News Release - Rochester Animal Services Temporarily Suspends Animal Surrenders

City of Rochester 

News Release

(Tuesday, April 9, 2024) – The Rochester Animal Services (RAS) shelter, facing continued overcrowding, has announced that it will not be accepting surrendered animals starting today through April 28. The shelter, which is now operating at beyond maximum capacity, has been forced to make this difficult decision due to the number of animals in its care and the lack of available space and resources.

To address the continued overcrowding issue, RAS is urging residents to step up and help rehome animals by fostering or adopting them. Like other shelters across the country, the intake of animals into the shelter is outpacing RAS fosters and adoptions.

 “This is a national problem that requires a collective effort from our community,” stated Dr. Shirley Green, Commissioner of the City Department of Recreation and Human Services, which operates and manages the shelter. “I urge all residents who are able to foster or adopt an animal during this critical time to reach out to the team at RAS to help.”

 During this time, residents seeking to rehome their animals are encouraged to explore online platforms that facilitate direct home-to-home placement services ( and

 Additionally, for pet owners needing assistance with access to pet food, the RAS Pet Food Pantry is available every 2nd and 4th Friday of the month. The pantry is conveniently located near 524 Oak St., in the Rochester Community Sports Complex stadium parking lot. The entrance is at 448 Smith St., and the pantry is located in the back corner of the stadium parking lot. (


 About Rochester Animal Services: Rochester Animal Services is a vital resource for homeless and abandoned animals in Rochester. Dedicated to providing compassionate care and finding loving homes for animals in need, the shelter relies on the support and involvement of the community to fulfill its mission.

 The Administration of Mayor Malik D. Evans strives to create a safe, equitable and prosperous Rochester by inspiring hope and delivering opportunity for everyone. Guided by the Administration’s Mission, Vision and Values and the principles of the “Rochester 2034” comprehensive plan, City employees are committed to providing exceptional customer service, transparent stewardship, and collaborative leadership to foster a vibrant community that empowers personal, professional and generational growth for all who live, work or play in the city of Rochester.  


Pets and Animals