Released Dogs

Released Dogs

In order to become a TLCAD service dog, a dog must have a combination of good health, temperament and skills. TLCAD obtains both purpose-bred puppies and carefully assessed shelter dogs that become service dog candidates in our Rescue Acquisition Program. The standards for service dogs are extremely high.  Those that do not become service dogs go through a “career change” in which they become wonderful pet dogs. These dogs are then eligible to be adopted from TLCAD by the public. 

Dogs are typically released from our program due to:

  • Behavioral reasons: high activity level, incompatibility with cats or other dogs, assertiveness requiring strong handler leadership. Some of these dogs may not be suitable for homes with young children or other pets.
  • Medical reasons: anything from allergies to cataracts to varying severities of dysplasia (hip and elbow).

Most of our career change dogs are between one and two years old, and can be any of the following breeds: 

  • Labrador Retrievers/Mixes
  • Golden Retrievers/Mixes
  • Poodles/Mixes
  • German Shepherds
  • Mix Breeds

The fee to adopt a career changed dog is $500.00.

TLCAD prefers to place career change dogs as pets in adoptive homes in San Diego county and surrounding areas of Southern California so that TLCAD staff can perform an in person interview and home visit to ensure our dogs go to an appropriate forever home. We will consider adoptees outside of Southern California, but please note that all expenses for transporting the adopted dog are the responsibility of the adoptee. Interested adoptees from outside of Southern California must be willing to travel, at their own expense to San Diego or pay the expense for transporting the dog within a week of being notified by our Training Department that a potentially suitable dog is available.

TLCAD receives more inquiries for career change dog adoption than we have dogs available. Our selection process is based on suitability rather than a first-come, first-serve basis. Dogs are matched with adoptees taking into the consideration of the needs of both the dog and the potential adoptee and their family. Applicants not selected for adoption consideration will be notified by email. Those looking to add a well-trained pet to their family or home are encouraged to apply!

Please note that TLCAD career change dogs can NOT be used as service dogs, facility dogs or demonstration dogs nor have they been fully trained to aide a child under the autism spectrum, a wounded warrior with PTSD, TBI and/or mobility limitations or for individuals with other special needs.



If you would like to be notified when released dogs are available, please complete the form below.

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