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Frequently Asked Questions


Where are you located?


Our main sanctuary/rescue facility is in Batesville, Arkansas. We are also licensed near Chicago, Illinois therefore have a foster program and hold adoption events in that area. We are strictly foster dependent in Illinois and are always looking for new fosters as well as volunteers! We also have a Chapter in Vermont. Vermont is a transport state only althoughwe do have a board member there who handles home visits and meets/pickups. In addition, we can adopt out in other states with an approved application but the price may be higher due to transportation. We mainly adopt out in the Illinois area. All Tails dogs and puppies as are available for adoption in Illinois. Once we get them healthy and ready we transport twice per month to their new homes or foster locations!

What is your adoption fee?


Puppies: $285

Adults: $185 unless otherwise specified.

Cats: $150

Illinois and Michigan

Puppies & Young Adults up to 2 Years Old: $485.00

2-4 Year Olds: $385

Over 4 Years: $285

Due to transportation cost, health certifications required by law to cross state lines, etc. This fee covers all vetting with the option to opt out and use your own vet for the spay and neuter. If adopters choose this, once sending us proof of procedure, we reimburse $100 as this is what the alter cost us under the rescue.

Cats: $185


Puppies: $525.00 (We use HEARTS LLC Transport Service)

Adults: $400

(This cost more due to the transportation cost with hearts including all the paperwork, health certification to cross state lines etc.)

Please Note: prices can vary at times for different reasons such as if a dog/puppy is sponsored. This will always be noted if reduced.

What breeds or ages are your dogs/puppies?


Our dogs and puppies come in all shapes and sizes! Majority of our puppies are found as abandoned/strays or come from other rescues and shelters. The breed and age can only be an educated guess. However, when we know this information we will always post it otherwise just consider them the best breed there is...Rescue Breed!

When can I meet the dog or puppy?

Once you have an approved application on file then we can set up a meet and greet depending on your location. If the dog/puppy you are interested in is in a different location then you, we may then place a deposit to secure the dog/puppy for one of our transports.

What is your adoption process?

First step is filling out the adoption application. Please always be sure to fill it out completely and be accurate as we run a legal background check and when questions are unanswered or not answered accurately the application will not be accepted. This can delay the process or if filled out untruthfully, you are banned from ever adopting through TOTFP. We do call and speak with your vet, landlord, and other references so please make sure all information is provided accurately. Once processed, screened, and approved (this takes 1 to 3 days) we then contact the applicant via email and text with an approval for adoption. From there, we can then set up a meet and greet if you are in the area or you can reserve a specific puppy or dog for our next transport. 


Once adoption is confirmed, we have a legally binding contract that must be signed before you can take your new friend home. If you are in Illinois or Michigan and the puppy or dog you are interested in is still in Arkansas and set for transport, to reserve the dog/puppy we require a $175.00 deposit/reservation fee (remaining due at pickup). Pickup is always done at PetSmart in Hoffman Estates for Illinois and Michigan adopters). Once this deposit is made the dog or puppy is considered adopted to the approved applicant and is marked off our sites and no longer available. They are then scheduled and prepared for their new homes. 

Deposit for Cats: $75

Vermont adopters, to hold and reserve, we require a $175.00 deposit with the remaining due 3 days before the scheduled transport with HEARTS LLC (as we must pay this directly to them before they will transport). The deposits ensure the legally required vetting prior to transport is paid as well as the transport itself. It also prevents us from holding pups just to turn other adopters down for them to decide last minute they did not want the dog or puppy. 

Once approvals are sent, we recommend reserving reserve right away if you are sure about a specific dog or puppy! We cannot hold onto or guarantee a specific puppy will be available without the deposit!


Please know, TOTFP will ALWAYS take the dog or puppy back! 

Your adoption fee is fully refundable if something were to happen to the puppy/dog or if our vet finds a problem during the exam and adopters then want to opt out, immediately. If once getting the dog home the adopter decides they do not want the dog within the first week then at that time the deposit will be refunded once that puppy is adopted out again minus $50.00 (which is nonrefundable but can be used towards another dog/puppy if done so within 90 days!) 

