Whatcom Humane Society Volunteer Opportunities

Whether you are interested in caring for animals, providing administrative support or helping with fundraising events, there are opportunities for anyone who wants to make a difference.  Below you will find the tasks, requirements, and time commitments for each available opportunity.

Shelter Facility Opportunities

 Job Title:  Dog TLC Volunteer

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment, 6 hours/month.
Duties:  You will:

  • provide shelter dogs with mental and physical stimulation and basic behavior training
  • walk shelter dogs and socialize puppies
  • spot clean kennels and cages
  • provide minor grooming, including brushing and bathing
  • provide clean water and fresh blankets
  • assist with daily enrichment activities as needed
  • assist in the laundry room as needed

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and Dog TLC Training.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • be confident & comfortable with all breeds of dog (including pit bulls)
  • be willing to get dirty
  • be emotionally equipped to handle crowded conditions
  • have good physical strength and ability to handle rambunctious animals
  • be able to maintain control of dogs who routinely exceed 50 lbs
  • be able to work independently and adhere to all safety and animal handling regulations
  • have an understanding of the necessity for euthanasia and show respect to the shelter staff who are directly involved with the process

Job Title:  Dog Care Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 3-month commitment.  Scheduled 3-hour weekly shift.

Opening Shifts: Sunday-Monday:  9:00 am – 12:00 pm & Wednesday–Saturday:  8:00 am – 11:00 am
Closing Shifts: Sunday-Monday:  2:00 pm – 5:00 pm & Wednesday–Saturday:  3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • cleaning and sanitizing available dog kennels
  • scoop poop
  • monitor behavior and medical needs
  • rotate dogs in & out of the potty yards
  • prepare food and feed dogs and puppies
  • socialize and comfort dogs
  • prepare and provide daily enrichment
  • stock supplies
  • assist with dishes and laundry
  • sweep and mop floors
  • take out garbage & recycling as needed

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session, Dog TLC Training and hands-on job training with Animal Care staff and/or experienced volunteers.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • have the ability to follow directions and work well independently
  • practice safe animal handling skills
  • be receptive to feedback from staff
  • be willing to take initiative
  • be able to lift up to 20 pounds

Job Title:  Dog Adoption Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 3-month commitment.  Scheduled 3-hour weekly shift.

Shifts:
Sunday-Monday:  1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Wednesday–Saturday:  11:00 am – 2:00 pm & 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • assist staff & guests with the adoption process
  • greet customers and answer questions about WHS policies
  • gather educational materials for potential adopters
  • introduce adopters to available dogs and puppies
  • retrieve and return animals to their appropriate kennels
  • spot clean meeting rooms between adoption counsels
  • assist staff in preparing adopted animals to go home with their new families

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session, Dog TLC Training, Skills Class and hands-on job training with Animal Care staff and/or experienced volunteers.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • be friendly, outgoing, and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • knowledgeable in WHS adoption policies (or easily trained)
  • be willing to take initiative

Job Title:  Cat TLC Volunteer

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment, 6 hours/month.

Duties:  You will:

  • provide shelter cats with mental and physical stimulation
  • provide socialization to shelter cats and kittens
  • spot clean kennels and change litter pans
  • provide minor grooming and brushing
  • provide clean water and fresh blankets
  • assist with daily enrichment activities as needed
  • assist in the laundry room as needed

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and Cat TLC Training.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • be willing to get dirty
  • be emotionally equipped to handle crowded conditions
  • have good physical strength and ability to carry and control animals up to 25 lbs
  • be able to work independently and adhere to all WHS safety and animal handling regulations
  • have an understanding of the necessity for euthanasia and show respect to the shelter staff who are directly involved with the process

Job Title:  Cat Care Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 3-month commitment.  Scheduled 3-hour weekly shift.

Opening Shifts: Sunday-Monday:  9:00 am – 12:00 pm & Wednesday–Saturday:  8:00 am – 11:00 am
Closing Shifts: Sunday-Monday:  2:00 pm – 5:00 pm & Wednesday–Saturday:  3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • clean and sanitize available cat kennels
  • dump/change dirty litter pans
  • monitor behavior and medical needs
  • prepare food and feed cats and kittens
  • socialize and comfort cats
  • prepare and provide daily enrichment
  • stock supplies
  • assist with dishes and laundry
  • sweep and mop floors
  • take out garbage and recycling as needed

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session, Cat TLC Training and hands-on job training with Animal Care staff and/or experienced volunteers.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • have the ability to follow directions and work well independently
  • practice safe animal handling skills
  • be receptive to feedback from staff
  • be willing to take initiative
  • be able to lift up to 20 pounds

Job Title:  Cat Adoption Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 3-month commitment.  Scheduled 3-hour weekly shift.

