35 years in Saving Dogs

Why our Rescue & Adoption Information

 Our mission... is to find loving homes for shelties, collies and other small herding breeds that have become homeless through no fault of their own. We want to educate families in the care and well-being of their pets and if the need arises, to help those families maintain care and ownership of their beloved herders in a temporary crisis.

Most Breeds have their own Rescue.   

Coastal Sheltie Rescue + knows our breeds.  We know their quirks, their common illnesses, their behavior, and their needs.   Whenever a Sheltie or other herding dog must be rehomed, Sheltie Rescue is the BEST CHOICE.    We give the best breed specific care, and we find the best breed specific homes.

When a dog comes into our program, they start by visiting our Veterinarian.  Each of our dogs are fully vetted, including all shots, spayed/neutered, HW tested and/or treated, de-wormed, micro-chipped, groomed.  We treat any illness or injury the dog has.  

Once the dog is healthy, it goes into a foster home, and lives as a member of the family; until the perfect home is found and approved. 


What We Expect From Adopters

We consider only applicants who want a dog as a member of the family, meaning that the dog will spend its time where the family is and not be kept

outside or away from the family all the time.

We favor applicants with yards of secure, physical fencing for most (but not necessarily all) of our Herders. However, for puppies and all young dogs, a fence is required. Some adult or senior dogs can do well in homes with no fenced yard if the family is willing to take the dog for frequent walks -on leash, of course. 

We do NOT place dogs in homes with invisible, electronic, or electric fences or outdoor kennels.

We expect adopters to provide plenty of exercise and mental stimulation for a dog. Most herding dogs are active dogs that need to run and play or

have a “job”; they are not meant to be couch potatoes.

We do NOT place dogs in homes that have intact pets (unless the dog is being actively shown in conformation classes or there is a medical reason

for remaining intact) or pets that are not up to date on vaccinations.

We are usually reluctant to place a rescued Member of the Herding Group in a family with children under the age of four or five. Rescue dogs often

have difficult or completely unknown pasts, and we can't accept the risk that a child might be hurt. In addition, Shelties are herding dogs and may

herd small children. We will consider placing a dog that we know loves children with a family with young children. Our foster process includes this


Other requirements in our adoption contract include the following:

The dog may never be allowed off a leash outdoors unless it is in a secure, physically fenced area.

The dog must be kept on heartworm preventative all year.

The dog is never to be left outside when you are not home.

The dog must wear ID tags, including the CSR+ tag, always.

If the dog cannot be kept for any reason, it must be returned to CSR+.

Below is a list of things that can cause an application to be denied:

If you or anyone in your home has been found guilty of animal cruelty or has a pending charge of animal cruelty.

If you do not keep your pet's vaccinations and preventatives current, you will not be considered for adoption.

If you do not give your veterinarian permission to discuss your pet records with us, you will not be considered for adoption.

If you plan on using an "invisible" fence, you will not be considered for adoption. These types of fences are not safe, and shelties have a high

tolerance for pain.

If you plan on keeping your dog as an "outside dog", you will not be considered for adoption.

If you are not ready to commit to a dog for the rest of its life, you will not be considered for adoption.

What You Can Expect From Us

Every dog that comes into CSR+ is placed with an experienced Foster Provider for at least two weeks up to several months, depending on the dog's

needs and issues.

While in foster care, the dog is carefully evaluated to determine any health or behavior problems.

By the time the dog is ready for adoption, it will have had all needed vet care at CSR+ expense. The dog will be:

Spayed or neutered, unless it is a puppy less than six month of age. In that case, the puppy will be adopted with a spay/neuter contract.

Up-to-date on rabies, distemper, parvo, and other appropriate vaccines.

Tested for heartworm, and various other parasites and, if positive, treated for any of     these.

          Provided with heartworm preventative.

          Bathed and groomed.

          Given a professional dental cleaning, if needed.

The dog will have been tested to determine how well it interacts with other dogs, cats, and children of various ages.

If the dog shows aggressive behavior or has a biting history, it will not be placed for adoption.

The dog will be given remedial housetraining, if needed.

The dog’s foster provider will leash train it and provide a start on training in other basic commands.

As complete a medical history as possible will be given to adopter.

As complete an evaluation of the dog’s temperament as possible will be given to adopter. 

Question:   Do you have a shelter where I can see all the dogs you have available for adoption?

A:  No. Each of our dogs is placed in an appropriate foster home. Our foster homes are all over Virginia with a few in Maryland. You can see photos and

descriptions of our dogs on the website page entitled, “Adopt.” We cannot, however, arrange for you to meet a particular dog until you have

submitted an application, had your home visit, and been informed by the Adoption Coordinator that you have been approved to adopt.

Q:  Where do the dogs come from that you take into your rescue organization?

A:  Most are surrendered by owners who can no longer care for them. Some are turned in by breeders who are leaving their businesses or retiring their

breeding dogs. Some are shelter dogs that may have been strays or turned in by owners.

Q:  How long will it take to adopt a Coastal dog?

A:  Since CSR+ is made up exclusively of volunteers, many with full time jobs and families in addition to their volunteer work, the process of reviewing

applications, completing home visits, calling references, and communicating with foster providers can take several weeks. If your needs and preferences are

very specific, finding a good match can take months. Sometimes a dog that looks like a perfect match for you has some medical or behavioral issues that

must be addressed before adoption. (Scheduling and recovery from a simple spay, dewclaw removal and dental, for example, can delay adoption by several

weeks.) Remember that we work with the dogs we get; we do not go out and "look for" a dog for you. The wait for a dog may be long, or it may be short,

depending on what Dogs we have.

