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11 Best Dog Rescues In Melbourne (Updated 2023 Guide)

Best Dog Rescues In Melbourne

Melbourne is one of the most livable places in the world…

But do you know what would make living in Melbourne better?

Having a furry friend with you.  

And I know just the place where you can meet some cute doggos to adopt. 

Keep reading to discover:

  • Importance of fostering.
  • 11 best dog rescues in Melbourne.
  • Places that accept pet surrendering.
  • And much, much, more…

11 best dog rescues in Melbourne

#1: RSPCA Victoria (Burwood East)

This community-based charity advocates for animal care and protection.

They cater to more than 14,000 animals annually.  

Tending to the sick and injured, finding new homes for the abandoned, they are in constant need of your help. 

Support them by donating to their organization. 

Help them carry out their mission by letting one of their animals into your home.

Other services: 

  • Vet clinic.
  • Pet Grooming.
  • Behaviour Training.
AddressShop 10, 2-8 Burwood Hwy, Burwood East, VIC 3151
Phone0427 522 502
Office HoursMonday – Friday: 10:00 AM- 2 PM
Social Media Accounts:N/A

#2: Lort Smith Animal Hospital/ Lort Smith Adoption Centre Campbellfield

Lortsmith is well-known for its top-quality veterinary services.  

But they do more than that.

They also find new homes for approximately 600 animals every year. 

They have a more rigorous adoption process than others.  This is to ensure a perfect match between the rescue animals and potential adopters. 

But it will all be worth it. Since you get to have a cute rescue dog in the end. 

Other services: 

Address25-35 Berwick Road, Campbellfield VIC 3061
Phone03 9287 6426
Office HoursN/A
Social Media Accounts:Twitter, Youtube, Linkedin, Facebook, Instagram.

Note: Their adoption centre is open by appointment only. 

#3: The Lost Dogs’ Home North Melbourne

It is one of Australia’s biggest animal shelters. 

Most of their rescues are stray or lost companion animals.  

Before they’re turned over, adopted pets are microchipped, spayed/neutered, and vaccinated. 

They’re at the forefront of promoting responsible pet ownership and animal welfare. 

They still need some help though. 

They have some special case animals which cannot stay in the shelter environment and need to undergo foster care. 

But not everyone can open their homes to these animals in need. 

If you can, learn more about the process here

Address2 Gracie Street North Melbourne VIC 3051
Phone(03) 9329 2755
Office HoursMonday – Thursday: 10 AM – 5:30 PM
Friday: 10 AM –  4:30 PM
Saturday: 9 AM – 3 PM
Sunday: Closed
Social Media Accounts:Twitter, Youtube, Facebook, Instagram

#4: Geelong Animal Welfare Society

GAWS stands true to their motto,  “Every Life is precious”.  

They work hard on finding homes for the animals under their care. Because they believe that these precious beings deserve more.

Their expert adoption counselors help you find a pooch to match your lifestyle. 

Imagine having a furry partner to hang out with or assist you in your day-to-day activities. 

What a perfect sight!

All animals will be vaccinated, desexed, microchipped, and will undergo medical exams. 

Reading Tip: Adopting A Rescue Dog: The First 7 Days [Checklist]

Other services:

  • Vet clinic.
  • Pet surrendering.
Address325 Portarlington Road, Moolap, 3224
Phone03 5248 2091
Office HoursMonday to Friday: 9 AM – 4PM
Saturday: 10 AM – 3 PM
Sunday: 1 PM – 4PM
Public Holidays: 12PM – 3PM
Social Media Accounts:Facebook, Instagram.

#5: Animal Aid

Animal Aid’s mission is to deliver outstanding care to both people and animals they serve. 

They act as a refuge for the animals that found their way into their shelter.  

A safe place for the pets that have been through a lot. 

The rescue believes that their animals must all be equally given the chance for a better life. 

Regardless of their breed, age, and health condition,  Animal Aid will give them the treatment they deserve. 

Help them with their mission. Adopt, foster, or donate now.

Other services:

  • Vet clinic.
  • Grooming.
  • Pet boarding.
  • Dog Training.
Address35 Killara Road, Coldstream
Phone03 8756 1300
Office HoursEveryday: 11:30 AM – 3:30 PM
Social Media Accounts:Youtube, Facebook, Instagram.

#6: Australian Animal Protection Society

Australian Animal Protection Society

It’s there in their name, animal protection. 

They’re concerned with the welfare of all the animals in their area. 

And I mean ALL animals. 

From native animals to domesticated pets, AAPS is willing to take them in. 

They’ve been around for 50 years, and they can go on for another 50 with your help. 

You can adopt from their shelter in just 4 easy steps:

  1. Plan and see which type of pet is best suited for you. 
  2. Search for a perfect match on their website. 
  3. Apply for adoption and wait for confirmation. 
  4. Visit the shelter and meet your future fur baby. 

