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11 Best Dog Rescues In Toronto (Updated 2023 Guide)

Best Dog Rescues In Toronto

Oh, the Canadian metropolis…

Let’s zoom in on it, shall we?

Past the skyscrapers of Toronto, stray dogs wander the streets.

The good thing is many shelters take ‘em in.

Now, you’re looking to adopt.

Let me help you start with that.


Keep reading to discover:

  • 11 best dog rescues in Toronto.
  • How to adopt from each dog rescue.
  • The contact information of every rescue shelter.
  • And much, much more…

11 best dog rescues in Toronto

#1: Toronto Humane Society

Did you know? They’re one of the city’s oldest animal welfare charities.

The Toronto Humane Society started in 1886.

And today, they continue to help the animals and their community. 

Moreover, they also provide the people of Toronto with a loving companion.

And this service is still ongoing…

So, if you’re thinking of adopting a rescue dog…

Well, just visit this page to see their rescues up for adoption.

If you still need more time and guidance, they got your back…

You can read how their rehoming process works. Another option is to contact them through the information I’ve given below.

Contact information
Address11 River St, Toronto, ON M5A 4C2, Canada (Google maps)
Opening hoursWeekdays: 11 AM to 7 PM
Weekends: 10 AM to 6 PM
Social media presenceFacebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

#2: Dog Tales Rescue & Sanctuary 

Dog Tales began its service in 2014…

And despite their novelty, they’ve done a lot of good for the canines of Toronto.

Until today, they continue to be of service.

One way that they help out is by rehoming the strays.

And you can contribute as well.

If you’re a dog-loving person, maybe it’s time for one?

Or if you already have a few, well, add another…

Whichever it is, you can check out their page of available dogs.

Who knows?

One might just unexpectedly capture your heart.

Oh, and don’t forget to also read about their adoption process.

How ‘bout fostering?

First, why does the shelter need foster parents?

It’s because some dogs have special needs.

And so, a home environment is the best setup for them.

Moreover, an individual caretaker is much more focused on their needs.

Then, you can also better assess the dog’s temperament.

With that, the dog gets the specific care that they need…

All while they wait for a forever home that they deserve.

So, are you willing to be a rescue’s temporary parent?

Then, you can apply to be a foster parent.

Contact information
Address1405 19th Sideroad, King City, ON L7B 1K5, Canada (Google maps)
Opening hoursAs of writing, they’re not open to the public. You must make an appointment first. You can do so by giving them a call.
Social media presenceFacebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

Editor’s pick: 17 Critical Tips To Take Care Of A Rescue Dog (Guide)

#3: Etobicoke Humane Society

Etobicoke Humane Society

Over 30 years ago, EHS began its service for the community.

Today, they stand as a small shelter. But they’re proud to have a big heart.

The people of EHS are dedicated to their cause.

That’s why they can offer you the best assistance when it comes to adopting a dog.

To avail of their adoption services, kindly go to this page.

It’s an all-in-one page. There, you’ll find the following:

  • Adoption process.
  • Dog adoption form.
  • Adoption statement.
  • Dogs ready to be adopted.

Moreover, they have a dedicated page for special dogs.

But what makes these canines special?

According to EHS, a dog is special when they’re:

  • Showing behavioral concerns.
  • Needing more adequate training.
  • Experiencing medical conditions.

With that, these rescues need an experienced dog parent.

Moreover, they also require a lot more patience compared to other dogs.

But don’t let that stop you from checking ‘em out…

These dogs can offer you intense love and a fulfilling companionship just the same.

To learn more about the rescues and adoption criteria, click here.

Contact information
Address67 Six Point Rd, Etobicoke, ON M8Z 2X3, Canada (Google maps)
Opening hours7 days a week from 10:30 AM to 4 PM.
Note: They’re closed from 11:30 AM to 1 PM during weekdays.
Social media presenceFacebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

#4: Toronto Animal Services

The City of Toronto cares for the canines in their community.

