Volunteers are an integral part of the LA/SPCA. Our over 400 volunteers contribute over 21,000 hours of service each year. We could not survive without the dedication, passion, and determination each and every volunteer brings to our organization. We know you'll make a great addition to this incredible group of people.
Volunteers are required to:
- submit an online Volunteer Application which includes a Waiver of Liability as well as an acceptance of the rules and guidelines of the LA SPCA.
- be 18 years of age or older in order to volunteer without supervision. Youth volunteer opportunities are available for ages 12-17. Please see below.
- attend Volunteer Orientation in order to work directly with the adoptable animals at the shelter or during off-site adoption events. Additional volunteer opportunities are available for those who prefer not to attend the Volunteer Orientation.
- represent themselves and the LA SPCA in a professional manner and treat clients with respect.
Volunteers aged 18yrs or older:
Please complete the online volunteer application. No one will be accepted into the program without a completed application on file.
Youth Volunteers aged 15-17yrs:
Becoming a volunteer requires dedication, commitment, initiative, hard work and patience. In order to ensure all of our animals receive the best volunteer attention, youth volunteer applicants will be invited for an interview prior to being accepted into the program. In addition to the standard volunteer application, a separate Youth Application is required. Youth Applications can be emailed or faxed to Dionne at 504-368-3710.
Youth Application (15-18 yrs)
Team Volunteers aged 12-14yrs plus a parent or guardian:
The Team Volunteer program allows a youth aged 12-14yrs to volunteer along with their parent or guardian (18yrs of age of older). Both team members must attend a volunteer orientation and remain together whether at the Animal Rescue and Care Center or at an event.
Team Application (12-14 yrs)
For additional information on how your son or daughter can become involved with the LA/SPCA please visit our Humane Education section.
frequently asked questions about volunteering
What sort of volunteer opportunities does the LA SPCA offer?
Client-Care at the Shelter
Assist visitors as they look for a new companion. Explain the policies and procedures of adoption to potential adopters and assist them with necessary paperwork.
Off-site Adoption Team
Assist with bathing and transporting adoptable animals. Set-up and breakdown off-site location. Talk with prospective adopters while they choose a new companion, helping them find a pet that fits their lifestyle. Explain the policies and procedures of adopting from the LA/SPCA and have them fill out all necessary paperwork, including the adoption contract. Collect adoption fees. Off-site events are 100% volunteer driven.
Web Pet and Printed Publications Project
Take pictures of the adoptable animals for our Web site, as well as various other outlets; including Craigslist, Gambit Weekly, Petfinder.com. Write descriptions based on personal interaction with pet, feedback from staff, and information gained at animal intake.
Provide temporary in-home care for special needs animals, or dogs awaiting transport to another adoption facility.
Work directly with the animals at the shelter. Exercising and socializing the animals is very important to their mental health. Companion animals suffer without companionship. Due to the volume of animals at the LA/SPCA staff has precious few minutes to commit to this basic need.
Occasionally we may need assistance with carpentry, painting and other miscellaneous fix-it projects. Also, in an effort to beautify our location and create a more adoptable environment, landscaping and grounds work are occasional areas of need as well.
Community Outreach and Humane Education
Show & Tail school program (Not Available to Teams) Take your dog into the classroom and teach children the basics of animal safety and responsible pet guardianship. Must be available during the week and possibly some weekends, depending on requests, and own a dog with a tolerance for large groups of small children. If you do not own an appropriate dog we will provide a puppy for you to take to the classroom.
Information Circulation Booth
Set-up and literature distribution at local community events, education fairs and exhibits. Distribution and maintenance of LA/SPCA info at local pet stores & libraries. Obedience "Wrangler" (Not Available to Teams) Assist Dog Obedience instructor and students before and during training classes.
Pre-event committees and day-of event opportunities.
