6 Best German Shepherd Rescues in Alabama

Categorized as Breeders & Rescue
Featured image for an article about 6 Best German Shepherd Rescues in Alabama

German Shepherds are one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States. Known for their intelligence, loyalty, and protective nature, these dogs make wonderful companions and family pets.

Unfortunately, many German Shepherds end up in shelters and rescues through no fault of their own. Their owners may not have understood the commitment required to properly care for such an active and driven breed.

If you’re looking to adopt a German Shepherd in need of a second chance, Alabama has some excellent rescue organizations. Here are 6 of the top options in the state:

1. Helping Shepherds of Every Color Rescue

Location: Montgomery, AL

Website: helpingshepherdsofeverycolor.com

Helping Shepherds of Every Color Rescue is a small, volunteer-run group based in Montgomery. As their name suggests, they help German Shepherds of all colors, including white GSDs.

This rescue takes in surrendered and shelter dogs from the tri-county area. Their goal is to rehabilitate and rehome German Shepherds in need.

All dogs are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and microchipped before adoption. The rescue provides medical care, socialization, and training to get the dogs ready for new families.

Foster homes are desperately needed, so contact the rescue if you’re able to temporarily house a German Shepherd.

2. Sweet Home Doberman & German Shepherd Rescue

Location: Enterprise, AL

Website: sweethomedobermanrescue.org

Phone: 334-721-3612

Founded in 2015, Sweet Home started as a Doberman rescue before adding German Shepherds in 2018. Their mission is to assist both breeds through rescue, rehabilitation, and rehoming.

This small 501©(3) nonprofit is based in Enterprise, AL, but they adopt dogs out across the country. All rescued dogs are fully vetted prior to adoption.

The founder, Nikki Lilly, is dedicated to educating the public about Dobermans and German Shepherds to combat negative stereotypes. This ensures the dogs are matched with owners who understand their needs.

3. German Shepherd Rescue of North Alabama

Location: New Market, AL

Website: gsrna.com

The German Shepherd Rescue of North Alabama has been operating as a foster-based rescue since 2000. Their team of volunteers covers Northern Alabama and Southern Tennessee.

All rescued German Shepherds are vet checked, vaccinated, dewormed, microchipped, and spayed/neutered prior to adoption.

The rescue aims to match each dog with an appropriate home after assessing their temperament and energy level. Lifetime support is provided to ensure a smooth transition.

While based in New Market, AL, GSRNA will work with approved out-of-state adopters too. They do home visits for all potential adopters.

4. Gulf Coast German Shepherd Rescue

Location: Fairhope, AL

Website: gcgsr.org

The Gulf Coast German Shepherd Rescue serves South Alabama and the Florida panhandle. They are a registered 501©(3) nonprofit organization.

Their dedicated volunteers believe every German Shepherd deserves a second chance. Dogs are rescued from shelters, stray holds, and owner surrenders.

All rescued Shepherds are temperament tested, vetted, vaccinated, dewormed, microchipped, and spayed/neutered prior to adoption.

Through their Dog T.R.A.I.N program, volunteers provide foster care and address any behavioral issues to prepare the dogs for adoption.

5. Alabama Lab Rescue

Location: Birmingham, AL

Website: lab.rescueme.org

While not German Shepherd specific, Alabama Lab Rescue sometimes gets Shepherds into their program. They are a foster-based rescue group serving the entire state of Alabama.

Any LabradorRetrievers or Lab mixes in shelters are saved from euthanasia. They also accept owner surrenders when space allows.

All dogs are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, dewormed, microchipped, and heartworm tested prior to adoption. Adopters go through an application and home visit process.

Consider reaching out about any German Shepherds they have available if looking to adopt. As a bonus, you may even end up with a Lab-Shepherd mix!

6. Bark Nation Rescue Ranch

Location: Hanceville, AL

Website: bark-nation.com

Bark Nation Rescue Ranch operates near Birmingham, AL. They rescue at-risk dogs from overcrowded shelters, providing rehabilitation when needed.

While not German Shepherd specific, they often have Shepherds available for adoption. Dogs are vaccinated, spayed/neutered, microchipped, and heartworm tested.

Bark Nation has a tranquil 25-acre facility where dogs can relax and recover before finding forever homes. Visit their site to see any German Shepherds up for adoption.

