Uploading animals to aggregators of adoptable animals

Zoe Rogers
Zoe Rogers
  • Updated

Shelterluv can be configured to automatically upload your animal records to aggregators of adoptable animals, including Petfinder.com and Adopt-a-Pet.com.

Click your gear icon > Configuration > Uploads and Integrations > Aggregators of Adoptable Animals to get started.

What user permissions do I need to configure aggregator auto-uploads?

  • Configure my shelter and its users


Learn your way

Prefer watching over reading? Check out the video below!

How to Set Up Your Auto-Upload

Please note Petfinder and Adopt a Pet are configured using different methods. You will use the FTP upload option listed in Configurations for Petfinder, however, do not use the FTP section in your Uploads and Integrations section of Configuration to enable the Adopt a Pet integration. Please follow the instructions listed below.

FTP-specific usernames, passwords, and servers are different from your general login details to your account on these sites.

Use the tabs below to navigate between each aggregator's instructions.
  • You will need to follow these steps to set up your Adopt a Pet auto-upload integration. Do not use the FTP section listed in your Upload and Integrations Configurations

      1. Generate an API Key from your Shelterluv account using these instructions. We recommend using a seperate API Key for each integration or data feed so they can be controlled separately. Always enter a description for your API keys for reference later.
      2. Log in to your Adopt a Pet account. and navigate to https://www.adoptapet.com/shelter/upload or in your Admin area, go to Shelter/Rescue AutoUpload/Import Pets. Remember: If you were using another software, de-activate 1st by setting active to "no" then clicking update.

      3. Select "Shelterluv" and click continue.
      4. Paste your Shelterluv API key you generated at the beginning in the box labeled Shelterluv API Key.
      5. When you are ready to start the auto-upload, select the 'Yes' option above the API Key entry. Click Save and your automatic upload will begin processing.

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    Setting up in advance:

    If you currently have an auto-upload account running through a different software, you will need to wait until the day you go live with Shelterluv to enable the API integration with Adopt a Pet. You can generate and save your Shelterluv API key in your Adopt a Pet account at any time. Only set the Activate Automated Imports option to 'Yes' when you are ready to have data from your Shelterluv account uploaded.

    Multiple Accounts:

    If you have multiple locations or foster homes spread out across different regions, you may want to be able to set up multiple Adopt a Pet accounts to showcase your pets. You can do this using the automatic upload and generating a seperate API Key for each of your Adopt a Pet accounts.

  • Follow these steps to set up your Petfinder auto-upload integration:

    1. Enter members.petfinder.com in the FTP Server field.
    2. To get your FTP username and password, email Petfinder's support at help@petfinder.com with this message:

      "We are switching to Shelterluv as our software provider and would like to request our FTP credentials for auto-upload. Shelterluv will be sending photo URLs for our animals."

    3. Once you receive your username and password from Petfinder, enter them in the FTP Username and FTP Password fields.

    4. Click the blue Save button to save your FTP details.
    5. When you are ready to start the auto-upload, click the red Auto Upload Disabled button.

    Petfinder FTP Details.png

    We recommend having Petfinder wipe your existing pets from your account before setting up auto-uploads to avoid duplicate listings, but this should be planned carefully with the Petfinder team so that there isn't a gap in your animals being listed. Animals will be listed in the order they are uploaded, and the newest animals will appear first.

Testing the Connection

To test the connection with each aggregator after entering the credentials, make sure it is set to Auto upload enabled and then click the blue Save button. You will see a pop-up with the results of the connection test.

Be sure to switch each integration back to Auto upload disabled after the test if you have not gone live with Shelterluv yet.

Upload Intervals

Once the upload is enabled, it will take several hours to process the initial upload. Please note that animal records in the initial upload may appear without photos as they take longer to process but will generally appear a few hours after the initial animal records.

Following the initial upload, aggregators will update at the following intervals:

  • Petfinder: Hourly
  • Adopt a Pet: Every 30 Minutes

Publishable Animals

We will only upload animals in a status that's configured to Publish=Yes. Once the animal is moved into a status that's configured to Publish=No or adopted, it will be taken off these sites when the next auto-upload runs.

Frequently asked questions

  • If one specific animal is being excluded from your auto-uploads, follow these steps to troubleshoot:

    1. Verify that the animal is currently in a status that is configured to be publishable.
    2. Verify that the animal has a sex of Female or Male
    3. Verify there are no special characters like commas or semi-colons in the attributes added to the animal record
    4. If an animal is showing up on these sites without a photo, be sure to check if the photo is set to "Publish" and that a "Cover Photo" is selected.
  • If you are utilizing auto-uploads, you will not want to update animals directly in your Adopt A Pet or Petfinder accounts, as the changes will be overridden each time an update is made.

    We send a new file at intervals to these aggregator sites, which lets them know the animal information to upload and update in your aggregator account. Each time we send a new file, your account is wiped clean of any additional changes each time a new file is processed.

    For Petfinder specifically, the upload file does not include a field for Location or Contact, but these fields do exist for each animal within your Petfinder account. Since our integration does not support either of these fields, any changes made to them within Petfinder directly will remain unchanged when the next upload file is processed.

    If you want to add a completely new listing through Petfinder directly and the animal won't be included in your published animals via Shelterluv, you would need to make sure the "Pet ID" field is completely blank, otherwise, the pet will be deleted/overwritten with your next upload from Shelterluv.

    If you would like to retain a record of adopted animals in your Petfinder account, you can choose to remove the "Pet ID" field in your Petfinder account prior to processing the adoption in Shelterluv, then mark the animal as Adopted within your Petfinder account.