Volunteering At A Pet Shelter

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How Do I Volunteer At A Pet Charity?

Volunteering at a pet shelter, pet charity shop or helping out at pet charity head offices and local events is one of the most satisfying and rewarding volunteer jobs as you help to make animals lives better for them.

There are thousands of volunteers up and down the country helping large and small animal charities who would not be able to assist as many strays, unwanted pets that they take in each year at shelters without volunteers.

Three large charities, for example –

The RSPCA suggest they care for more than 110,000 animals each year and could not do this without the public’s support and generosity and that includes carers and helpers who can donate some of their valuable time each week to their favourite cause. They look after pets but also help many different types of animals, including horses, farm animals and exotic pets back into caring owners homes.

The Cats Protection League help more than 200,00 cats each year and have a diverse range of volunteering opportunities available, all over the UK. Opportunities exist volunteer help with social media or calling the public for fundraising their projects, helping in local shelters and charity shops.

The PDSA have opportunities helping out at their 48 hospitals as well as helping out at local charity shops.

The opportunities to get involved with are wide ranging.

Applying to your local pet charity

Once you have established how much time you have to donate, where some charities are delighted that you may wish to help them with just an hour a week, then approaching your local animal charity is the next step. You possibly already know where it is, but if you don’t a simple yell.com search online will give you all the details of your local pet and animal charities nearby. A check on the charity’s website should provide all the information you need to apply.

If you are a student, then you can even complete your Duke Of Edinburgh Award programme with the larger charities which can help to prepare you for a career with animals, higher education courses and even animal related university degrees courses.

Volunteering helps if you want to gain expert animal knowledge which can be used to support applications to all kinds of pet related jobs, including retail stores.

The big charities are big pet businesses receiving millions of pounds in income yearly and are professional pet keepers.

Covid-19 has brought about many changes including the way charities are working and operating. Certain services currently may not be available, however, there are still volunteering opportunities available. Check your preferred charity website for these updates.

You can read how thousands of generous Pet Check readers are donating their unwanted items to pet charities

How Can You Help Pet Charities?

Recycle for pets, donate unwanted items to pet charities, charity dog walks, pet shelter volunteers pet lotteries, pet charity shops. Sponsor an animal. Gift Aid, UK’s pet and animal charities caring for the nation dogs, cats, pets, Read more. Petcheck.blog Blog


Personal statement by Susie, a volunteer

“Having made a number of online searches, then calling pet shelter telephone numbers, this didn’t really get me through to their general office, presuming that everyone was busy working with the animals. So carefully composed a short email with some basics details about myself and sent it off suggesting the days that may be possible and hours free offering to volunteer”.

Within a couple of hours a very courteous message was returned with an online short form to complete. This was sent back, the same afternoon and next day, made my way to a short interview.

Wearing casual clothes and trainers, I volunteered to start that day and met a team of three people who would supervise me in allsorts of pet things.

I was put onto helping with the preparation of animal meals, mostly giving these to the puppies and dogs in care, some were on special diets and had to be chosen with care available from the large range of foods stocked, making sure water bowls were cleaned and fresh water replenished after the pets had finished their meals. It took me hours!

Over the next few weeks I worked almost full time and learnt not just the practicalities but much about the legal paperwork associated with pet care and the veterinary care provided. I learnt about The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, and the problems around ‘Specially Control Dogs’ known as banned breeds. There was the Animal Welfare Act 2006, particularly with its five points of care individuals are duty to provide welfare to their pets, and the 2016 compulsory microchipping of dogs. You can read more about this –

What Pet Laws Are There In The UK?

The UK’s pet laws, Rules and Codes that help to keep pets safe and healthy. #pettheft Reform updates, Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Act 2021, Hitting An Animal Whilst Driving, Fireworks, PSPO’s, Harness Pets Travelling, Dog waking Countryside Code, Banned Dog breeds, Pet ID tags, Renting with pets. Microchipping and helpful Pet GPS Trackers. Petcheck.blog Blog

The pet shelter was a member of the  The Association of Dogs’ and Cats’ Homes. The pet shelter followed the protocol as a registered member providing professional standards not just to the pets in their care, but the new owners of the rehomed pets and the staff and volunteers who assisted the animal shelter.

It was wonderful to see how some pets that had been abandoned picked themselves up when offered some one-on-one time and loving care, regained their health, and were rehomed usually in a matter of a couple of weeks. There were sadly just a handful of dogs that had been residents a lot longer, mostly due to behaviour problems that were slowly improving.

The charity received financial donations, as well as practical donations such as bowls, blankets, toys and food. Their fundraising was strong, not just online, but also running a local charity shop for visual high street presence and needed funds.

New adopters had the appropriate check made about themselves and pets could only be released once they were back into optimum health. If dogs and some cats hadn’t been microchipped then, this was done by an expert before they left the shelter.

The volunteers worked in small teams and were very friendly, where we’ve stayed friends even though I have now left and set up my small pet dog walking business, the experience gained was invaluable”.

Please note these are the personal statements and views of Susie and are not necessarily endorsed by Pet Check Blog.

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