How do I get started?

Special Event Volunteers:

We are always looking for reliable volunteers to help plan and run our off-site events. There is no class requirement or minimum age for these opportunities—just let us know that you would like to help!

Animal Volunteers:

To be eligible to volunteer with the animals at DCHS you must be at least 12 years old and complete the following:

  • Read the Volunteer Handbook and sign the last page indicating that you have read and understand the information included in the packet (if you are under 18 you will need a parent's signature).
  • Turn in the completed last page of the handbook, volunteer application, and social media agreement.
  • Once the documents have been reviewed by DCHS and you are approved, you will be contacted to sign up for the next Volunteer Orientation Class (if you have a conflict you may sign up for the next available class instead).
  • Classes are typically held on the third Sunday of each month at 11:00 am unless there is a conflict with a special event or holiday.
  • There is a class fee of $20 ($15 for active students in Dunn County). This fee helps cover the cost of your volunteer t-shirt and the time of staff to conduct the class.
  • All volunteers under the age of 16 must have a parent/legal guardian (who has also completed the volunteer training) with them at all times and follow the procedures outlined at the orientation class (one parent/guardian per child).

Visit this page for more information on Volunteer Orientation Classes.

Frequently Asked Questions

We often get asked the following questions about our volunteer program:

  • Why do I have to take a class to volunteer? The class is required for your safety and the safety of animals in our care. Many of the dogs we have at the shelter are larger and knowing how to properly interact with them, ensures a positive experience for you and our dogs. All the cats in our care are strays, often times they are sweet and friendly, but do not have refined social skills. The class teaches safe animal interaction and animal body language.
  • Why do you charge for the volunteer class? We charge for the volunteer class to cover the cost of the volunteer t-shirts and the time for staff to conduct the training.

Thanks again for you interest, volunteers are a great way for you to share your best gifts with the community!

Never volunteered before? A little apprehensive? Learn more about volunteering in general with this helpful guide!

**Please note, the process and opportunities for court-ordered community service differ from the above. Please stop by the shelter to fill out a court-ordered community service application. We retain the right to refuse applicants based on the nature of the offense and will verify applicant information with officers of the court.