Surrendering your family member is a difficult decision. If your animal has behavior issues, there may be solutions, such as training to help alleviate the situation.

Because the surrender rate is so high, the shelters and rescues may be full. Below is a list of resources that could help your pet find a good solution.

  • Re-Home Your Pet Yourself

    • Access your personal contacts through social media, friends, your veterinarian, etc.

    • Post cute pictures and ask everyone to ‘share’

    • List your pet on and Other options may be available

    • Be patient. This will be hard on your pet and you want to find someone who will be responsible and is financially able to provide preventive care.  

  • Is Your Animal a Specific or Mostly Specific Breed? Most breeds have their own rescue:

If the current living arrangements necessitate making other arrangements, there are several other local rescue organizations for you to contact.

Lost & Found Assistance


  • Act quickly!

  • Call the Winston-Salem Journal at (336) 727-7425 and place a lost ad.

  • Post and distribute flyers and pictures at vets’ offices, with neighbors, and at local adoption agencies.

  • If you are offering a reward, never give money until you have your pet back in your possession.

  • Immediately and regularly visit Forsyth County Animal Control located at 5570 Sturmer Park Circle, Winston-Salem, NC. For directions and hours of operation, call (336) 703-2478. Remember:  Animals not claimed within a maximum of three days may be euthanized. 

  • Visit the Animal Control website and click on “Lost and Found.” You may search for your pet, post pictures of your pet, and read additional tips.

  • And check the stray-hold list daily.

  • Check daily with PawBoost.

  • Most local TV stations have a public online bulletin board where you can post lost pets.

  • Check on Craigslist.

  • Helpful information and resources are available at Mission Reunite under “Recovery Tips.”

  • CATS ONLY: Visit If the missing pet is an indoor-only cat, it will be helpful to set humane traps near your home; contact AARF.


  • Have the pet scanned for a microchip at a vet’s office. There’s usually no charge for this service. 

  • Register the pet with Forsyth County Animal Control and click on “Lost and Found,” or call (336) 703-2478, and register with PawBoost, a free lost/found service. 

  • Call the Winston-Salem Journal at (336) 727-7425, and place a free found ad.  

  • Provide some identifying marks on the animal so that the owner would recognize their pet, leaving out some details, such as a unusual marking, the color of the collar, etc., that only the owner would know.

  • Most local TV stations have an online bulletin board where lost & found pets can be listed.

  • Post and distribute flyers and pictures at vets’ offices, with neighbors, and at local adoption agencies.

  • BE WARY of people too eager to either claim a pet, or to take in a pet if the owner is not found. 

  • If the owner of the pet is not found, see below for options on “Placing a Pet for Adoption.”

Financial Assistance

Apply for CareCredit
(800) 677-0718

American Animal Hospital Association – (1-866-4HELPETS) Through the AAHA Helping Pets Fund, veterinary care is possible for sick or injured pets even if they have been abandoned or if their owner is experiencing financial hardship.  

Bingo Pet Hospice – Supports owners of aging pets with educational, emotional and financial assistance.           

Diabetic Cats In Need

Dylan’s Heart

Emergency Boarding or Medical Aid

Fallen Angel Fund – Fallen Angel Fund is an all volunteer, 501(c)3 non-profit organization serving the Piedmont Triad and surrounding counties of North Carolina. The purpose of the Fallen Angel Fund is to pay veterinary expenses for injured and/or sick feral and stray cats that are being fed daily by a caretaker.  

Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance (FVEAP) – Provides emergency financial assistance to cat and kitten guardians who are unable to afford veterinary services to save their companion with Vaccine Associated Sarcoma (VAS), also referred to as Injection Site Sarcoma (ISS).

Handicapped Pets Foundation – The Handicapped Pets Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation dedicated to the health and well-being of elderly, disabled, and injured pets. We donate mobility equipment to pets in need.  

Handicapped Pets – The mission of is to provide products, services and support so that elderly, handicapped, and injured pets can lead happy, healthy, high-quality lives.

HandiPets Plus – HandiPets Plus drag bags, belly bands, and diapers are made to order and help keep your fur baby comfortable as they navigate the world around them. Made to fit your unique pet, not the other way around.  

