When we were young, Dad worked near the big city shelter for a while. He began bringing home puppies we would adopt and we went through a series of pups who were sick until finally we found one we'd have as a family pet for life.
As grown ups, we went to a rescue group shelter and visited some cats, and eventually chose one (or she chose us?). We haven't adopted from a municipal shelter before that we can recall.
The end of summer is a good time to consider adopting a pet. As life settles back into a more regular routine, the new pet is part of the routine and makes it a little bit different in a good way!
You can usually find a full schedule of adoption events at local pet supply stores like PetSmart or Petco most weekends.
Have you adopted a pet from a shelter or rescue? What was that like?