UPAWS Surrender Procedures

Your pet would much rather spend the rest of their life with you – their family – no matter what the situation. Uprooting them is hard on them because they do not understand why their family went away. We understand that life is hard, and sometimes pet owners may be unable to continue caring for their pet, but surrender should be considered a last resort.


Please call 906-475-6661 in advance to discuss before bringing us your pet. If you live outside of our service area (Marquette County), we may be unable to help you. You will be asked to call your local shelter.

When you surrender to UPAWS, you lose all rights to your unwanted pet. You will not be able to visit or have any decision-making power in the pet’s future care and arrangements. You must complete an Owner Surrender Application that severs all ties between you and your surrendered pet.

  • If your pet is not already “fixed,” has special needs, or is not up to date with vet care, a monetary donation is suggested and needed to help offset the cost of your pet’s needed care. Your donation will help with the care of your pet. UPAWS relies on donations and fees to care for approximately 1,300 animals each year. We do not receive any national or local government funding.
  • Did you acquire your pet from another animal shelter, rescue organization, or breeder? If so, have you contacted that shelter or rescue organization or breeder? If they are reputable, you would have signed a contract when you adopted your pet, stipulating that the pet must be returned to them if you decide to no longer keep him or her for any reason. Please contact them before contacting UPAWS.

**We do not house or re-home animals that are deemed vicious or dangerous to the public.  We DO NOT have professional trainers, nor are our staff trainers.**

How to Surrender Your Pet to UPAWS

1. Call (906) 475-6661. Speak to a staff member, and please schedule an appointment.

2. Fill out the appropriate profile form (below links) to help us learn about your pet so we can place he/she in an appropriate new home. Please do this before your appointment, that way you can take your time filling the profile at home and save time at UPAWS.

Cat Personality Profile

Dog Personality Profile

Small Animal Profile

3. Bring your pet and any veterinary records for the pet to your scheduled appointment. Contact your vet to get a copy of your pet’s medical records, including rabies tag and microchip registration, if applicable. Or have your vet fax the information to 906-475-6669.

Determine which of your pet’s belongings you can send with him/her. Having their own crate, bed, toys, jacket, etc., keeps the pet more comfortable by being around familiar objects. Please send food, medications, and/or supplements, along with instructions for administration.

Questions, comments, or concerns: please contact us at info@upaws.org or (906) 475-6661