Onyx and Breezy Foundation – Supports medical treatment for animals where hardship is present as well as other endeavors that benefit the welfare of animals.  

Paws 4 A Cure – Paws 4 A Cure provides financial assistance to qualified families throughout the United States who cannot afford veterinary care for their beloved furry family members without our help.  

Red Rover Relief – Founded in 1987, the mission of RedRover is to bring animals out of crisis and strengthen the bond between people and animals through emergency sheltering, disaster relief services, financial assistance and education. RedRover accomplishes its mission by engaging volunteers and supporters, collaborating with others and maximizing the use of online technology.

Rose’s Fund – At Rose's Fund we are sensitive to the fact that it takes more than love to save a life, and all animals deserve a chance. We will financially assist, to the best of our ability, pet owners and Good Samaritans who have an animal with a good prognosis for a healthy life, but are at a financial loss.

Spay USA – North Shore Animal League America's SpayUSA is a nationwide network and referral service for affordable spay/neuter. Our mission is to end the suffering of innocent dogs and cats by reducing the number of unwanted births.

The Big Hearts Fund – Financial assistance for the diagnosis and treatment of canine and feline heart disease.

The Binky Foundation – The Binky Foundation is a private charitable organization dedicated to the protection of domestic and wild animals and the protection and expansion of their habitats. At The Binky Foundation we recognize that the resources for starting an initiative are often the hardest to obtain. Thus, we are committed to assisting individuals and organizations in taking those critical initial steps toward protecting animals and their habitats.

The Magic Bullet Fund – Cancer treatment. Dogs only    

The Mosby Foundation – The Mosby Foundation is organized exclusively for charitable purposes, to assist in the care of critically sick, injured, abused and neglected dogs through financial support and public education.  

The Pet Fund – The Pet Fund is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit association that provides financial assistance to owners of domestic animals who need urgent veterinary care. Often animals are put down or suffer needlessly because their owners cannot afford expensive surgery or emergency vet visits. Companion animal owners must often make the difficult decision to put an animal down or neglect urgent medical needs because of the costs involved. The purpose of the Pet Fund is to work towards a future where decisions about companion animal medical care need never be made on the basis of cost.

The Sergei Foundation – The Sergei Foundation, Inc. is a North Carolina non-profit organization (501c3) that provides veterinary financial aid to those families who cannot afford emergency care when there's no place else to turn.      

Trio Animal Foundation – Trio Animal Foundation is a 501(c)3 charitable organization that assists shelters, rescues and individuals by paying the medical bills of homeless pets.

Unchain Forsyth - Unchain Forsyth builds fences for dogs that have lived their lives at the end of a chain. Low-income candidates must meet certain requirements including having a current rabies vaccination for their dog, having the dog spayed or neutered and agreeing to never chain the dog again.

Unchain Winston - UNchain Winston provides compassionate and non-judgmental assistance to improve the welfare of dogs living with unending “chaining” and neglect in Forsyth County. Primary services including building free fences for qualified families, building and distributing free dog-houses, repairing existing fences, offering free or low-cost spay/neuter and vaccinations, veterinary care, and loaning portable dog pens for fostering and rescue. (336) 365-8291



MYTH: My pet will get fat and lazy.

FACT: The truth is that most pets get fat and lazy because their owners feed them too much and don’t give them enough exercise.

MYTH: It’s better to have one litter first.

FACT: Medical evidence indicates just the opposite. In fact, the evidence shows that females spayed before their first heat cycle are typically healthier. Check with your veterinarian about the appropriate time for these procedures.

MYTH: My children should experience the miracle of birth.

FACT: Even if children are able to see a pet give birth — which is unlikely since it usually occurs at night and in seclusion — the lesson they will really learn is that animals can be created and discarded as it suits adults. Instead, it should be explained to children that the real miracle is life, and that preventing the birth of some pets can save the lives of others.

MYTH: But my pet is a purebred.

FACT: So is at least one out of every four pets brought to animal shelters around the country. There are just too many dogs and cats — mixed breed and purebred.

MYTH: I want my dog to be protective.

FACT: Spaying or neutering does not affect a dog’s natural instinct to protect home and family. A dog’s personality is formed more by genetics and environment than by sex hormones.

MYTH: But my dog (or cat) is so special, I want a puppy (or kitten) just like her.