Other German Shepherd Adoption Options in Alabama

In addition to breed-specific rescues, many general animal shelters and humane societies across Alabama have German Shepherds available.

Here are some top options to check for adoptable German Shepherds:

Greater Birmingham Humane SocietyBirmingham, ALgbhs.org
Humane Society of Marshall CountyAlbertville, ALhumanesocietyofmarshallcounty.org
Humane Society of North AlabamaHuntsville, ALhsnacares.org
Lee County Humane SocietyAuburn, ALleecountyhumane.org
Alabama SPCABirmingham, ALalspca.org

Petfinder.com and Adoptapet.com also let you search for adoptable German Shepherds by location.

Check shelter sites daily, as new dogs come into the system frequently. Don’t hesitate to call and ask about any German Shepherds they may have.

Tips for German Shepherd Adoption

If you’re looking to adopt a German Shepherd in Alabama, keep these tips in mind:

Ask questions about the dog’s background. Where did they come from? Why are they up for adoption? What is their personality like? Any health or behavioral issues? The more you know, the better prepared you will be.

Be patient. It may take monitoring shelters and rescues for several weeks or months to find the right German Shepherd match. These dogs are in high demand, so don’t get discouraged. Persistence pays off.

Prepare your home. German Shepherds need space to run and play. Make sure your yard is fenced and your home is “dog proofed” before bringing one home.

Invest in training. Even well-behaved adult Shepherds need refresher courses in basic obedience. Find a local trainer to help your new dog adapt.

Stock up on supplies. Quality food, sturdy leashes/collars, grooming tools, Puzzle toys etc. Ensure you have everything your German Shepherd will need.

Budget for ongoing costs. Between food, supplies, vet bills, grooming and other expenses, German Shepherds are not a cheap breed. Adopt only if you can afford lifetime care.

By working with a rescue and properly preparing, you’ll be giving an Alabama German Shepherd in need the loving forever home they deserve.


How much does it cost to adopt a German Shepherd from a rescue in Alabama?

Adoption fees range from $100-$400 depending on the rescue. This helps cover the costs of vet care, spay/neuter, vaccines etc. It’s much cheaper than buying a puppy.

What is the adoption process like for German Shepherd rescues in AL?

The process involves an application, vet and personal references, home visit, meet and greet with dogs, and adoption contract. Rescues want to ensure dogs go to stable, committed homes.

Do German Shepherd rescues in Alabama adopt out of state?

Some do, but you may have to travel to AL to meet the dog first. Out of state adoptions take more coordination for home visits.

Are German Shepherd rescue dogs in Alabama healthy?

Reputable rescues fully vet and treat dogs before adoption. However, some may have chronic conditions requiring long-term care. Ask about medical history.

What are common reasons German Shepherds end up needing rescue in AL?

Owner surrender due to lifestyle changes, landlords prohibiting dogs, insufficient exercise/training, and overcrowded shelters after strays aren’t claimed.

What are the benefits of adopting a senior German Shepherd from a rescue?

They are calmer, already trained, and you give them a loving home in their golden years when chances of adoption are lower.

Do German Shepherd rescues in Alabama have puppies available?

Occasionally, but puppy litters fill up fast. Adopting an adult dog is recommended for first-time German Shepherd owners.

What should I prepare at home before adopting a rescue GSD?

Fenced yard, dog-proofing hazards, quality food/supplies, training support, shelter if left alone for long periods. Their needs are significant.

How can I volunteer with German Shepherd rescues in Alabama?

Options include fostering dogs, assisting at adoption events, transporting dogs, helping at vet clinics, administrative tasks, fundraising, etc. Reach out to a local rescue group to get involved.


German Shepherd rescues allow wonderful dogs to get a second chance after falling on hard times through no fault of their own. By adopting, you’ll be improving the life of a dog and reducing the strain on crowded shelters in Alabama.

Hopefully this list of top German Shepherd rescues provides a starting point. But don’t forget to keep checking your local shelters too.

With persistence and preparation, you can welcome one of these intelligent, loyal companions into your home. Rescue dogs make some of the most grateful pets!

By Andrew Garf

Andrew Garf has loved dogs, especially German Shepherds, since he was 10 years old. Though he also loves burgers, training dogs is his real passion. That's why he created the website TrainYourGSD.com - to help dog owners learn how to properly train, care for, and bond with their German Shepherd dogs.