We've put together an excellent list of dog, cat, and other pet rescues and shelters in Nashville, TN - Updated for 2023!
It's no secret that Music City continues to be one of the most pet-friendly towns in the country! Nashville is known for its incredible culture, live music, and ridiculously delicious food scene. It seems like Nashville is consistently recognized as one of the best places to live year after year. The only thing better than living, working, and playing in Nashville, is doing it all with a furry buddy or scaley, bug-eating best friend by your side. There are always adventures to be had when you check out one of Nashville's awesome dog parks or the long list of super fun, dog-friendly restaurants, bars, and breweries. And if you don't currently have a fuzzy, scruffy, fluffy, scaley, or slimy best friend but are looking to add one to your life, that's no problem! Nashville is also host to some great pet rescues, shelters, and adoption facilities.
Deciding to adopt or bring a new pet into the family is definitely not something to be done on a whim. You want to make sure that you can provide your new pet with everything they need to have the highest quality of life. If you've made it this far, it's likely that you've already given it a lot of thought and are ready to welcome that new dog, cat, rodent, reptile, fish, bird, or other little friends into your life! Once you're ready to adopt, the next step will be choosing where you adopt from.
Some people prefer to go through breeders or pet stores, but you might also consider adopting from a shelter or rescue. There are some amazing rescues and shelters in Nashville that do incredible work and provide care to pets that haven't had an easy start to their lives. Luckily, these animal shelters and rescues help their pets to find forever homes, so the second chapter of their lives is better than the first! And once you have your new best friend safe at home, you'll want to find them the best, most compassionate care possible. With Local Pet Care, you'll be able to check out all of Nashville's top pet care pros and find the perfect match for you and your new pet!
Nashville Animal Shelters, Rescues, and Adoption Centers
The Nashville Humane Association (NHA) is one of Nashville's oldest and largest animal rescues. Incorporated in 1946, the NHA is committed to serving the community by providing valuable resources for pets in need, pet adoption, and pet care. The Nashville Humane Association hosts events like a Dog Day Festival, a 5k Mutt Strutt, and many other events that raise awareness and resources for vulnerable pets in need. They also have some great volunteer opportunities if you are interested in spending time with animals.
Proverbs 12:10 Animal Rescue is a 501c3 charitable organization that is run primarily by volunteers. Proverbs 12:10 Animal Rescue ensures that every animal they rescue is given the most thorough and compassionate care possible. They try to cover the cost of all medical care and training when possible. Along with adoption opportunities, they are also always looking for help fostering pets and volunteering with the shelter.
Agape Animal Rescue provides temporary shelter to dogs waiting for their forever homes. Agape provides training and care through their foster program while working to match each dog with their perfect family.
Snooty Giggles is a non-profit rescue that supports dogs of all breeds, sizes, and ages. They provide medical care, hospice care, and any other type of specialized care that animals need to live out their lives in the best way possible. Snooty Giggles also works to find homes for guinea pigs, reptiles, chinchillas, rabbits, and pretty much any other species that need help.
Founded in 2005, Nashville Cat Rescue has found homes for more than 11,000 cats. Their mission is to rescue cats and kittens from Middle Tennessee area streets, high-kill shelters, and neglectful or abusive homes. The goal is to find a loving forever home for every cat and kitten they take in.
East Community Action Network(C.A.N.) is a non-profit organization that focuses on animal welfare and responsible pet ownership. Without a physical location, they home animals in foster care until they can be placed in forever homes. They also provide basic supplies, vetting, medications, and training.
Big Fluffy Dog Rescue is a non-profit organization that focuses on helping, you guessed it, big fluffy dogs! They work primarily with giant breed mixed breed dogs in need. They try to find loving homes for every dog that comes to the Big Fluffy Dog Rescue, regardless of how the dog came to be there.
Music City Animal Rescue is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that rescues abandoned, abused, or neglected animals in and around the Middle Tennessee area. They are a foster-based home network that provides pets with dedicated care until they can be placed in a forever home.
Love at First Sight! is a puppy and kitten adoption center in Nashville. They have adopted over 8,500 pets to loving homes and families in Nashville since they originated. The majority of the pets that come to Love At First Sight! are from families around the Nashville area with unexpected litters and local animal shelters that assist with the overflow of puppy and kitten litters.
Metro Animal Care and Control is committed to delivering humane and responsive animal care and control services to Nashville-Davidson County residents and animals. They work with individuals and organizations across Nashville to help domestic animals find caring homes, decrease cats and dogs' overpopulation through spaying and neutering, support widespread rabies vaccinations, and promote responsible pet ownership.
New Leash on Life is dedicated to improving companion animals' welfare in the community through shelter, placement, spay/neuter, education, and awareness. They believe that through education and spaying/neutering, they can ensure a better future for Nashville's pets.
Dogingham Palace Rescue focuses on rescuing pets from kill shelters and placing them in foster homes until they can eventually be adopted. They are a non-profit organization that is entirely run by volunteers.
Noah's Ark Society focuses on rescuing the bottom 10%. Their mission is to rescue, educate, rehabilitate and love all animals that come to Noah's Ark Society. They offer pet placement programs and education. They also have resources for wildlife rehabilitation and reintroduction. Currently, Noah's Ark Society is raising capital funds to acquire a 500-acre sanctuary.
Founded by Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Emmylou Harris, Bonaparte's Retreat works to save dogs most in need at Metro Nashville Animal Care and Control and municipal shelters in surrounding counties. As a small foster-based, 501(c)3 non-profit dog rescue organization, Bonaparte's Retreat focuses on the neglected and forgotten — senior dogs, large dogs, or dogs in need of imminent medical care or surgery.
Originally founded in Los Angeles, Wag & Walks now has a Nashville chapter that focuses on the same compassionate care and rescue resources. They try to pair each animal in their care with the perfect forever home.
Rural Animal Rescue Effort is a non-profit based in middle Tennessee with a mission to rescue neglected and abandoned animals in rural areas. They focus on areas with extreme overpopulation of companion animals.
Adopt a pet in Nashville!
Ready to find your new best friend? Our help doesn't stop there! At Local Pet Care, we're here to help you find not only the best places to adopt, but also the best dog parks in Nashville, amazing pet-friendly restaurants, and the extra help you need with local pet care pros! With all of these resources, you will be set up for pet-parenting success!
For more great articles about dog-friendly activities and pet-parenting advice, check out the Blog at LocalPetCare.com.