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Pet adoptions are at ARF in Wainscott Fridays through Sundays 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by appointment. (Photo Courtesy of ARF)

It’s safe to say there’s no purer love than the love between a person and their pet. Whether you’re a dog person or a cat person, the bond formed between man and man’s best beast is undeniably strong and uniquely special. Here on the South Fork there are a couple of highly lauded places where you can adopt your own little furry friend. The process is relatively simple, but these organizations are thorough and are always striving for the best possible results, keeping the best interest of the animals in mind.

“Our adoptions director works closely with each adopter to find them their perfect pet,” says Jamie Berger, director of marketing and communications at the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons, Inc. (ARF), located in Wainscott.

ARF does in-person, same day adoptions at their Daniels Hole Road campus on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays out of their mobile adoption van from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by appointment. This coming Memorial Day marks the grand opening of their brand-new, state of the art facilities, allowing for adoption times to dramatically increase.

According to Berger, most start the process by looking at ARF’s website, where they can view the pets available for adoption. You can view the current roster of ARF’s dogs and cats by clicking here.

A lot of the requirements for adoption from ARF are specific to whether the potential adopter has other animals at their home.

In a separate section, ARF outlines the specific requirements for the adoption process. Firstly, if the potential adopters own other animals, the folks at ARF will call a veterinarian to make sure the animal is up to date on the appropriate vaccinations.

Next, a dog meet and greet is required, occurring either at ARF’s main campus or one of the organization’s many offsite adoption event where an ARF handler is present. The idea here is to meet on relatively neutral ground as it’s the most effective way to gauge the animal’s reaction. It’s recommended that the immediate family be present and all potential adopters must be 21 years old.

There are also some fees associated with adopting a pet from ARF. For dogs, it’s $200 while for puppies (up to 6 months old) it’s $300. Cats ages 1 to 6 are $75 and kittens are $100 or $150 for two up to 1 year old. Fees are waived for adult cats (those over 7 years old), but donations are appreciated. This helps with making sure all the animals are spayed or neutered, examined by a veterinarian and microchipped as well as dosed with other medications.

To view ARF’s specific adoption requirements, click here.

“Once you find that special cat or dog, there is nothing more rewarding than giving a home to a shelter pet,” says Berger. “But it’s a decision that should not be made impulsively, as it is a long-term commitment.”

Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation in Hampton Bays offers dozens of dogs, cats, rabbits, ferrets, guinea pigs and more for adoption. (Photo courtesy of Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation)

For nearly 15 years now, the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation (SASF) has been dedicated to nurturing and caring for homeless animals across the East End and beyond. Located on Old Riverhead Road in Hampton Bays, situated within Red Creek Park, SASF is home to dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, senior animals and animals with special needs. They operate as an open admission, no-kill animal shelter every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.. To start an application, click here. Potential adopters are encouraged to visit the animals during their playgroup time and to arrange meet and greets with adoption coordinators. Call 631-728-7383 for the playgroup time schedule.

“We want to make sure it’s a perfect fit,” says Nicole Tumilowicz, director of marketing at SASF. We recommend people visit our site and then after applying, get with one of our adoption specialists to schedule a meet and greet.”

Everyone in the household is required to meet the pet before adopting. As far as fees go, adult dogs are $160 while small dogs (under 30 pounds) and under 1 year olds are $310. Special needs dogs go for $110, while senior dogs and dogs that have been in the shelter for over one year are $85. Kittens are $100 (with two going for the price of one), adult cats cost $75, and cats wit special needs, senior cats (over 7 years old) and cats at the shelter for more than a year are $50. SASF also has other animals: ferrets are $75 (pending availability), rabbits of all ages are $50 and guinea pigs are $30. “We’ve even had roosters and chickens here,” says Tumilowicz. “Our roster is updated daily.”

According to Tumilowicz, SASF works with Southampton Town, specifically animal control, “around the clock.” Tumilowicz notes the paramount importance of financial responsibility of potential adopters along with whether or not they have other animals in their home.

All applications  for SASF are kept on file for 30 days upon submission. After that period, another application must be filled out.

Call SASF at 631-728-7387.