Adoption Resources & FAQs

Save a life & gain a friend

Here at Fishtails, we pull animals from local high-volume shelters that would normally be deemed “unadoptable” due to urgent medical needs or concerns, provide them with necessary medical treatments, and send them to temporary, loving foster care until they find their forever homes.

Our mission:

To create a safe space dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of stray and shelter animals in our community. At Fishtails, we truly believe that every animal deserves a fighting chance – especially elderly, sick, or otherwise “unadoptable” animals that would typically be overlooked.

The Adoption Process

Fishtails Animal Rescue is located in Philadelphia, PA and accepts applications within the tri-state area. Once you’ve browsed our list of available animals and have found a pet you’d like to adopt, the first step in our adoption process is to complete the adoption application. All applications are reviewed within 72 hours of submissions.

Any pet adopted out by Fishtails Animal Rescue will be:

  • Up-to-date on vaccinations
  • Microchipped
  • Spayed/neutered* (if age-appropriate)
  • Administered flea/heartworm preventative medications

Fishtails is a foster-based rescue, so once your application is approved, we’ll schedule a virtual or in-person meet and greet with your potential pet.

*If the animal is not spayed/neutered at time of adoption, the adopter will do so within 2 months after the animal reaches 6 months of age. In addition, if the pet is under 16 weeks at the time of adoption, the adopter is responsible for boosters for vaccines.

Adoption FAQs

I can’t adopt, but I still want to help – what can I do?

Even if you can’t adopt a pet, you can still help them (and us) in many ways! Here are a few ways to help:

  • Donate: Donating money, even if it’s just the spare change can make a huge impact! Consider asking friends and family to send donations to our rescues in lieu of gifts on your birthday and during the holidays. Donate here
  • Like & Share Our Adoptables: Simply liking our page and sharing our posts with your friends can help spread awareness! You never know when that special connection between human and homeless pet will happen.
  • Rock Fishtails Gear: Not only do we make fun t-shirts and hoodies for animal lovers, we are dedicated to saving the lives of shelter animals with every purchase! Each sale goes directly towards our rescue and the care of our animals. Shop our gear

What are the benefits of adopting a rescue?

Thinking about adopting a pet? Here are some reasons why rescue is the best option:
  • You’ll save a life: 90% of our Fishtails Animal Rescue Adoptables were time-stamped pets who escaped euthanasia with minutes to spare.
  • Our rescue will have space for another animal: Once a pet is re-homed and an adoption fee is received, this allows us to rescue and rehabilitate another time-stamped pet in its place.
  • Many rescues are already house trained: Cats and dogs in foster care are exposed to house training. Dogs and cats that have been abandoned by their owners may also be trained to live indoors. This can make owning a pet even more enjoyable!
  • You can find both puppies and purebreds: If you’ve got your heart set on a purebred or puppy, please contact us. We may have the perfect fit for you!

What is a time-stamped pet?

Time-stamped pets are shelter animals with extreme medical concerns that are almost always the first to be slated for euthanasia, no matter their age/breed. Dr. Cohn began her rescue efforts by pulling these types of animals from local shelters, providing them with necessary medical treatments, safe and loving temporary foster care, and ultimately finding them their forever homes.

Time-stamped pets in need deserve a fighting chance, even with severe injuries and underlying illnesses. With the help of The Fishtails Fighting Chance Fund, these pets get their second chance.

Adoption saves lives.

Help us match our adoptable pets with their forever homes!

Adoption Stories


March 30th 2020 changed my life forever, not because of the pandemic but because this handsome boy Grimm came into my life.

He was very sick and was due to be euthanized unless a rescue stepped in to help him, and I am so happy that Fishtails saved him. He was sent right to the ER where they performed life saving surgery on him.

His story and pictures captured my heart. From his crazy antics of head butting to being brushed to him trying to run away with my yarn, he has brought nothing but joy into our lives and filled a spot in my heart that I didn’t know I had. I will forever be grateful to Dr. Cohn and Fishtails Animal Rescue for saving my crazy, lovable floofy boy Grimm.


When the pandemic began I was forced to uproot my life and move to a new city I had never been to, and where I knew nobody. I was thinking about adopting a cat to ease the loneliness, but hadn't been serious until I saw Billy's post. I knew the moment I laid eyes on his big, long body that he was meant to be mine.

Now, after nearly a year I can confirm he is the best thing in my life. By my side every day and all night, he is a true companion. I don't even mind when he wakes me up at six am, demanding breakfast two hours early.

Even though I had family cats growing up, I never knew I could love an animal the way I love him. He is special, and he makes every moment better.


In 2018, Fishtails and Fishtown Animal Hospital was there for us when we unexpectedly lost our cat Jax. We decided to foster Parker (FKA Mishu) who we met when visiting Dr. Cohn at FAH. He was a small, skinny little guy that had been burned and left in terrible condition. We are so thankful Fishtails saved him and gave him a chance.

He has jumped over many health hurdles but is finally a happy, healthy cat! Of course we fell in love with his fighting spirit and constant need for snuggles. We ended up adopting him and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

He loves to watch the birds outside, play with his mouse toys, follow us everywhere, and demands to be swaddled in a blanket like a baby and cuddled.


We adopted Zeus (FKA Coco) in November 2020. Zeus has been such a bright spot in our family during the pandemic, all he wants to do is cuddle, play, and of course eat. He also LOVES to talk, so much so that I’ve started calling him “Squeaky”.

We are grateful to Fishtails and his foster mom for taking such good care of Zeus before he got to his furever home.

Charlie Bean

We adopted Charlie Bean, (AKA Bean, Beanie Boy, Mr. Manager) in 2019 when he was very scared after mostly living on the streets and was also recovering from some health problems related to his FIV+ status.

Now he is very confident around us, demanding cuddles and playtime and keeping an eye on us when we work from home. He’s also discovered some “cat” things that he didn’t know existed, like watching birds through the window and napping in sunbeams. We’re so proud of him!

We’re always so grateful that Fishtails gave him a chance, we love him so much.


Ringo was a timestamped stray Fishtails scooped up from ACCT. I volunteered to foster very much hoping to fail! I imagined him and my OG Ramona falling in love and becoming the best of buds.

That didn't pan out, but now Ringo is now my chonky, happy little man who shakes his booty when I pull out treats, loves liking ice cubes, and is obsessed with showing the ropes to Fishtail foster kittens.

Help support our animals today!

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