That’s why they have many services for the animals in Toronto…

Let’s focus on a specific one, which is adopting a dog.

The city recognizes the issues of stray animals.

And that’s why they promote the adoption of canines.

Kindly proceed to this page. There, you can find out all about adopting from the City of Toronto.

Adoption fee: $185 to $215

And like I said, the city is watchful for the strays…

That’s why they also set up a lost and found service.

This helps dog parents reunite with their missing fur babies.

Lastly, click here to see their other services for the animals of Toronto.

Contact information
Address821 Progress Ave, Scarborough, ON M1H 2X4, Canada (Google maps)
Opening hours*Every day between 10:30 AM to 6:30 PM
Social media presenceFacebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

*Note: As of writing this article, their shelters aren’t open to walk-ins. Kindly give them a call to make a visiting appointment.

#5: Stray to Play

This organization is a foster-based one.

What’s that?

They’re the kind of dog rescue that doesn’t have kennel shelters yet.

With that, they make use of the foster system.

All their adoptables are being taken care of by foster parents.

As I mentioned before, this setup is ideal for dogs with special needs.

But in general, it’s a better environment for the rescues.


According to research, rescue dogs experience stress in animal shelters.

They can undergo both chronic and acute stress.

But with a foster home, they get rid of the stressful environment.

Instead, they’re enriched in a home, even if it’s just temporary.

So, how ’bout giving a rescue a permanent home?

Let them say goodbye from bouncing from one foster home to another…

Check out their adoptables that are eager to meet you.

If you decide you wanna take a rescue home, just contact the shelter.

Contact information
Opening hoursN/A
Social media presenceFacebook and Instagram.
How to send them a messageKindly scroll down their homepage to see a contact form. Fill it out and submit it to send them a message.

For further reading: 13 Mistakes When Adopting A Rescue Dog (Guide)



This rescue cares for tiny dogs…

But they guarantee that these rescues can put a gigantic smile on your face.

BUTTONNOSES takes care of tiny dogs with a big purpose.

They’re committed to pint-sized pooches across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

Moreover, they also specialize in senior dogs and canines with special needs.

All in all, their aim is:

To spoil teensy puppers with a home, then save those who don’t have one.

And you can work with them on the latter.

Check out their ‘Save a Life‘ page. There,  you can learn more about their cause.

And if you’re keen on adopting a BUTTONNOSE, just click here.

The page you’ll be redirected to contains the following:

  • Adoption process.
  • Criteria and requirements.
  • Adoptable BUTTONNOSES dogs.
Contact information
AddressTrinity – Bellwoods, Toronto, ON M6J 1G3, Canada (Google maps)
Phone1-844-NOSES-00 (1-844-667-3700) 
Opening hoursN/A
Social media presenceFacebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

#7: Fetch + Releash Dog Rescue

They’re another foster-based rescue. And they also aim to rehome strays across GTA.

In fact, their vision is to help provide the strays with 5 kinds of freedom.

According to Fetch + Releash, those are:

  • Freedom from distress.
  • Freedom from discomfort.
  • Freedom from hunger and thirst.
  • Freedom from pain, injury, and disease.
  • Freedom to express their innate behaviors that promote their well-being.

Now, you know that you can provide those types of freedom to a canine…

So, what are you waiting for?

First, you can learn about the necessary adoption information. That linked page includes fees, other costs, and considerations.

To see their adoptables, go to this link. 

And if you’re set on adopting one, just fill out and submit this form.

Adoption fee: $550 to $900

Contact information
Address206B Queen St S, Mississauga, ON L5M 1L3, Canada (Google maps)
Email (for adoption inquiries) 
Opening hoursN/A
Social media presenceFacebook and Instagram

#8: Mattie’s Place

In over 30 years of service, they’ve made thousands of canines happy.

In a given year, they rescue about 200+ animals.