Shifts:
Sunday-Monday:  1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Wednesday–Saturday:  11:00 am – 2:00 pm & 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • assist staff & guests with the adoption process
  • greet customers and answer questions about WHS policies
  • gather educational materials for potential adopters
  • introduce adopters to available cats and kittens
  • retrieve and return animals to their appropriate kennels
  • spot clean meeting rooms between adoption counsels
  • assist staff in preparing adopted animals to go home with their new families

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session, Cat TLC Training and hands-on job training with Animal Care staff and/or experienced volunteers.  Completion of 10 Cat TLC volunteer hours required (training included).  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • be friendly, outgoing and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • knowledgeable in WHS adoption policies (or easily trained)
  • be willing to take initiative
  • be able to lift up to 20 pounds

Job Title:  Small Animal TLC

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment, 6 hours/month.

Duties:  You will:

  • socialize and play with rats, mice, gerbils, guinea pigs, ferrets, rabbits & more
  • spot clean kennels and cages
  • provide minor grooming
  • provide clean water and fresh bedding
  • assist in the laundry room as needed
  • assist with daily enrichment activities as needed
  • allow animals supervised play/exercise time

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and Small Animal Training.  You should:

  • feel comfortable with a wide variety of small animals
  • be willing to work with under-socialized or scared animals
  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • be willing to get dirty
  • be emotionally equipped to handle crowded conditions
  • be physically able to bend/squat and sit on the floor
  • must adhere to all WHS safety and small animal handing regulations
  • have an understanding of the necessity for euthanasia and show respect to the shelter staff who are directly involved with the process

Job Title:  Small Animal Care Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 3-month commitment.  Scheduled 3-hour weekly shift.

Opening Shifts: Sunday-Monday:  9:00 am – 12:00 pm & Wednesday–Saturday:  8:00 am – 11:00 am
Closing Shifts:Sunday-Monday:  2:00 pm – 5:00 pm & Wednesday–Saturday:  3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • cleaning available small animal cages
  • monitoring behavior and medical needs
  • preparing food and feeding all small animals
  • socializing and comforting small animals
  • preparing and providing daily enrichment
  • stocking supplies
  • assisting with dishes and laundry
  • sweeping, mopping and taking out garbage

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session, Small Animal TLC Training and hands-on job training with Animal Care staff and/or experienced volunteers.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be patient and understanding with people and animals
  • have the ability to follow directions and work well independently
  • practice safe animal handling skills
  • be willing to care for all species
  • be receptive to feedback from staff
  • be willing to take initiative
  • be able to lift up to 20 pounds

Job Title:  Laundry Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment, 6 hours/month.

Duties:  Assisting in our laundry room washing, drying and folding towels, blankets, toys and other supplies as needed.

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and hands-on training.  You should:

  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be willing to get dirty
  • be able to work independently

Job Title:  Animal Photography Team

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment.

Duties:  You will:

  • obtain high-quality digital photographs of adoptable animals
  • assist staff by loading photos to a shared space and sharing on social media

Requirements:  Must be 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and Animal Handling classes.

You should:

  • be a dedicated individual with digital photography and computer knowledge
  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of shelter animals
  • be willing to handle cats, dogs, and/or small animals as needed
  • practice safe animal handling skills
  • have patience and a positive attitude

Job Title:  Veterinary Clinic Assistant

Time Commitment:  At least three hours per week (depending on need). Must be able to commit to one scheduled shift per week.  Minimum 6-month commitment.

Duties:  You will:

  • help prepare animals for surgery
  • observe animals as they emerge from anesthesia
  • prepare injections
  • clean and sterilize surgical instruments and equipment
  • assist with treatments
  • administer medications
  • assist the Veterinary Technician as needed
  • restrain animals

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session as well as on-the-job training by veterinary clinic staff.  You should:

  • be comfortable working in a veterinary clinic setting
  • have good physical agility and endurance
  • have a strong interest in veterinary medicine and animal breeds
  • be willing to commit to a weekly schedule
  • be able to lift 50 lbs
Farm Facility Opportunities

Job Title:  Farm Animal Friend Volunteer

WHS provides housing and care for these animals at a 10-acre off-site facility located in Everson.

Time Commitment:  Shifts scheduled weekly based on availability.  Approximately 2 hours per week.  Minimum 6-month commitment.

