Volunteers are a critical part of the Oakland Animal Services team. Our volunteers work closely with the public, provide adoption counseling and socialize animals. Volunteers must have good communication skills, an ability to provide excellent customer service and be committed to volunteering at least 2 hours a week for 6 months. If you are available to commit a significant number of hours for fewer months (e.g. 8 hours a week for 3 months), please reach out to find out if we can arrange something that works. Our trainings take place during the week or on the weekend to accommodate most schedules. We are excited to have you on the team!
Steps to become an OAS Volunteer:
- Attend an Open House (~1.5 hours). We can’t wait to tell you all the great things our volunteers are doing to help the pets and public who enter the doors at Oakland Animal Services! During the Open House we will tell you about a variety of ways volunteers are contributing to our shelter. We want to make the best match for your talents and there are so many ways to assist our team. Note: If you do not see any available “Open House” appointments please contact us at and we will notify you when we have more openings.
- Complete a volunteer application. You will receive the application when you attend the Open House. Volunteers must be at least 18 years old.
- Upon receipt and review of the application you can sign up to attend a “Working with the Public Workshop” (~1.5 hour). This workshop will be an introduction to common scenarios that volunteers encounter when they are at the shelter and our volunteer team will coach you on best practices. The workshop allows both you and us to determine if you are a good fit for a volunteer program that relies on volunteers to be the public face of the shelter. This will also be an opportunity for us to determine the best way we can utilize your skills!
- Upon approval to proceed to hands-on training, you will be given the opportunity to train with a volunteer mentor to progressively add skills needed to volunteer in the chosen animal specialty. Since the shelter has a mixed population of stray, confiscated and adoptable animals, your aptitude will be evaluated during the training to ensure safety for our animals, staff and other volunteers. Trainings with mentors are two-hour sessions and you will need to successfully complete two to four sessions before you can be autonomous.
- Meet with the Volunteer Program Manager to officially join the volunteer program so you can volunteer independently.
- Volunteer regularly!
- Enjoy and tell your friends to join the team!!!
Questions? Contact us at .