They care for both cats and dogs. But, their primary focus is on canines.

Wanna help out in their cause?

Then, you can adopt a lovely pooch from them.

Here, take a look at their wonderful canines for adoption.

To adopt one, just click the picture of the canine of your choice. 

Then, you’ll be redirected to a page with more details about the dog. 

Also, there’ll be a button for you to start the adoption process.

With that, they’ll review your application.

Kindly note that their adoption process might take as long as 2 weeks.

That’s because they carefully assess each application. 

Mattie’s Place makes sure that a rescue goes home to a family that matches them. 

And that’s why they take pride in their adoption process.

Contact information
Address159 Fallingbrook Rd, Scarborough, ON M1N 2V2, Canada (Google maps)
Opening hoursWednesday to Sunday: 12 PM to 6 PM
Social media presenceFacebook and Instagram.

Check out also: Adopting A Rescue Dog: The First 7 Days [Checklist]

#9: Pugalug Rescue

If Pugs have your heart, then this is the perfect rescue for you…

Pugalug specifically rescues and cares for Pugs.

Moreover, all Pugs are in foster care. And they’re waiting for a potential long-term parent…

So, are you who they’re looking for?

See for yourself by browsing this page of rescue Pugs.

Once a specific pooch captures your eye…

Oh, never let ’em out of your sight now…

Inquire about the rescue by clicking on their picture.

There, you’ll learn more details about the canine. Doing so might make you fall in love with them even more…

And with that, once your mind is set, you can proceed with the adoption process.

If you need more information about the rescue, contact

Contact information
AddressStation K, Pugalug Pug Rescue, Toronto, ON M4P 3J7, Canada (Google maps)
Mailing addressPugalug Pug RescuePO Box 1421, Station K Toronto, ONM4P 3J7
Opening hoursN/A
Social media presenceFacebook and Instagram.

#10: Speaking Of Dogs Rescue

They make sure that every rescue gets the best care.

That’s why they aim to provide a sanctuary for unwanted dogs…

Then, SDR also gives their best on finding the best home for the rescues.

Other than that, they also provide treatment and attention to dogs with special needs.

Lastly, SDR also educates the public about the welfare of canines.

Now, does your cause align with theirs as well?

If yes, they’ll be the perfect partner to help you find your future fur baby.

For more information, just proceed to their page for their adoption process.

And once you’re familiar with that, how ’bout seeing their rescues?

Go to this page to see their dogs available for adoption.

And then you can proceed to the last step, which is to send your application.

Click here to be sent to the adoption application form.

Adoption fee: $450 

Contact information
Address25 Waterbeach Crescent, Toronto, ON M9W 3L8, Canada (Google maps)
Mailing addressSpeaking of Dogs RescueP.O. Box 8058RPO HurontarioCollingwood, ON L9Y 0H1
Phone705-444-SODR (7637) 
Opening hoursAccording to their Facebook page, they’re always open.
Social media presenceFacebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

#11: Redemption Paws

Another shelter-free dog rescue organization…

Redemption Paws also make use of the foster-care system.

With that, they don’t have an active and operational phone line.

But, they’re reachable through email. 

That aside, let’s talk about their quality adoption services.

First of all, they charge an adoption fee that ranges from $895 to $1,233.

It’s a little pricey because all dogs are:

  • Spayed/neutered.
  • Regularly checked by the vet.
  • Up-to-date with their vaccines.

Moreover, they have a non-refundable fee of $40 for the application.

But, it’ll all be worth it…

Why not?

Come see their adoptable dogs on this page and fall in love.

And for more information, click here. Doing so will lead you to a page explaining their adoption process, plus adoption FAQs.

Contact information
Address60 Atlantic Ave, Toronto, ON M6K 1X9, Canada (Google maps)
Opening hoursEvery day from 9 AM to 5 PM.
Social media presenceFacebook and Instagram.