Duties: You will:

  • provide cleaning, care and socialization for a variety of livestock including, but not limited to, horses, pigs, goats, sheep and cows.§  clean barn stalls and outdoor animal enclosures
  • groom horses and other livestock animals
  • feed animals
  • groundwork duties available for the very seasoned/experienced volunteers only (does not include riding) 

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age (16-17 years of age may volunteer if accompanied by a parent or guardian).  Volunteers must understand the risk associated with working around large animals in barn and outdoor environments.  You should:

  • have prior experience working with horses or other livestock
  • must have reliable transportation to get to & from the farm facility
  • have a strong desire to improve the lives of farm animals
  • be confident & comfortable with animals of all sizes
  • be willing to get dirty
  • have good physical strength and ability to lift 40+ lbs
  • be able to work independently and adhere to all safety and animal handling regulations
  • have an understanding of the necessity for euthanasia and show respect to the staff who are directly involved with the process
Thrift Shop Opportunities

Job Title:  Thrift Store Cashier

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment.  Scheduled weekly shift.

Shifts: 
Friday, Saturday & 9:30 am – 1:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Sunday 10:30 am – 3:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • greet customers
  • process sales quickly and accurately
  • promote donations at checkout (round up!)
  • assist with open & closing duties as needed

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and hands-on job training.  You should:

  • be familiar with the WHS mission
  • be friendly, outgoing, and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • maintain excellent customer service
  • be detail oriented
  • be able to stand for long periods of time
  • be able to work in a team environment
  • be willing to commit to a weekly schedule

Job Title:  Thrift Store Cashier’s Assistant

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment.  Scheduled weekly shift.

Shifts: 
Friday, Saturday & 9:30 am – 1:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Sunday 10:30 am – 3:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • assist with bagging/boxing purchases
  • assist customers to their car as needed
  • assist in keeping the store clean & organized
  • assist with open & closing duties
  • ensure sanitation protocol is followed

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and hands-on job training.  You should:

  • be familiar with the WHS mission
  • be friendly, outgoing, and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • maintain excellent customer service
  • be detail oriented
  • be able to stand for long periods of time
  • be able to work independently or in a team environment
  • be willing to commit to a weekly schedule

Job Title:  Thrift Store Floor Monitor

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment.  Scheduled weekly shift.

Shifts: 
Friday, Saturday & 9:30 am – 1:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Sunday 10:30 am – 3:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • greet customers on sales floor
  • answer questions & assist shoppers
  • assist in keeping the store clean & organized
  • help customers to their car as needed
  • restock sale merchandise as needed
  • ensure sanitation protocol is followed

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and hands-on job training.  You should:

  • be familiar with the WHS mission
  • be friendly, outgoing, and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • maintain excellent customer service
  • be detail oriented
  • be able to stand for long periods of time
  • be able to work independently or in a team environment
  • be willing to commit to a weekly schedule

Job Title:  Greeter / Door Monitor

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment.  Scheduled weekly shift.

Shifts: 
Friday, Saturday & 9:30 am – 1:00 pm and 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Sunday 10:30 am – 3:00 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • greet customers at the door
  • manage volume of shoppers entering the shop
  • answer questions & assist shoppers as needed
  • assist in keeping the store clean & organized
  • ensure sanitation protocol is followed

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and hands-on job training.  You should:

  • be familiar with the WHS mission
  • be friendly, outgoing, and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • maintain excellent customer service
  • be able to stand for long periods of time
  • be able to work independently with minimal direction
  • be willing to commit to a weekly schedule

Job Title:  Thrift Store Donation Intake Team

Time Commitment:  Minimum 6-month commitment.  Scheduled weekly shift.

Shifts:  Thursday, Friday & Saturday Only
9:30 am – 1:00 pm
1:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Duties:  You will:

  • assist donors with donation drop-off
  • sort incoming donations
  • clean/wash items as needed
  • do online product research
  • ensure all items are correctly priced
  • assist with markdowns on older merchandise
  • assist with restocking store shelves as needed
  • ensure sanitation protocol is followed

Requirements:  Must be at least 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and hands-on job training.  You should:

  • be familiar with the WHS mission
  • be friendly, outgoing, and comfortable speaking to members of the public
  • be detail oriented
  • be able to stand for long periods of time
  • be able to work in a team environment
  • be willing to commit to a weekly schedule
Wildlife Rehabilitation Center Opportunities

Job Title:  Wildlife Care Assistant

Time Commitment:  Varies Seasonally.  Minimum 3 month commitment, 3 hours/week.  Volunteers are scheduled to work the same shift every week.

Shifts:
April 15th – September 30:  9:00 am–12:00 pm & 4:00 pm–8:00 pm
October 1 – April 14th:  9:00 am-12:00 pm & 2:00 pm-5:00 pm

Duties:  Volunteers will spend much of their time cleaning & preparing cages, doing laundry and dishes, sweeping, mopping and assisting staff with special cleaning projects. In the winter, volunteers assist with weighing and restraining patients as well as feeding/cleaning certain species on their own. In the spring and summer, additional responsibilities of caring for young and juvenile patients may be delegated as needed. This may include: preparing baby orphan food, assisting with feedings, monitoring the health of these patients and keeping all nesting/bedding materials clean.