Full refunds are issued up to one week after taking the puppy or dog home (minus the 50 nonrefundable fee). Exceptions can be made for partial refunds if it's been longer than one week, and adopter wants to return. This is case by case at that point. 

Are your dogs/puppies vetted prior to adoption?

Yes, all our dogs/puppies leave up to date on vaccines, wormed at least twice, microchipped, and receive a health exam along with fecal and health certifications for travel crossing state lines. All adults are already altered unless health issues prevent this! Puppies under 4 months are adopted out on an alter contract that must be done at 4 to 6 months of age. Our vet will not do pediatric alters unless special circumstances arise. He recommends alters not be done on young puppies due to anesthesia risks but at 4 months of age or older. We can schedule this with our vet in Illinois when of age and depending on weight runs from $125 to $150.00!

Adoptions with an added alter contract are not complete until this is done. If you fail to abide by the contract, you would be in breach of our contract and could legally lose your dog or puppy.

Being we are a shelter, we give all vaccines (except for rabies) and wormer medications in house at the facility under the guidance and direction of our vet, Dr. Bill Nixon,870-269-4242, at Nixon Animal Hospital. This is common practice with almost all shelters and rescues. We order our vaccines from the same vet supply place our vet orders theirs, same exact vaccines, and have them shipped overnight on ice and immediately stored in a fridge. We are very careful and follow exact protocol for storage. We have over 25 years’ experience working with dogs and their care!

Do we guarantee your dog/puppy's health?

We do our very best to make certain every dog and puppy is healthy prior to leaving. It is impossible for ANY rescue or shelter to promise perfection. Each dog does have a thorough exam along with fecal and any age-appropriate testing needed to ensure their health. We also will always be up to date, per age, on the core vaccines. 

Once leaving Tails, adopters have 3 days to take their puppy to their vet for a health exam to be covered under our guarantee. At this exam, with your vet, if anything is found to be wrong (actual tests performed with proven diagnosis), we, at that time, will cover any medications needed. All paperwork with tests and findings must be emailed to us immediately so we can send to our vet for counsel prior to any payments/refunds being made. Tails is to be notified immediately if any issue or concern were to arise once you get your puppy/dog home. 

However, we are here for our adopters for life and will always be available to help in any way we possibly can. Once a Tails dog ALWAYS a Tails dog and we don't stop loving them just because they find a new home. If you adopt from Tails, you join the family!

Additional Transport Information

Adopters in the Illinois and Michigan area must be available to pick up their dog or puppy as soon as our van gets back into Illinois at PetSmart in Hoffman Estates unless other arrangements have been made.

The day before the scheduled transport we open a group text with all adopters and this is where you will receive transport updates, transport photos, ETA updates, etc. We begin to load up at the rescue at 9 am the day of transport and try to get back on the road by 11 am. 

Since it is a 9-hour drive back to Illinois from Arkansas, most the time pickup is between 9 pm and 10 pm. It has rarely been earlier or later (times do vary when we are running extra transports, but that information will always be provided to all adopters prior). As soon as the Van gets back on the road, we immediately update the group text with the first ETA and we will keep everyone updated during the trip as we get updates so you will know way ahead of time the exact time the van will be there for pickup.

Excessive texts or calls will not be answered as we are very busy the morning of with unloading supplies and loading dogs. We are simply unable to stay on our phones until the van is loaded up and on the road. We assure you that we will keep you updated as soon as we can. Again, please do not continue to ask times and etas once the group is open as we DO NOT and WILL NOT know until our driver updates us. 

For Vermont adopters we will make the transport arrangements with HEARTS and as soon as this is scheduled, we will then send you instructions and the exact date you will receive your dog. Our director there, Veronica, will meet the van and make a plan with you to pick up your new fur kiddo the day prior to the scheduled transport date.

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