Frequently Asked Questions

Maricopa County Animal Care & Control is a public animal shelter committed to finding good outcomes (current 94.8% save rate) for lost, surrendered, and stray dogs and cats. Below, you can get answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.

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Animal Care Facts


  1. Why Can't MCACC veterinarians save all animals in their care?

We often get more than 70 animals in our shelters each day. For the vast majority, we have no information whatsoever, including medical history or knowledge of any vaccinations. Our veterinarians and technicians do everything they can to treat and rehabilitate animals in poor health, and we also partner with other non-profits in this effort. Our team monitors the animals daily to identify any developing medical issues. However, sometimes these animals come to us after their health has been neglected too long, and we are unable to save them.

  1. How are medical decisions reached at MCACC?
  1. Are all animals at MCACC spayed/neutered?
  1. Why can’t MCACC veterinarians save all animals in their care?
  1. Can I bring my adopted pet back to MCACC clinic to receive treatment?
  1. My private vet disagrees with what the MCACC vets said. What do I do?

volunteer leaning down to give treat to a dog inside a kennel

Shelter & Operation Facts


  1. Are there other potential funding sources?

Yes! MCACC is excited to announce a new, dedicated 501c3 fundraising entity called “Arizona Pet Partners” that will fill the void left by the departure of “Friends of Animal Care” a few years back. Arizona Pet Partners will support MCACC programs and services, including public spay/neuter and vaccination work through our Pet Help program.

  1. How are public records requests handled?
  1. Are shelter issues included and addressed in strategic planning?
  1. WHY AREN'T ANIMALS EXERCISED AND WALKED MORE?
  1. DO DOGS GET IN-KENNEL ENRICHMENT TO KEEP THEM OCCUPIED?
  1. WHAT KIND OF ROUTINE CARE IS PROVIDED IN THE SHELTER?

MCACC Volunteer sitting with shelter pup

Employee & Volunteer Facts


  1. How Can I Volunteer at MCACC?

We are currently recruiting volunteers, including those who wish to foster animals, to support both our East and West Shelters. See the Opportunity Directory for more details on each of our unique programs. As a volunteer, you will be helping us achieve our mission by assisting pets in need and serving our community. There are so many opportunities to make a difference.

Please watch this short video to see the expectations and realities of volunteering at our shelters and then review the volunteer handbook to get a better understanding of what we’re all about!

After viewing the video and handbook, to become part of the team, please complete the volunteer application here. Once we receive and approve your application, we will reach out to you to set up your orientation! We host two orientations a month, one on a weekday and one on a Saturday, to accommodate your schedule.

  1. What is MCACC doing to ensure safety for employees and volunteers
  1. How is MCACC addressing high turnover of employees and volunteers?
  1. Are employees and volunteers able to submit feedback on MCACC leadership?
  1. Is compassion fatigue training or education available for employees?

Husky in vet office

Managed Intake Facts


  1. What does "managed intake" mean?

For MCACC, managed intake is an appointment-based intake process for all non-emergency situations. Community members who find a stray dog have the option of calling the appropriate animal control agency for pick up or can schedule an appointment to bring the animal to the shelter themselves.

  1. Why can't MCACC just take all the pets that come through the door?
  1. What if there is an aggressive dog in my neighborhood that can't wait for an appointment?
  1. Will managed intake make it more difficult for lost pets to return home?
  1. What are the benefits of managed intake?

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Euthanasia Facts


  1. Does MCACC euthanize for space?

MCACC does not euthanize for space. MCACC euthanizes for health and behavioral issues after all other interventions have been exhausted. For several years in a row, we have found good outcomes for more than 95% of the animals who come into our shelter.

  1. Does MCACC euthanize for behavior?
  1. What is the e-list?
  1. How are rescues alerted about e-list animals?