About Our Adoptions

General Information

Understand the ancestral background of the animals we rescue and learn about the proper ways care for them.

Our ‘Aruban Specials’ (also called ‘Aruba Cunucu Dogs’) are a rare breed named after their homeland: the small Caribbean island of Aruba in the Dutch Antilles. The word ‘Cunucu’ means ‘countryside’ in the Aruban language of Papiamento.

Modern research techniques have shown that this little-known breed has an interesting origin. DNA tests have revealed that its ancestors were probably introduced to Aruba by Portuguese slave-traders sometime in the 16th century. The dogs they took with them were probably very similar to the modern Iberian breed called the Medium Portuguese Podengo, known in its homeland as the Podengo Portuguesa Medio. Once on the island, some of those imported dogs then came into the possession of the indigenous Arawak Indians, who crossed them with local dogs that were living on the island in a semi-wild, feral condition. Once the Arawak Indians had developed their own breed of hunting dog, they employed it to pursue the island’s iguanas; large lizards that offered a valuable source of protein.

The Cunucu Dog is a medium-sized animal that appears in a variety of color forms, especially brown-and-white and black-and-tan. It is athletic, courageous, loyal and intelligent. A very fast-moving dog, it is renowned for its amazing leaping ability. This is an adaptation to its lizard-chasing, when it must skillfully maneuver the rocky outcrops in the island’s arid interior at high speed.

We take the health of our rescues very seriously. Any knowing, pre-existent health issues will be mentioned.

General healthcare treatment:

  • Adult dogs: bloodtest, flea/tick treatment and prevention, heartworm test, deworming, preventative treatment with panacur (3 days) and baycox, rabies vaccine, vaccination(s), spay/neuter.
  • Puppies: bloodtest, flea/tick treatment and prevention, deworming, preventative treatment with panacur (3 days) and baycox and vaccination (most of the times the first vaccine).
  • Adult cats: deworming, flea/tick treatment and prevention, FeLV and FIV test, preventative treatment with panacur (3 days) and baycox, rabies vaccine, vaccination(s), spay/neuter.
  • Kittens: deworming, flea/tick treatment and prevention, preventative treatment with panacur (3 days) and baycox and vaccination (most of the times the first vaccine).

Our cats and dogs will be spayed/neutered when they’re about 4/6 months old (depending on their overall condition). A lot of our rescues are puppies and kittens. This means they won’t be spayed/neutered before their adoption. However, spaying/neutering our rescues is mandatory; this is also clearly stated in our adoption agreement.

The Adoption Process

Adopting is currently possible for those residing in the United States, Canada, Aruba, the Netherlands, and Sweden.

Our adoption fee:

  • Cat: $200 (USD)
  • Dog: $250 (USD)

The adoption fee covers all the necessary veterinary care up until the point of traveling and the traveling costs (airport fee, carrier/crate, paperwork).

We want to make sure each of our rescues go to a loving home and find a family that fits their specific temperament well. Because of this, we kindly ask you to fill in our application form. It asks a number of detailed questions which are necessary for our screening process.

Renters must show proof that pets are allowed, so please send us a copy of your rental agreement. We also request a reference check from your veterinarian.

After receiving your application we will begin processing it as quickly as possible.

Please be aware that we often receive multiple applications for the same animal and we try our best to choose the application that will be the best match for this particular dog or cat. We do our best to respond to each application and email in a timely manner. Please be sure to monitor your email account and phone closely to ensure we are able to contact you. Please feel free to follow up with us at any time.

Finding the perfect match for our precious rescues and their forever loving families is something we take very seriously.

After choosing the right family we will set up a phone call to make the process a little more personal. After that we request the vet reference check, the adoption agreement and the first payment of the adoption fee to finalize the adoption.

We will start looking for a transporter as soon as possible. How quickly this happens varies on the destination, animal and time of the year. It also depends on where and how far the adoptive family is willing to drive. Finding a transporter is often last minute work, so make sure that we are able to reach you.

As soon as we find a transporter we will send you the flight and necessary personal information of the person transporting your pet. We will also request the rest of the adoption fee.

Depending on the weight of your pet, he/she will travel in the cabin (maximum weight is 20 lbs) or as cargo. Traveling is often stressful for our rescues and we do everything we can to make sure they are as comfortable as possible. Luckily, a lifetime of happiness makes up for one day of discomfort.

The adoptive family will be ready and waiting at the airport of arrival to pick up their newest furry family member. For advice on getting your newest family member accustomed to his/her new home, take a look at our foster manual. You may find it very useful!

