found a cat of dog, kittens or puppies … and can continue to foster the animal until a home is found, BFPA most likely can help. We have certain criteria that you as a foster home would have to meet, but if approved to be a BFPA foster we could provide medical care, vaccinations and adoption screening for the animal you saved.

To get started, please contact our Cat Foster Home Coordinator or Dog Foster Home Coordinator to inquire if BFPA can help you help an animal in need.

Q?

Where do you get the dogs and cats in your rescue program?

A.

There are more cats and dogs in need in the Triangle area than all the rescue groups and animal shelters can admit to their programs. So finding them is not difficult. Our network of volunteers is vast and many of the animals admitted to BFPA come through them or their associates.

We also pull cats and dogs who are on death row from area animal shelters.

Q?

Why do you discourage adopting to families with children under 5?

A.

In most cases, young children do not understand how to properly treat a pet. The exception would be if there already is a dog or cat in the home and the children know to let the pet have its space, don’t rush up to it, pull its tail, or reach into their food bowl or for their pet toy while the dog or cat is playing with it.

In general, we will not adopt a puppy or kitten to a family with a young child in the home. Not only could it be physically dangerous for the animal, but also for the child. Puppies and kittens are used to playing with their littermates, and would view a young child as a fellow littermate. Play-biting and scratching, nibbling and clawing are the ways puppies and kittens communicate. And although these actions are not signs of aggression in the puppy or kitten, their teeth and claws are very sharp.

If there are children in the home, your best bet is to consider adopting a medium – to large size dog over six months of age. We do not recommend toy-sized dogs less than 20lbs. of any age if you have young children, as these fine-boned canines don’t hold up well to rough, clumsy handling.