Best Dog Rescues in Florida [10 Places to Visit for Adoption]

It’s such an amazing feeling to get awakened every morning by soft sniffs and licks. It’s an experience you’ll miss, remembering the dog you had during childhood. 

The good news is, once you’re set and ready to welcome a new Fido, you won’t have a hard time searching for the right place to get them from. In Florida, many dog rescue centers are excited to show their dogs to prospective adopters. 

In no time, you’ll finally live in the new moments with a dog on your side. And, to get you started in finding the best dog rescues in Florida, I’ve listed the highly recommended ones, including their details for contacting purposes. 

10 Best Dog Rescues in Florida

1. Big Hearts for Big Dogs Rescue

Big Hearts for Big Dogs Rescue is composed of a small group committed to focusing on the welfare of dogs of massive sizes. According to a study, medium to large Fidos are more likely to be returned to a shelter or dog rescue than small pooches. 

Now, with the presence of these advocates, South Florida is seeing a new kind of hope for the often ignored big dogs. 

Often, people would think that the bigger the size of the dog, the more responsibility that comes with them. Though it’s partially true, it’s not always the case. 

You can have a small dog with a high-maintenance coat, and that’ll take them longer for grooming compared to a Bullmastiff, that’s low in shedding. 

It’s time to break the stereotypes and experience how amazing big dogs are. Get in touch with BHBD and check their available adoptable pets. You can also give a one-time or regular donation or consider fostering if you’re not ready for the total commitment.

How to contact them:

Website: Big Hearts for Big Dogs Rescue

Address: 12051 SW 131st Ave, Miami, FL 33186, USA

Phone: 239-200-1150

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

2. Big Dog Ranch Rescue

Another rescue center that mainly focuses on saving big dogs from unfortunate situations is the Big Dog Ranch Rescue. All the canines they take get to experience a life of freedom on their 33-acre campus.

Here, they receive proper treatment and everything necessary to get them rehabilitated. Ultimately, these dogs are set out to be rehomed with compatible families and interested individuals. 

In the US, BDRR is currently the largest cage-free dog rescue sanctuary. They also are against euthanasia regardless if the pet is overly sickly. 

Together with the community, you can make a difference in the lives of these sweet four-legged companions. Aside from adoption, you can participate in their “Shop For a Cause” program or donate an amount to support their mission further. 

How to contact them:

Website: Big Dog Ranch Rescue

Address: 14444 Okeechobee Boulevard, Loxahatchee Groves, FL 33470

Phone: 561-791-6465

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook and Instagram

3. Abandoned Pet Rescue

Hailed to be one of the largest no-kill animal rescues in South Florida, Abandoned Pet Rescue continues its outstanding image as a legitimate rescuer. Over the past decade, around 6,800 animals have received proper quality care. 

As a qualified non-profit charity, APR relies on the community and volunteer efforts. They accept donations, so each cat and dog rescue in their care is provided with their basic needs and essential medical treatments. 

Both are important as they won’t be suitable for adoption if they aren’t rehabilitated. 

If you don’t know yet what dog to adopt, their adoption counselors will help you. They’re available by appointment only, or you can also scan through the available dogs for adoption. 

How to contact them:

Website: Abandoned Pet Rescue

Address: 1137 NE 9th Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL, United States, Florida

Phone: 954-728-9010

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

4. Elizabeth’s Animal Rescue & Sanctuary

 Otherwise known as EARS, this rescue and sanctuary welcome any dog in need. Whether abandoned, abused, or unwanted, there’s always a spot for any Fido. 

At EARS, all volunteers open their hearts to each dog and work hard to get them back to their happy senses. Admittingly, most dogs have experienced trauma, but with proper care and lots of love, they’re gradually becoming friendlier. 

Since this is an organization that’s not government-funded, the effort they do is fueled through monetary or physical donations. Every time their dog is adopted, they also receive adoption fees which go directly to the welfare of the animals under their care. 

If you live around Odessa, this is a dog rescue worth visiting. 

How to contact them:

Website: Elizabeth’s Animal Rescue & Sanctuary

Address: 1644 Altamont Lane, Odessa, FL 33556

Phone: 813-355-6285

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook and Instagram

5. Akita Rescue Society of Florida

There’s also a breed-specific dog rescue in Florida. If you’re particularly into the Akita breed, you have so much luck coming across this amazing rescue group.

ARSF doesn’t just serve the state of Florida; its noble effort also reaches other places such as Georgia, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Carolina, and Louisiana. 

The primary mission they act upon is to reduce the number of unwanted, abused, or neglected Akitas in the areas mentioned. They have 4 open lines to cater to those interested in learning about training and health issues regarding the Akita breed.

To aid their adopters and ensure that the relationship between them and their Akitas becomes truly successful, ARSF also offers Canine Good Citizenship classes at the cost of $5 only. 

On top of that, perhaps a controversial one, they don’t charge adoption fees. They’ve stated their reasons comprehensively on their web page. 

