Symbolic Marine Animal Adoption Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I adopt an animal from Oceana?

Many of the world’s most iconic creatures rely on the ocean for their habitat and food - but our oceans are in trouble, and we need your help to save them. Adopting an ocean animal is the perfect gift for friends and family, and supports Oceana’s critical work protecting the oceans and the marine life that call them home.

Symbolic adoptions are also a thoughtful and meaningful gift for the holiday season that can be personalized for you and your loved ones.

What do I get with my adoption?

Your adoption package varies with your donation amount. You will receive a cookie cutter, a stuffed animal plush, or both depending on your selection. See donation amounts below for a general guide.

$30: (1) cookie cutter, (1) personalized adoption certificate
$50: (1) stuffed animal plush, (1) personalized adoption certificate
$75: (1) cookie cutter, (1) stuffed animal plush, (1) personalized adoption certificate
$100: (3) stuffed animal plushes, (1) personalized adoption certificate
$150: (1) plush turtle, (1) turtle cookie cutter, (1) personalized adoption certificate, (1) sea turtle fact card and note from Casey + complimentary gift wrapping

What creatures are available for adoption?

Whales, sharks, sea turtles, dolphins, polar bears, penguins, seals, sea otters, rays, orcas, manatees, clownfish, puffins and octopuses are available for adoption.

How much does it cost to adopt a creature?

Adoption amounts range from $30 - $150. If you would like to donate a different amount and choose not to receive a cookie cutter or stuffed animal, you can do so here.

I want to adopt more than one creature. Can I do that?

Yes! Please note that if you need to send items to multiple addresses, you should create a separate order for each shipping address.

I’d like to make a donation above the suggested amount, but I still want to get a cookie cutter or stuffed animal in return.  What should I do?

Thank you for your generosity! After you are finished shopping but before you enter any payment information, you will be able to review your cart. On that page, there is an option to add an additional donation to your total amount.

What is my adopted animal’s name?

Your adoption is a symbolic adoption. Your donation is not specific to one marine animal. Your donation to Oceana supports our proven campaigns around the world addressing issues including preventing overfishing, protecting ocean habitat, stopping the expansion of offshore drilling, fighting illegal fishing and more – which helps all marine life. Learn more about what we do.

Can I personalize the adoption certificate for more than one person?

No, not at this time. If you have multiple names, please place multiple orders. We offer free shipping.

When will my package arrive?

Free shipping is via USPS 1st Class mail. For shipping to U.S. addresses, you can expect your package to arrive 8 – 12 business days after you make your donation. Currently, shipping beyond the United States is unavailable.

I adopted an animal, but my package hasn’t arrived. Where is it?

It typically takes 2 – 3 weeks for your package to arrive after you’ve made a donation. You will receive a tracking number via email when your product ships. If it has been longer than three weeks, please contact us and include the details of your adoption.

This adoption is a gift. Can I have it sent to some else?

Yes! Just be sure to fill out the name and shipping address of the gift recipient during checkout.

Can I ship my package internationally?

At this time, packages can only be shipped to U.S. addresses. You can make an honorary donation here and send an e-card via email to the individual you wish to honor or make a gift on behalf of after completing the transaction.

How does my discount work?

Discounts are valid with the appropriate code for any purchase over $25.

I don’t want to give my credit card information online. Can I still adopt?

Yes, we can also process your order over the phone. Note that we will still process your payment online. Please call (202) 467-1972 to process or to work out order by mail.

I’m experiencing a website error. What should I do?

Try reloading the page. We may be experiencing a high amount of volume at the moment. If that doesn’t work, contact us at (202) 467-1972 or wavemaker@oceana.org and let us know about the problem.

Where are the stuffed animal plushes and cookie cutters made?

The cookie cutters are created by H.O. Foose in Pennsylvania, American Tradition Cookie Cutters in Pennsylvania, Cheap Cookie Cutters in Florida, and Off the Beaten Path in Missouri. The plushes are produced by Aurora GiftsKonik, and Wildlife Artists. Each owns factories in China and Indonesia that meet or exceed all child labor practices, labor guidelines and human rights standards set forth by the Toy Manufacturers Association.

Who is Casey Sokolovic?

A Greenville, N.C. resident, Casey Sokolovic was a finalist for Oceana’s 2009 Ocean Heroes award. At age nine, Casey became an environmental steward and role model for others her age when she began a sea turtle conservation campaign called L.A.S.T. – Love A Sea Turtle. She has raised over $3,000 for a North Carolina-based sea turtle rehabilitation hospital, in part by selling sea turtle-shaped sugar cookies. Read more about Casey on Oceana's blog, The Beacon.

Will I receive emails from you if I make an adoption?

All donors who indicate they live in the United States will become Oceana Wavemakers and will receive emails about our campaign work. You can unsubscribe from these emails at any time. Donors in other countries will not receive emails because of international laws and regulations regarding email communications.

Will you sell or rent my personal information if I make an adoption?

No. You can view our privacy policy here.

Will you send me updates on my animal?

No, your adoption is a symbolic one. Your donation is not specific to one individual marine animal. Your donation to Oceana supports our campaign work – which helps all marine life. We will keep you informed of our campaign work through email.

Is my donation tax-deductible?

Your donation is tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. The amount that is tax deductible depends on the size of the donation and the gifts you receive. Please subtract the following from your donation total to account for the fair market value of your gift.


  • Cookie cutter kit: $5.00
  • Single plush kit: $10.00
  • Plush and cookie cutter kit: $15.00
  • Deluxe plush (Casey Kit): $15.00
  • Multi-plush kit (3 plush creatures): $30.00

Accessories and Apparel

  • Water bottle: $8.00
  • T-shirts: $8.00
  • Cap: $4.00
  • Travel mug: $6.00
  • Blanket: $17.00
  • Beach mat: $10.00
  • Beluga plush key clip: $1.50

If you would like to make a 100 percent tax-deductible donation, where you do not receive a gift, you can do so here.

I want to donate but I don’t need anything in return.  What should I do?

Please visit this link to complete a donation. You will have the option to send an eCard to someone you’d like to donate in honor or memory of. After you enter your credit card information, click “I would like to make this donation in someone’s honor” and you will be prompted to select an eCard and enter the recipient’s name and email address.

If I already made a donation of $30 or more this year, can I get a cookie cutter or stuffed animal now?

No. You must specify your donation is a symbolic creature adoption at the time of the transaction.

How does my donation help?

Your donation helps Oceana carry out our important campaign work. Right now, our teams of marine scientists, economists, lawyers and advocates are fighting to reduce overfishing, seafood contamination, habitat destruction and the killing of threatened species like turtles and sharks.

Who is Oceana?

Oceana is the largest international advocacy organization dedicated solely to ocean conservation. Oceana is rebuilding abundant and biodiverse oceans by winning science-based policies in countries that control one third of the world’s wild fish catch. With more than 200 victories that stop overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution and killing of threatened species like turtles and sharks, Oceana’s campaigns are delivering results. A restored ocean means that one billion people can enjoy a healthy seafood meal, every day, forever. Together, we can save the oceans and help feed the world. Visit www.oceana.org to learn more.

When will I receive my package?

You will receive a tracking number via email when your package ships.

I have a question that isn’t answered here?  What should I do?

Contact us and we will get back to you as soon as possible.