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Sign Up to Volunteer

You can learn about pet care, make new friends that share a passion for animals, and have tons of fun, all while making a positive impact on the lives of animals.

We welcome volunteers who would like to donate their time and are interested in making a difference. Your participation and fresh ideas can help toward finding forever loving homes for all abandoned dogs and cats.

All volunteers receive training and orientation. There are many volunteer positions you may be interested in helping with.

For more information on volunteering, email the volunteer coordinator.

  • Eligibility & Requirements

    • Volunteers must be 16 years of age or older (or 15 if volunteering with a parent or adult volunteer).
    • Commit to a requirement of 6 month 100 hours
    • Must pass a criminal history background check provided by ASD. Volunteers 15 years old will have the background check done along with their parent or legal guardian.
    • Be able to effectively communicate in the English language.
    • Complete and return the volunteer application.
    • Attend a volunteer orientation
    • Adhere to the volunteer dress code (long khaki pants, closed-toe shoes, and volunteer t-shirt that will be provided).

    Volunteers of all abilities are welcome at Miami-Dade County Animal Services Department. We provide various opportunities at differing skill levels to ensure all volunteers are engaged. Such opportunities include, but are not limited to, administrative support, adoption counselor, bather/groomer, canine/feline enrichment, clinic support, customer service greeter, and kennel assistant. Most volunteer activities that involve direct animal contact require bending, stooping, and the ability to lift 50 pounds.   

    As such, volunteers working independently and in direct contact with our animals must successfully complete volunteering requirements, i.e., orientation and training and receive a positive recommendation concerning their ability to work with animals. Additionally, because there is no way to predict, with certainty, how an animal will behave or interact with volunteers, for the safety of all volunteers, staff, and the animals under our care, volunteers must be able to monitor visual and auditory cues which may indicate that an animal may pose a danger.

    Volunteers who do not meet the criteria for independent volunteering are still permitted to work directly with our animals. However, they must be accompanied by a personal assistant, an adult family member, friend, or professional aide, who has successfully completed the volunteering requirements and is capable of assisting the volunteer.

  • Donations

    Each year, over 27,000 animals are abandoned at Animal Services. We work tirelessly to reunite our shelter pets with their owners, find them new homes and work with over 50 rescue groups and partners who help us save as many animals as possible.

    While they are with us at Animal Services, we try to make pets as comfortable as possible. Your financial contributions will help us continue to do that.

    If you would like to donate materials to shelter dogs and cats, you can drop off donations at Animal Services.

    Donations for both dogs and cats

    • Blankets
    • Towels
    • Plastic pet carriers
    • Flea medication for dogs and cats
    • Toys suitable for sanitizing

    Donations for dogs

    • Dog shampoo
    • KMR Powder puppy milk
    • Adult dog food (unopened)
    • Nutracal
    • Human-size baby bottles for puppies
    • Dog toys suitable for sanitizing (no toys made of material, feathers, or toys with string, yarn, ribbons, or small parts that can be swallowed)
    • Dog leashes and collars of all sizes
    • Frontline Plus for dogs of all sizes
    • Dog sweaters
    • Puppy housebreaking pads
    • Bath mats
    • Dog beds
    • Fine-tooth combs and tweezers for tick removal
    • Puppy wipes
    • Treat bags

    Donations for cats

    • Kitten baby bottles
    • KMR Powder Kitten Milk
    • Adult cat food
    • Heating pads for neonates
    • Advantage for cats
    • Cat toys suitable for sanitizing (no toys made of material, catnip, feathers, or toys with string, yarn, ribbons, or small parts that can be swallowed)
    • Shoe boxes
    • Grooming wipes
  • Orientation Sessions

    The two-hour volunteer orientation sessions are held at the following times and locations:

    Pet Adoption and Protection Center

    • Every Saturday at 10 a.m.
    • The first and third Thursday of every month at 5 p.m.

    Petco Adoption Center- 6200 South Dixie Hwy

    Miami-Dade County provides equal access and equal opportunity in its programs, services and activities and does not discriminate on the basis of disability. For material in alternate format, a sign language interpreter or other accommodation, please call 305-375-1293 or send email to: clerkbcc@miamidade.gov at least five days in advance of the meeting.

  • Volunteer Positions

    Job descriptions for Volunteer Positions at Animal Services:

    Adoption Counselor
    Adoption counselors greet customers, answer questions and show pets to prospective adopters.

    Animal Care
    Care for shelter animals by feeding and grooming them, cleaning cages and assisting with various kennel duties.

    Bather
    Volunteers wash dogs prior to surgery and as needed. Bathing dogs in a gentle manner also helps them remain calm, socialized and feel much better!

    Clinic Support
    Support the Health Care Staff in giving medications and assisting vet techs on the daily functions.

    Dog/Cat Enrichment
    Pet loving volunteers are needed to exercise, walk and socialize adoptable shelter pets.   

    Education Outreach
    Provide education regarding animal issues (spay or neuter, local county ordinances, general pet care, behavior issues) to the public. Tour Guide volunteers are also needed.

    Felix Varela High Veterinary Program
    Students enrolled in the veterinary program can volunteer without a parent or guardian. Enrollment needs to be confirmed by teacher.

    Mobile Adoptions
    Take adoption animals out into the community to meet the public, and perhaps their new family! Mobile adoption locations include pet stores, parks, etc.

    Pet Detectives
    Review lost and found ads, escort citizens searching for lost pets to restricted areas of the shelter and provide information packets.  

    Photographer Assistant
    Assist photographers by bringing selected pets to be photographed.

    Puppy Foster Care
    Provide temporary home care for puppies who are not yet ready for adoption due to age. For those who are willing to open up their homes and hearts, fostering is one of the most rewarding experiences you will ever have. It saves lives.

    Rescue
    Assist rescue coordinators by taking pets to clinic to be checked, etc.   

    Shelter Ambassador
    Volunteers with excellent customer service skills and outreach can be trained to be a voice for our shelter by assisting the Volunteer Coordinator.

    Special Events
    Assist in the planning of events and securing supplies and donations.

Phone Number(s)

Email / Mail

Locations and Hours

  • Pet Adoption and Protection Center

    3599 NW 79 Avenue, Doral, FL 33122
    Monday
    10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
    Tuesday
    10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
    Wednesday
    10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
    Thursday
    10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
    Friday
    10:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
    Saturday
    8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
    Sunday
    8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Related Services

Animal Services
Alex Munoz, Director

Pet Adoption and Protection Center
3599 NW 79 Avenue, Doral, FL 33122
311 | pets@miamidade.gov311 | pets@miamidade.gov

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