FACT: A dog or cat may be a great pet, but that does not mean her offspring will be a carbon copy. Professional animal breeders who follow generations of bloodlines can’t guarantee they will get just what they want out of a particular litter. A pet owner’s chances are even slimmer. In fact, an entire litter of puppies or kittens might receive all of a pet’s (and her mate’s) worst characteristics.

MYTH: It’s too expensive to have my pet spayed or neutered.

FACT: The cost of spaying or neutering depends on the sex, size and age of the pet, your veterinarian’s fees, and a number of other variables. But whatever the actual price, spay or neuter surgery is a one-time cost — a relatively small cost when compared to all the benefits. It’s a bargain compared to the cost of having a litter and ensuring the health of the mother and litter; two months of pregnancy and another two months until the litter is weaned can add up to significant food costs and veterinary bills if complications develop. Most importantly, it’s a very small price to pay for the health of your pet and the prevention of the births of more unwanted pets.

MYTH: I’ll find good homes for all the puppies and kittens.

FACT: You may find homes for all of your pet’s litter. But each home you find means one less home for the dogs and cats in shelters who need good homes. Also, in less than one year’s time, each of your pet’s offspring may have his or her own litter, adding even more animals to the population. The problem of pet overpopulation is created and perpetuated one litter at a time.

(Source: The Humane Society of the United States)

Pet Food Pantries

311 Harvey Street, WS 27103
Call for availability: (336) 768-7387

Forsyth Humane Society
You can sign up for distribution at the site you plan to collect pet food from.
Requirements vary by site, however, you will be able to sign up at any of the above locations with the following:

  1. A social security card (SSA car or printout of the SS# or TIN card)

  2. A photo ID (Driver’s License, State ID Card, Employee ID Card or US Passport)

  3. Address verification (current bill or lease agreement)

Pet Food Distribution Sites

Ardmore United Methodist Church
Bob Martin Hall, 630 S. Hawthorne Road, WS, 27103
First & Third Thursday, 5:15 pm

Bridges Church, Shattalon Church of Christ
5490 Shattalon Drive, WS 27106
Fourth Friday, 9:00-11:00 am; 6:00-7:30 pm

Fuzzy Friends Pet Food Pantry
St. Anne’s Episcopal Church                                                                                                                            
2690 Fairlawn Drive, Winston-Salem, NC 27106
2nd & 3rd Friday, 10:30 am-12:00 pm                                                                                                        
1st & 4th Saturday, 10:00 am-12:30 pm

Holy Cross Catholic Church - Education Bldg
616 S. Cherry St., Kernersville, NC 27284
Third Thursday, 10:00-11:00 am

Love Community Development
3980 N. Liberty St., Winston-Salem, NC 27105
Every Monday, Wednesday & Friday, 1:00-3:00 pm

Triad Dream Center
3650-G Patterson Ave., WS 27105
First & Third Thursday, 9:00 am-12:00 pm

Dog Resources


We recommend obedience training for all dogs. Working with your dog on basic obedience is a great way to bond and make your dog a better family member.

This is not a comprehensive list of dog trainers in Winston-Salem.  Nor does AARF affiliate with all of these.

Vickie Luke, Canine Behaviorist
(336) 817-9882

Winston Salem Dog Training Club
3800 Bethania Station Road, Winston-Salem, NC 27106
(336) 924-4211

Jim Hodges Dog Training
(336) 945-3232

Just Dog Academy
Trainer: June Guido
(417) 545-1168

Highland Canine Dog Training
Trainer: Gabriella Fred
(336) 406-2919

Elite Training
(336) 946-6293


Tanglewood Park
4061 Clemmons Rd, Clemmons, NC 27012

Washington Park
1490 S Broad St, Winston-Salem, NC 27127

Jamison Park Dog Park
285 Meadowlark Dr, Winston-Salem, NC 27106

Happy Hounds at Horizon Park (Dogs must be on leash)
2820 Memorial Industrial School Rd

Kernersville Dog Park at Fourth of July Park
702 W Mountain St, Kernersville NC 27284

Southwest Park Dog Park
6309 SW Park Dr., Greensboro, NC 27405

Stephen M. Hussey BarkPark at Country Park
3905 Nathanael Green Dr., Greensboro, NC 27455

LeBauer Park
208 N. Davie St., Greensboro, NC 27401

Cat Resources

20180420-kitty foster-028.jpg

The Litter Box Survival Guide
(from the animal humane society)

Preventing Inappropriate Elimination.