Q:  I don’t live in Virginia. Am I eligible to adopt a dog from Coastal Sheltie Rescue +?

A:  We prefer to adopt to applicants in Virginia and close-in areas of neighboring states (West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia). If you

don't live in our area, you should look into a Sheltie, Collie or Herding Group rescue group that is closer to you. For our harder-to-place dogs, we will

consider applicants farther away. A home visit can be arranged with a rescue organization near you. You would have to travel to the dog’s foster home to

meet him/her. 

Q:  What if we adopt a dog and it just doesn’t fit into our family for some reason?

A:  You can return the dog to CSR+ during the 3 days after the adoption and receive a full refund of your adoption fee minus the $75.00 deposit. After the initial 3 days, we

will always take the dog back, but the adoption fee is not returned. If you cannot keep the dog for any reason, it must come back to CSR+

Q:  My family has never had a dog before. Would a Herder be a good “starter” dog for us?

A:  It depends. Please read up on the breed and on positive dog training first. Read our page about the Herders. A dog in the 4-8-year-old range that is

fully housetrained, and leash trained, past the chewing and destructive stage, and with some basic training in good house manners would be best. We are

careful to match “easy” dogs with inexperienced families. Our foster providers can provide plenty of advice to adoptive families throughout the dog’s life,

and we can recommend classes that educate both dog and handler.

Q:  We really want a young dog that is no more than 2 or 3 years old, but we don’t have a fenced yard. Would you place a young dog with us?

A:  We strongly favor households with securely fenced yards for young dogs, although certain young dogs are fine with only leash walking. Much depends

on the dog’s energy level and temperament and on the applicant’s ability and willingness to provide exercise in other ways-as a jogging partner, in agility

training, etc. all herding dogs need a LOT of exercise to stay healthy.

Q:  Everyone in our house is away from home at least 7-8 hours every day. Do you have a dog that might be right for us?

A:  Shelties, Collie and most herders, need lots of mental and physical exercise, and they are usually very social. A dog in the 5-9-year-old range with a low

or moderate energy level would likely work best for you, assuming you can give the dog plenty of exercise and attention before and after work. An older

dog could work well for you if you have a dog walker come in for a midday "out." Young dogs should not be left alone for long hours.

Our adoption fees are as follows:

 For Sheltie's, Collies and Doodles

  • Less than 4 years of age – $450 ($350 is tax deductible)
  • 5 through 7 years of age – $400 ($250 is tax deductible)
  • 8 to 10 years and older – $300 ($275 is tax deductible)
  • 11 years and older – $175 ($150 is tax deductible)
  • For Mixed Breeds or other small herding dogs
  • Less than 4 years of age – $350 ($350 is tax deductible)
  • 4 through 9 years of age – $250 ($250 is tax deductible)
  • 9 years and older – $150 ($150 is tax deductible)

We spend three times more in veterinary services than we collect in adoption fees. The average per dog is about $950. This amount does

not include the room, food, evaluation, training, and especially the love that our volunteer foster homes provide - free of charge. So, our

adoption fees cover only a small part of the expenses incurred in rehoming our Herders. We rely heavily on donations and on

fundraising events.

We do not arrange payment plans. We accept cash, checks or major credit cards (5% fee added for credit cards) for adoption fees.

These adoption fees include spay or neuter, routine shots, heartworm check and preventative care.

Potential adopter fills out application completely and e-mails it to:


After you submit your application, we will contact your veterinarian to verify that your current pets are up to date on all vaccinations and

preventatives. Please inform your veterinarian that we will be calling and provide them with permission to discuss your pets’ records with us. If they

are not, then your application will be automatically denied.

Once your veterinarian confirms vaccinations and preventatives, we will contact you to discuss your expectations and to answer any questions you

might have about the adoption process.

After that a volunteer schedules a home visit with the applicant if we have a dog that might match. At this visit, all family members and household

pets must be present. The volunteer answers questions, shares information about our dogs, evaluates security of fencing, if any, looks for any dog

hazards, checks number and steepness of stairs, and discusses what the family is looking for in a herder, age, and temperament preferences the

applicant may have.

Adoption Coordinator compiles a list of all approved adopters and sends it to all Foster Care Providers on a regular basis.

Each Foster Provider reviews applications and home visit reports and will contact an applicant who looks like a good match for that foster dog. 

If an applicant is interested in the dog described by the foster provider, a meeting is arranged so the entire family can meet the dog-either at the

foster home or the applicant’s home. We are careful to show the dog where he/she is most comfortable.

If all parties agree that the match is a good one, an adoption contract is signed, and the adoption fee is paid to CSR+. You will be required to

complete an adoption contract at the time of adoption.

We reserve the right to refuse an applicant if, in our judgment, the home situation is not compatible with the needs of a sheltie, collie, or

other herding breed; or if the breed is not suitable for the applicant.

Here is how to get in touch with us.  We look forward to hearing from you!

Email us at:     Coastalsheltierescue@gmail.com 

Coastal Sheltie Rescue

Po Box 56162

Virginia Beach, VA 23456 

804-552-1884 9am to 5pm M-Sat.   We will try and return your call within 24 hours during weekdays.