Experienced volunteers are given the opportunity to learn more advanced animal handling and medical skills.

Job Title:  Wildlife Transport Team

Time Commitment:  Varies Seasonally.  Minimum 3 month commitment.

Shifts:  As needed.  Volunteers are asked to commit to one shift per week.  Transports may or may not be needed on your scheduled day(s).

Duties:  Sometimes people who find injured wildlife are unable to bring the animals to WHS Wildlife Services. Therefore, we need to go out and pick up the animals and transport them back to the center.  Part of this duty includes capturing the animal and putting it securely in a transport carrier.  (Gas mileage cannot be reimbursed but is tax deductible if proper records are kept.) There are also certain patients that must be transferred to other wildlife centers due to lack of room and resources. It is essential that these patients get to the other wildlife in a timely and safe manner. This volunteer opportunity would consist of committing to being “on – call” if a transfer patient arrives; then coming to the Wildlife Center to pick – up the animal who will be already contained.

Job Title:  Wildlife Facility Caretaker

Time Commitment:  Varies Seasonally.  Minimum 3 month commitment.

Shift:  Flexible.  Volunteers will be on call for projects as needed.

Duties:   Painting, building and repairing caging units, clearing brush, cleaning and maintenance of wildlife facilities, minor plumbing & electrical work, and mowing the lawn in the summer months.

 

Other Opportunities

Job Title: Special Events/Fundraising Volunteer

Time Commitment:  Varies.  Hours will increase during peak times before and after events.

Duties:  You will

  • assist with planning and implementation of WHS fundraising and special events
  • participate in assigned projects and tasks such as: solicitations of auction item donations; marketing and poster distribution; data entry; invitation design and mailing; event planning and coordination

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age. Completion of Volunteer Information Session. You should:

  • have excellent “people” skills
  • enjoy planning and working on events
  • be detail oriented
  • be able to work independently with minimal supervision
  • be reliable!

Job Title:  Community Outreach Volunteer

Time Commitment: Varies according to events & projects.  Minimum 6-month commitment.

Duties:  You will:

  • act as an ambassador for WHS
  • attend tabling events at businesses, schools and local festivals
  • educate members of the community on our programs & services
  • answer animal and shelter related questions
  • hand out literature and resources

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and on-the-job training by WHS staff or volunteers.  You should:

  • possess excellent communication skills
  • enjoy interacting with large and diverse groups of people
  • be able to work independently or in a team environment
  • have a concern for and a humane attitude toward the care and treatment of all animals
  • have a firm understanding of what it means to be an open-admission shelter

Job Title:  Humane Education Volunteer

Time Commitment: Varies according to workshops & school schedules.  Minimum 6-month commitment.

Duties:  You will:

  • act as an ambassador for WHS
  • give educational tours of WHS to groups of all ages
  • lead group activities for community service groups
  • assist in teaching children about animal care and handling
  • assist with games & activities in children’s workshops
  • answer animal and shelter related questions

Requirements:  Must be at least 16 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session and on-the-job training by WHS staff or volunteers.  You should:

  • possess excellent communication skills
  • must be comfortable with children of all ages
  • enjoy interacting with large and diverse groups of people
  • be able to work independently or in a team environment
  • have a concern for and a humane attitude toward the care and treatment of all animals
  • have a firm understanding of what it means to be an open-admission shelter

Job Title:  Foster Care Provider

Time Commitment: On-call as needed to provide temporary 24-hour care for orphaned, injured and unweaned animals.  Minimum 6-month commitment.

Duties: You will:

  • provide all elements of care for foster animals including feeding, cleaning, grooming, medicating and socializing
  • ensure safety of foster animal at all times
  • maintain communication with WHS staff regarding the foster animal’s progress
  • provide nurturing and comfortable environment in your home for foster animals
  • transport foster animals to and from the shelter for medical treatments, check-ups and to be shown for adoption

Requirements:  Must be 18 years of age.  Completion of Volunteer Information Session.  One-on-one meeting, training and home check with WHS Foster Care Coordinator. Other education and training as required.  You should:

  • be willing to take animals that may be sick, injured or with behavior issues into your home
  • be able to make the commitment to provide specialized care if needed for short or extended periods
  • be able to work independently, but able to follow exact instructions
  • own your own home or have written permission from your landlord
  • be at least 18 years of age, or work under a parent/guardian in the home
  • be able to administer oral and topical medications