Digitizing the Pet Adoption Process


the picture of doctor with a dog

Big Fluffy Dog Rescue is dedicated to saving giant mixed breed dogs in need. The rescue is a non-profit organization with its headquarters in Nashville, Tennessee and branches in 21 other states. It has over 1,000 volunteers and a placement record of about 2,500 dogs per year.

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Though they value dogs of all breeds, Big Fluffy Dog Rescue is dedicated specifically to saving “big fluffy dogs” including Great Pyrenees, Saint Bernards, Newfoundlands, and others. These dogs come from a variety of places: some were taken from “high-kill shelters” which frequently kill dogs rather than place them in new homes, while other dogs were given to the organization by owners who no longer wanted them or could no longer support them. Ultimately, the goal for all of these animals is the same: to place them in a supportive, caring home environment. Big Fluffy Dogs relies on PDFfiller to help make this possible.

The Problem

dog and woman

The first time Jean Harrison, a volunteer at Big Fluffy Dog Rescue used PDFfiller, she needed to fill out a tax form. But filling out tax forms was just a small component of the unanswered document problems Big Fluffy Dog Rescue had.

Big Fluffy Dog Rescue relies on digital connections to unite dogs and potential owners. While they use social media to advertise dogs to potential host families, there was no effective solution to convey the requests of families and their information to the organization itself. “In terms of the forms we created, the type of thing we needed did not exist,” said Jean Harrison. “People were using Word documents or Google forms, which wasn’t particularly effective.”

Double quotes

“In terms of the forms we created, the type of thing we needed did not exist. People were using Word documents or Google forms, which wasn’t particularly effective.”

– Jean Harrison, Volunteer at Big Fluffy Dog Rescue

Before they began using PDFfiller, document submission, “wasn’t being done well,” said Jean Harrison. “We have a very unique setup and a very specific set of needs and there wasn’t a product that worked, just a whole bunch of things we cobbled together.” Their original ad hoc solution never provided a cohesive, streamlined, and simple way to collect information from families hoping to adopt a dog.

In order to save their dogs, Big Fluffy Dog Rescue needs to connect with families wanting to adopt these pets; PDFfiller helped solve this crucial problem of communication.

The Solution


Big Fluffy Dog Rescue relies on electronic forms to ensure that families wanting to adopt dogs can communicate with the Rescue. Using a link or an embedded form, families can submit their requests to Big Fluffy Dog Rescue.

Big Fluffy Dog Rescue has and does use PDFfiller for tax forms — “it’s very convenient for that, said Harrison. “It’s nice to have handy when you need something on the fillable front”. However, says Harrison, “the overwhelming use that we have for [PDFfiller] is definitely to deal with the public and to deal with the adopter and foster base and volunteers, all those people use these forms.”

Figure A. Creating a filliable dog adoption form form with PDFfiller

Figure A. Creating a filliable dog adoption form with PDFfiller.

The process is simple: Big Fluffy Dog Rescue uploads their forms to PDFfiller and makes the data fields fillable using PDFfiller’s proprietary ‘Link to Fill’ feature. Link to Fill allows Big Fluffy Dogs to create and host fillable forms by using the drag and drop wizard to place fillable fields right on top of the form. Big Fluffy Dog Rescue can then distribute the forms by embedding them on their website or sharing a URL or QR code with families planning on adopting a dog.

Families adopting pets can decide on a dog they want, click the link to a fillable adoption form and provide their response in fields requesting contact information, details about the family and home, dog preference, and previous experience with animals. After completing the denoted fields, users can add a legally binding digital signature using PDFfiller’s e-sign technology, and submit their data to Big Fluffy Dog Rescue. The adoption process begins instantly and completely electronically.

Because “the document contracts and things like that come through PDFfiller, and are all then collated in one digital file, said Harrison describing the way in which Big Fluffy Dogs has chosen to organize each family’s documents. “It’s all centralized in one place and allows us to access everything from one location and it’s a permanent form so it’s something we always have.”

Figure B. Filling and sending dog adoption form by the family with PDFfiller.

Figure B. Filling and sending dog adoption form by the family with PDFfiller.

The Benefits of
Using PDFfiller


PDFfiller makes it easier for Big Fluffy Dog Rescue to gather information from potential families. With its easy to use form creator, electronic distribution, and secure document storage and management, PDFfiller is the most comprehensive online document solution. PDFfiller’s advanced tools also allow you to make certain fields mandatory, collect contact information, and add a legally binding digital signature. These features allow users to fill out and send adoption applications to Big Fluffy Dogs quickly, completely, and legibly. PDFfiller also makes it easier for Big Fluffy Dogs to process these applications every month by helping them process, organize, and store documents.


PDFfiller doesn’t just make it easier for Big Fluffy Dog Rescue to distribute forms and collect information, “it’s saving the people who want to work with us time,” said Jean Harrison. The ease with which families can submit forms means a reduced barrier to adopting dogs and a higher success rate placing them in families.

Cost of Savings

It’s difficult to quantify the financial savings when Big Fluffy Dog Rescue’s bottomline is the lives of its animals, rather than money. PDFfiller has made itself an inextricable part of this adoption process. And according to Jean Harrison, “PDFfiller is an inexpensive platform for what it is — Google Drive and Google Forms may be free but this works a little better and it is, I think in the long run, a more usable platform for us.”


PDFfiller uses Amazon’s ultra-secure S3 servers. Moreover, unlike Google, PDFfiller doesn’t archive and use your personal information for its own benefit. “[Security] is [an issue I was concerned about when choosing PDFfiller]. I’m [also] a lawyer… and I’m always concerned about data privacy. But nothing ever dies on Google Drive — whatever you give them they hold forever,” said Harrison. PDFfiller also features advanced user authentication options to ensure only specific users access forms, an audit trail to track who has accessed and edited your documents, and encrypted folders to add an extra layer of security to your most sensitive documents.

Ease of Use

PDFfiller is easy to use. Because the service is completely online, PDFfiller can be used from any internet-connected device at any time. “It is [easy to use],” said Harrison — “it’s very simple.” PDFfiller’s graphical user interface means that users can create and submit forms quickly and simply while its completely online functionality means users no longer have to download, edit, upload, or even use code when creating and sending forms.


PDFfiller’s powerful comprehensive online document management solution makes forms easier to make, complete, distribute and sign than webforms or other similar online platforms. More secure than Google forms, faster to distribute than paper-based forms, easier to create than webforms, and easier for users to complete than other online solutions, PDFfiller is the ultimate online document management tool. Big Fluffy Dog Rescue depends on the rapid transmission of forms and ease of use to facilitate their adoption services, making PDFfiller the perfect choice.

PDFfiller has been such a success for the organization that in the future, Big Fluffy Dog Rescue will “likely integrate more PDFfiller forms into [their website].” Fillable forms, secure document transmission, and electronic signatures mean that Big Fluffy Dog Rescue can focus on saving dogs rather than dealing with administrative or technical problems.

“For organizations that aren’t enterprise organizations, this is a very easy to use platform that anyone can manage, it’s not expensive, it’s simple to use, and it’s easy for customers,” said Harrison. “For the purposes of what we do, this is a very easy platform that is simple for people to use.”

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