Adoption Policies

Thank you for your interest in a GSP!  If you have not owned a GSP before, make sure that this is the right breed for you by reading the information provided at breed-info.  This is not a breed for everyone so please be realistic in assessing your ability to provide what a GSP needs to be a happy dog.

The following are basic requirements for adopting one of our dogs:

  • Our adoption area includes the states of VA, MD, DE, WV, and DC. We typically do not adopt to areas outside of the Mid-Atlantic region. Exceptions are sometimes made for dogs that need special considerations.
  • If you have a yard we require some form of fencing. Physical fencing is preferred but we will adopt to homes with e-fencing as long as a professional trainer is hired to work with the dog on the fence. We do not accept outdoor kennels or tie-outs. 
  • For physical fencing, the minimum height we allow if 4ft fencing. Even 4ft fencing may disqualify you from some dogs if they are jumpers.
  • Similarly, we do not adopt our dogs out to situations where they will be left outside while no one is home. 
  • We do consider applicants in condos or apartments on a case by case basis.
  • A monthly Heartworm preventative is required for adoption. Heartworm is extremely prevalent in the Mid-Atlantic area and is a costly and painful disease to treat. 
  • The dog should not be left alone for more than 8 hours at most.  GSPs are “velcro dogs” and just want to be with their people. Being alone for longer than 7 or 8 hours can invite separation anxiety and potentially destructive behaviors. If you work long hours but still want a GSP, doggy day care or a dog walker are necessary.
  • If you have a cat please be reminded that most GSPs are very prey-driven. If a cat runs and darts, he or she is prey to most GSPs. It is not unlikely that a GSP with strong prey drive could kill a cat. MDGSP Rescue will not place GSPs that have not been cat tested into a cat home.
  • GSPs are wonderful family dogs. They love their pack and don’t like being separated from you. Very young children and young, exuberant GSPs, however, are sometimes not a good combination. These dogs are very rambunctious and can easily knock over a young child. If you have young kids and are still interested in adopting please consider an older more settled GSP.
  • A happy GSP is a well exercised GSP! GSPs are high energy dogs and require a good amount of exercise to be happy and healthy. This is especially true for the younger ones. So if you enjoy lots of walks, runs, playing fetch with your dog, etc,then a young energetic GSP might be the right dog for you. Most GSPs maintain a good amount of energy even into their senior years. Dog parks and doggy day cares (depending on the dog) can provide an additional source of exercise and play time.