Volunteer with the LA/SPCA Development Team aiding with designing, organizing or implementing fund raising details or events. Professional organized individuals with any of the following skills are very welcome to work on projects: data management, computer skills, community relations/contacts, and phone or writing skills. There are multiple ways to put your talents and skills to great use with volunteer fund raising; still not sure, feel free to contact us.
Take candid digital pictures of dog obedience students, events, off-site adoption days, volunteers at shelter, staff at shelter, etc. Must have high-quality digital camera and ability to place pictures on a CD and mail to shelter. Pictures will be used on our Web site, Facebook, annual report, etc.
Assist staff with office duties including answering the phone, inputting information into the computer, directing questions about animal care and animal control to the proper department and answering questions about shelter policy and procedures.
Volunteers needed to assist Communications Director in marketing campaigns, street team outreach, and media campaigns
Graphic Design Qualified graphic designers needed on occasion to design signage, brochures, fliers.
The LA/SPCA engages with donors, volunteers, and general supporters through Facebook and Twitter. If you are interested in helping us engage your peers let us know.
Veterinary Clinic and Mobile Outreach Center
Qualified Vet-Techs may assist with Vet-Tech duties, cleaning kennels, feeding animals and greet/assist clients on an as needed basis. (Must be approved by clinic)
Writers and Wordsmiths
Polished professionals needed for a variety of writing opportunities on an "as-needed" basis.
How do I become an LA SPCA volunteer?
The first step in becoming an LA SPCA volunteer is to complete our online Volunteer Application. Once your application has been reviewed and approved, you may sign up for one of our Volunteer Orientations.
What does the Volunteer Orientation involve?
Once your application has been processed, you will be invited to attend Volunteer Orientation. This is an important first step in becoming an LA/SPCA volunteer. We will review the basics of animal care and shelter policies. Orientation is generally held on Saturdays from 9am-12noon and/or 1pm to 4pm at the Animal Rescue and Care Center on LA/SPCA's campus.
A $30 orientation feewill be collected during class. This fee covers a leash, apron, and name tag. You will use these tools while volunteering with us. Once we receive your completed online application we will contact you to reserve your space. Dates are listed here, but are subject to change. We can't wait to work with you!
Is it possible for me to volunteer with the LA SPCA without attending the Volunteer Orientation?
While we strongly recommend that all volunteers attend the Volunteer Orientation in order to participate in the widest range of volunteer opportunities, we understand that not everyone is willing or able to attend the orientation. If you have not attended the orientation, you may still volunteer at information booths, with youth and community educational outreach, special events as well as many other opportunties. However, if you do not attend the Volunteer Orientation you will not be able to work directly with the animals either at the LA SPCA shelter location or at off-site adoption events.
Does the LA SPCA provide group volunteer opportunities?
We can accommodate large group requests. A sample of activities our groups have completed is below. If a trip to the shelter is not convenient review this list of Service Learning opportunities.
For a corporate or community group please contact Dionne at 504-368-5191 ext 142 or email Dionne@la-spca.org.
For a school or any group under 18 yrs please contact Sadie at 504-368-5191 ext 207 or email Sadie@la-spca.org.
Past group activities:
Gardening: weeding, raking, and picking up litter on LA/SPCA's campus
Administration: making packets of information, making copies, participating in phone banks
Fundraising: creating competitions between classes
Animal Enrichment: making Kongs for the dogs to enjoy, crafting bandanas for the animals to wear, putting cat nip treats together
Other: Unfolding newspaper
I need to fulfill community service hours. May I perform these hours at the LA SPCA?
Steps for registering for Community Service:
- Please call the Community Service Coordinator at 504-368-5191, ext. 215. The Community Service Coordinator will assess whether you are eligible to complete hours at the facility.
- If approved, you will come to our location Monday - Friday between the hours of 9am - 5pm to register (NO WEEKEND REGISTRATION).
- Please be sure to bring any court papers that were given to you regarding Community Service hours and a photo ID.
- Duties will involve primarily janitorial support (unfolding newspapers for cat cages, stuffing kongs for dogs, cleaning facility, etc.)