How to contact them:

Website: Akita Rescue Society of Florida

Address: 2364 Emerson St., Jacksonville, FL 32207

Phone: 904-302-3980

6. Pet Rescue by Judy

Pet Rescue by Judy started in 1986. It was when an adoption event took place, and her husband Tim laid his eyes on an Old English Sheepdog that was unfortunately not brought home by any adopter. 

Knowing what the dog’s fate would be, possibly getting euthanized, Tim and Judy decided to bring the canine home. From there, countless more pets, especially dogs, have been given the hope they need during their darkest times. 

PRJ is an animal rescue that grew out of their passion. Until now, they remain to be a no-kill facility. All dogs and other animals are provided with the best medical care they need for as long as the resources last. 

That’s why, in order to make more difference in the lives of these sweet companions, it’s encouraged to donate or become a foster parent for any of PRJ’s pets. 

They’re currently open by appointment, so schedule it now and start experiencing a transformed life with a Fido. 

How to contact them:

Website: Pet Rescue by Judy

Address: 401 South Laurel Avenue, Sanford, FL 32771

Phone: 407-302-4497

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook and Instagram

7. Pet Pal Animal Shelter

There surely are at least a few dogs that are getting euthanized each day. This could be driven due to reasons such as lack of space, time limitations, lack of training, or severe injuries or medical problems. 

Thankfully, those that are in line for this mercy-killing method are gradually being saved by Pet Pal Animal Shelter. 

The mission involves not just rescuing those who need saving but as well as educating the public about responsible pet ownership. It’s also part of their cause to inform the community about the pet overpopulation crisis. Hence sterilizing their pets is recommended to avoid unwanted pregnancies. 

If you want help, you can become one of their volunteers. You can also help them raise some money for their advocacy by buying at their thrift shop or donating. 

How to contact them:

Website: Pet Pal Animal Shelter

Address: 405 22nd Street South, Saint Petersburg, FL, United States, Florida

Phone: 727-328-7738

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram

8. Saving Sage

It’s always great to have a pooch in your house, especially if your family are dog people. At Saving Sage, they’ll surely have one that suits your preferences and lifestyle. 

This foundation serves the South of Florida. They’re always ready for action as they spring to urgent situations where dogs and other animals need protection from abuse or unfortunate circumstances. 

They believe that changing the world starts within the community. That’s why they conduct youth educational programs which tackle pet overpopulation, assist in providing microchip scanners, and work with the police to reunite lost pets with their owners. 

Of course, these things can’t be done without you. Be their sponsor, volunteer, foster, or adopter. There are a lot of ways to lend a helping hand. No matter how big or small you can contribute, it’s enough to make an impact.

How to contact them:

Website: Saving Sage

Address: 8736 W Commercial Blvd Lauderhill, FL 33351

Phone: 954-530-1508

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook and YouTube

9. Heidi’s Legacy Dog Rescue

Heidi’s Legacy Dog Rescue was inspired by a German Shepherd named Heidi. Her original owners abandoned her, and after she arrived to be given proper care, Heidi passed away. 

From there, the HLDR became an established dog rescue in Florida. They’ve been operating since 2002 as an all-breed refuge of all unwanted, neglected, abandoned, and abused animals. 

Each dog that arrives in this sanctuary undergoes around 14 days of quarantine. Within that period, they’re provided with the best treatment, especially concerning their medical and behavioral needs. 

Rest assured, it’s going to be a smooth transition should you adopt a dog from this place. It’s encouraged to stay committed and continue their socialization training to keep them happy and live their lives as healthy and normal dogs. 

How to contact them:

Website: Heidi’s Legacy Dog Rescue

Address: 3690 W Gandy Blvd #416, Tampa FL 33611

Email: [email protected]

10. Safe Animal Shelter

Both cats and dogs provide fantastic companionship to anyone who’s looking to have a pet. At Safe Animal Shelter, you’ll meet many of them, patiently waiting to be noticed by prospective adopters. 

Since they receive no government funding, their objectives which include rescue missions and rehabilitation, are made possible only through your donations. 

So far, around 372 dogs have been brought into this shelter this 2022, and 299 have been placed. You might be the next person to share a success story, so don’t hesitate to adopt if you have all the capacity to do so. 

You can also donate or get involved through fostering or volunteering.

How to contact them:

Website: Safe Animal Shelter

Address: 2913 County Road 220, Middleburg, FL, United States, Florida

Phone: 904-375-9122

Email: [email protected]

You may also reach out through their social media: Facebook and Instagram

How Much Would It Cost to Adopt a Dog in Florida?

The cost to adopt a dog in Florida usually goes anywhere between $100 to $300. You can save a lot if you think the most suitable dog rescue for your family is a senior or adult dog. Meanwhile, if you gravitate towards a puppy, then you have to expect to pay a higher fee. 

This is just the standard adoption cost range. Different areas charge different fees, depending on the cost of their living. 

Is It Worth Adopting a Dog Rescue From Florida?

It’s certainly worth adopting a dog from Florida if you live in that state. After all, making a huge impact starts within your area. With several dog rescues that shelter thousands of dogs, your individual effort to adopt is already an applauded move.

This is especially so since many societal issues arise concerning animal treatment and dog ownership.