One thing is for sure: it is much easier to prevent litter box problems than it is to fix them. While most cats use their boxes without difficulty, any cat can struggle if certain conditions are not met. The following guidelines can get your new cat off to the right start:

1. Take kitty to the vet. Make sure there are no underlying physical issues.

2. Clean the box. If one factor contributes to the bulk of litter box problems, it is poor hygiene. You must clean your cat’s litter boxes at least once every day—ideally twice. Imagine how you would feel if the one toilet in your home flushed only once a week! Keeping your tools (rake, bags, twist-ties, etc.) handy in a nearby bucket or caddy will enable you to clean your cat’s litter boxes in less than 30 seconds.

3. One box per cat, plus one. Note that we said “litter boxes.” Some cats will urinate in one box and defecate in another…and choose an alternate surface if a second isn’t available. If you have a multi-cat household, it is critical that the boxes be spread out around the home, particularly if there is any tension between the cats. Some people say, “I don’t have room for another box;” if this is true, they probably don’t have room for another cat. Using a larger-size box can help set them up for success.

4. No switching! Once you find a litter that your cat likes, stick with it. Don’t pick another kind simply because it’s on sale this week. Cats are very sensitive to the feel and scent of their litter and the result of a sudden switch can be urine and feces all over your floor. Buying the preferred litter in bulk can save some of the cost and make sure that plenty is available to you.

5. No punishment. If your cat has an accident, don’t react: no yelling, no scolding, no spanking, and be sure not to pick the cat up and set him in the box. These things will likely teach him to associate toileting with feeling scared, making him more likely to toilet in secret. Instead of punishing, focus on what might be causing your cat to reject the box.

6. Get free help right away. If your cat is soiling outside of the box, call the Behavior Helpline immediately at (763) 489-2202. Don’t wait weeks, months or longer in hopes that the behavior will go away: it might simply get worse.

Caring for Neonatal Kittens (Alley Cat Allies)

Additional Resources

Can’t afford a dog house? A partnership between animal rescue organizations and the WS/FC Schools’ Career Center carpentry students, the “Houses for Hounds” program provides dog houses to low-income families. Visit the Animal Control website, select “Special Programs,” and click on “Houses for Hounds,” or call (336) 703-2480 Monday through Friday during regular business hours.   

Involved in a domestic violence situation? Call Safe Haven Family Services Inc. at (336) 723-8125 to arrange free, temporary foster care for your pets, or visit the Animal Control website, select “Special Programs,” and click on “Safe Haven” for more information.

Can’t afford to feed your pet? The AniMeals program offers free pet food for the dogs and cats of elderly, disabled or lower income residents of Forsyth County. If you, or someone you know, needs assistance, please visit the Animal Control website, select “Special Programs,”  and click on “AniMeals” for more information, to print an application, or to apply online.

Need help with a feral (“wild” or unsocialized) cat? Several area groups offer resources for humane trapping, and low-cost or free spay/neuter. Please note that these groups are generally unable to relocate cats or place these cats in homes. Forgotten Felines of Forsyth (FFF), (336) 602-2887; Feral Cat Assistance Program (FCAP), (336) 378-0878; 4 Paws Pet Foundation, (336) 778-0582.

Have found sick or injured wildlife? Contact Wildlife Emergency and Rescue at (336) 785-0912
Wildlife Rehabilitators in NC: Search the Member List for your county

Concerned about an animal that is being abused or neglected, or that does not have adequate food, water and shelter? Call Animal Control complaint and investigations at (336) 703-2490.

Need help with a cat up a tree, a dog in a drain pipe, etc.? Contact the Winston-Salem Rescue Squad Technical Animal Rescue Team. For emergency situations requiring an immediate response, call pager number (336) 806-0755. For general questions, call (336) 767-6262.

Have an after-hours emergency? When most veterinary offices are closed, the after-hours emergency vet is open. Carolina Vet Specialists (CVS) is located at 1600 Hanes Mall Blvd. (336) 896-0902.