We will try our best to get our rescues as healthy and happy to you as we possibly can. We inform our adoptive families about their newest family members thoroughly, but there are no guarantees when it comes to their temperament, level of training or health.

We kindly request our adoptive families to send the carrier/crate back to us for our next rescue to travel in. It can be sent to our container shipping from Florida, to someone going on vacation to Aruba who is willing to transport them back to us or by ordering one from our Amazon Wishlist.

Your dog was born in Aruba where the temperature ranges from 85 to 95 degrees year round. The dog will need to adjust to the new climate where you live. He/she may be cold in even 70-degree weather. So when you bring your dog outside, please keep an eye out for signs of him or her being cold – you may need to put a sweater on the dog and be sure to keep it warm in the house while it gets accustomed to its new surroundings. This is of course dependent on the weather at the time of year.

Your dog has been dewormed. However, it is important for you to bring your new dog to the vet as soon as possible for a thorough examination, blood tests and stool tests for anemia and intestinal parasites. The dog may have been exposed to ticks (Ehrlichia is very common here) as they are abundant in Aruba – if anemic, they may need a prescription for doxycycline. Stools should be tested for tape worms and round worms as well as coccidia. Please follow your veterinarian’s recommendations and instructions to keep your dog healthy.

There are several types of diseases that can be triggered by the stress of traveling. Stress can cause a decrease in an animal’s immune system thus making it difficult for them to handle common infections or diseases. Animals may not show clinical signs of certain viral infections or tick borne disease until several days or weeks after adoption and may even be triggered by any type of stress.

  • Parvo (mainly seen in puppies) is a viral infection that attacks the lining of the intestines in dogs. The virus causes depletion of cells that are part of the immune system. The virus is very contagious and is spread by the oral fecal route. Clinical signs begin 6-10 days after exposure and include: lethargy, anorexia, vomiting, and hemorrhagic diarrhea. These lead to a dehydrated state and if left untreated is fatal. It is important that your puppy or even adult dog get vaccinated for this preventable viral disease. It will take a series of boosters before your dog is considered protected, so be sure to follow up after your pets first vaccination.
  • Ehrlichia is a tick borne disease seen all over the world. Clinical signs include lethargy, lack of appetite, joint swelling, fever, anemia and nasal discharge. It can take several hours to several days for transmission from the tick to occur and some dogs may be infected for several weeks to years before clinical signs can appear. Treatment is available and can be successful with early detection. It is important to have your dog tested yearly at your veterinarian with a 4DX test that tests for heartworms and 3 types of tick borne diseases.
Your cat was born in Aruba where the temperature ranges from 85 to 95 degrees year round. The cat will need to adjust to the new climate where you live.

He/she has also been dewormed. However, it is important for you to bring your new cat to the vet as soon as possible for a thorough examination. Stools should be tested for tape worms and round worms as well as coccidia. Please follow your veterinarian’s recommendations and instructions to keep your cat healthy.

There are several types of diseases that can be triggered by the stress of traveling. Stress can cause a decrease in an animal’s immune system thus making it difficult for them to handle common infections or diseases. Animals may not show clinical signs of certain viral infections or tick borne disease until several days or weeks after adoption and may even be triggered with any type of stress.

  • Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (also known as feline AIDS): this is a virus that is spread mostly by bite wounds that occur from fighting, most commonly in unneutered male cats. Rarely is it spread from mother to kittens, grooming or via food bowls. Usually cats infected with this virus have a very poor immune system and have a hard time overcoming infections. Vaccination is available, but once cats are vaccinated they will always test positive.
  • Feline Leukemia is commonly seen worldwide in cats. This virus is easily spread via saliva and nasal secretions. It is also possible for kittens to be infected in utero and by nursing from an infected mother.

Clinical signs for both FIV and Feline Leukemia can range from oral infections, GI disease, ocular disease and inability to clear other infections. If you suspect your cat is showing signs of infection it is important to have an examination by a veterinarian so they can appropriately treat your pet.

Summarizing the Whole Adoption Process in Five Steps

Take a look at our Instagram page and/or our website to find the perfect dog or cat for your family.
Fill in our application. After going through the applications, we will try to find the best fit for each individual cat/dog. We will contact you as soon as we’ve reached our decision.
If approved, we will set up a phone call and request the first payment of the adoption fee. Provide a reference from your vet and renters must send proof that pets are allowed. We will provide the necessary information about your new pet and will start looking for a transporter.
After finding a transporter, we will ask you to transfer the second part of the adoption fee. We will email you the flight information and contact info of the transporter.
Drive to the airport and meet your new pet!