Other services:

  • Vet clinic.
  • Grooming services.
Address26 Aegean Court, Keysborough 3173
Phone(03) 9798 8415
Office HoursMonday – Saturday: 10 AM – 3:30 PM
Sunday: 11 AM – 3 PM
Social Media Accounts:Facebook, Instagram.

#7: Save-A-Dog Scheme

SADS is a front-liner of the no-kill movement. 

They want to move to a culture of saving companion animals instead of taking the easy way out. 

They treat injured and sick dogs, including those that need palliative care. Because they truly believe in the saying that a dog is “a man’s best friend”. 

And what do we do with our best friends in their times of need? 

We help them in any way we can. 

Join their movement and show your support. 

Address36 Weir Street, Glen Iris, VIC Australia
Phone(03) 9824 7928 or 0418 389 810
Office HoursEveryday: 9 AM – 5 PM
Social Media Accounts:Youtube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram.

#8: Second Chance Animal Rescue

As their name suggests, this shelter is all about second chances.  

The cats and dogs in their care deserve to have that second chance in life. 

And to do this, it takes only the 3 R’s: Rescue, Rehabilitate, Rehome.

But these 3 words entail a lot of effort and hard work on their part. 

All their animals are in foster care. This means that they’re already used to a home environment. 

Moreover, their animals are already vet-checked, desexed, microchipped, and vaccinated. 

This is good news for potential adopters. 

So what are you waiting for?

Read Next: 17 Critical Tips To Take Care Of A Rescue Dog (Guide)

Other services:

  • Surrendering. 
  • Pet Food Pantry.
  • Outreach Programs.
  • Safe House for Pets.
Address23 Grasslands Ave., Craigieburn, Victoria 3064
Phone03 9357 0834
Office HoursMonday – Friday: 9 AM – 4:30 PM
Social Media Accounts:Facebook, Instagram.

#9: Blue Cross Animals Society of Victoria

A little compassion goes a long way…

Blue Cross Animals Society of Victoria wants a safe and compassionate world for all animals. 

They want to remove animal suffering through humane treatment and education. 

A lot of animals in their care are just waiting for someone to let them into their homes. 

Getting ready to display their unique and lovable personalities to their new family. 

If you want to see it, consider adopting.

Address26 Homestead Road Wonga Park Victoria 3115
Phone(03) 9722 – 1265
Office HoursEveryday: 11 AM – 3:30 PM
Social Media Accounts:Facebook, Instagram.

#10: Victorian Dog Rescue and Resource Group Inc.

“The goal is to no longer be needed”…

Huh? Does this sentence make sense?

Yes, this is the goal of the Victorian Dog Rescue and Resource Group.

And it makes a lot of sense. 

They rescue neglected, abused, and abandoned animals. 

And they wouldn’t be needed anymore when animal abuse and neglect stops. 

As a foster care network, their animals are all in foster homes. 

And they had developed a bond with them. Even after adoption, they still cherish this bond.  

They continue to be in contact with the families that adopted from the shelter and offer assistance if needed. 

Other services:

Office HoursN/A
Social Media Accounts:Twitter, Youtube, Facebook, Instagram.

Note: For general inquiries, email them at

#11: The Animal Rehoming Service Inc.

TARS rehome all types of animals from small creatures like mice to large ones like donkeys. 

What’s great about this rescue is how hands-on their founder is.  She personally handles inquiries about the rescue. 

As of now, TARS’ service is focused on rehoming the animals they have. 

They’re actively looking for people who can adopt or foster their animals. 

Since a lot of their foster families retire after adopting the animals under their care. 

Why should I consider fostering?

Well, fostering works in two ways. 

It can serve as a temporary home to the animals in the shelter. 

And it can also be a trial period for those who haven’t decided on adoption yet. 

Either way, fostering is a great way to help as well as adoption, of course. 

Editor’s Pick: 13 Mistakes When Adopting A Rescue Dog (Guide)

AddressChurch St, Brighton VIC 3186
Phone0409 21 31 31
Office HoursMonday – Saturday: 9 AM – 5 PM
Social Media Accounts:Twitter, Facebook

#BONUS: Homeless Hounds

Homeless Hounds provide shelter to at-risk animals. 

They recognize the fact that many companion animals end up being neglected or abused. And this is what they want to address. 

What does it mean when you adopt from their rescue?

It means a lot. You’re saving the life of an at-risk pet. 

You’re breaking the cycle of animals being euthanized. 

Instead, you allow them to have a second life. 

Other services:

  • Pet Surrendering.
  • Desexing Program.
AddressLevel 2/990 Whitehorse Rd., Box Hill VIC 3128
Office HoursMonday – Friday: 9 AM – 5 PM
Social Media Accounts:LinkedIn, Youtube, Facebook, Instagram