Where to adopt a dog in the UAE, from rescue groups to government shelters

Dogs up for adoption during The Pet Shop adoption day held at the Pet Shop at DIP in Dubai. Pawan Singh / The National

August 26 is International Dog Day.

What better way to celebrate than by visiting a local shelter to foster or adopt?

You are reading: Where to adopt a dog in the UAE, from rescue groups to government shelters

For those who are unsure about the process, it often involves filling out paperwork, being interviewed and, in some cases, having your home checked. The pet being adopted will be spayed or neutered, fully vaccinated, dewormed and microchipped, depending on its age.

However, if you’re unable to take in a dog, there are still other ways to help including donating time or helping raise awareness for animals in need. Here’s a list of dog rescue groups and organisations in the UAE.

K9 Friends

K9 Friends was started in 1989 by a group of 12 friends in Dubai. Its current shelter has been operational since 2009; since the organisation’s inception, it has helped to rehome more than 7,900 dogs. It has weekly adoption days.

More information is available at

Animals and Us

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The shelter in Fujairah was founded in 2006 by Michelle Francis and has almost 400 rescue dogs under its care. It is run by a group of volunteers and holds adoption days in Dubai.

More information is available at

Stray Dogs Centre

Founded by Amirah Williams in 2013, Stray Dogs Centre in Umm Al Quwain is the largest privately run dog rescue shelter in the UAE and has support from the emirate’s royal family. It currently has more than 850 dogs under its care.

More information is available at

House of Hounds

The group takes in stray, neglected, abandoned and surrendered Salukis and other sighthound breeds such as greyhounds, whippets and Saluki mixes. The centre also occasionally has other breeds in its care.

More information is available at

RAK Animal Welfare Centre

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The shelter, which is supported by the government of Ras Al Khaimah and opened in 2010, looks to rehome socialised, trained and healthy dogs. The centre has a site in Al Jazira, which is open from Thursday to Tuesday, from 9am to 6pm.

More information is available at

Abu Dhabi Animal Shelter

The Abu Dhabi Animal Shelter is managed by Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital and has been operational since 2010. All dogs are spayed or neutered, vaccinated, microchipped and treated for fleas and worms before going up for adoption. Those looking for a specific breed can also use the “Wish a Pet” section of the website to fill out a form, in case that specific breed becomes available.

More information is available at

Sharjah Cats and Dog Shelter

The Sharjah Cats and Dogs Shelter is a non-profit that rescues abandoned pets and finds them homes. It has a physical location on Airport Road in Muzairah and is open to walk-in visitors from Monday to Thursday, 8am to 3pm and Sunday 2pm to 6pm. It is closed on Fridays and Saturdays. All pets are spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped.

More information is available at

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