Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all new dog and front desk volunteer training classes have been suspended indefinitely. We look forward to accepting new volunteers once we are able. Cat training classes will be held in very limited numbers, for local residents only. See our cat training website for more information as classes are scheduled.
We not only need volunteers to take care of the day-to-day care of the PAWS dogs, we also need floor volunteers to work with the public and pair them up with their new best friend. Our wonderful dogs are in search of canine lovers who can walk individuals through the dog wing and talk about their personalities, preferences, and what home would suit them most perfectly. Floor Volunteers work alongside our Adoption Counselors who actually process applications and complete adoptions. If you're interested in ultimately helping with adoptions, sign up for training to become a Floor Volunteer to get your feet wet.
If you are an existing dog care volunteer, we offer a shortened version of this training combined with a mentor experience at the Sunday showings for those interested in also being an Floor Volunteer. Dates for these classes are also on the training calendar below. Click on the training date for information on how to sign up. You must register in advance.
Information about the training process:
- Training takes place in 2-3 parts:
- Part 1: you’ll have training with our Adoption Assistant and go over the basics of working with our dogs and working with the public, followed immediately by a mentor shift to gain "hands on" experience. This is a separate training from Dog Care Training. If you are interested in working more hands-on with the dogs, please see our Dog Care Training Information page.
- Parts 2: You'll shadow a Dog Care volunteer for 1 hour another day, to help you gain comfort in handling or our resident dogs. You can sign up for additional mentor shifts, or begin volunteering on your own once your mentor shifts are complete.
- Part 3 (optional): You also have the option to shadow a floor volunteer during our Sunday foster showing. This is not required for all floor volunteers, but if you want to help out on Sundays, this mentoring is needed.
- Youth volunteers who are at least 13 years old, are welcome to sign up to work as Floor Volunteers during our 12-2 foster dog showings every Sunday.
- The minimum commitment expectation for volunteers is approximately 30 hours per year (1 shift per month on average). In cases where courses are full, we prioritize scheduling volunteers who can commit to at least weekly volunteer shifts. Weekly (regular) volunteers get the most out of their volunteering and tend to form close relationships with the animals in our care and the other volunteers.
- If you are interested in volunteering for community service and are completing less than 30 volunteer hours, please visit our Community Service Volunteers page.
- If you have special needs considerations, please visit our Special Needs Volunteers page.
Steps to Request Registration for Dog Floor Volunteer Training
- First, please fill out the Volunteer Application online here.
- Next, please consult the calendar below for training dates, and click on an available training date to begin registration for a class using the form provided on the calendar date. You will then receive a reply from our Dog Adoption Assistant asking any follow-up questions and they will confirm if you are registered.
- You are not registered for a class until you receive the confirmation email.
- All volunteers must preregister for a training date. We are currently not taking any walk-ins during our training sessions.