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Shelter Volunteer Requirements

*OC Animal Care is unable to accommodate court ordered volunteer service at this time. For possible assistance, please visit our More Volunteer/Intern Opportunities page.*

Age Requirement

To volunteer on-site at OC Animal Care you must be at least 18 years old. If you are under the age of 18 and are interested in learning how you can get involved, please visit the youth volunteer section of our website.

Time Commitment

OC Animal Care requests that you commit to a minimum of 8 hours per month for at least 3 consecutive months. This commitment ensures that the program will operate smoothly and that the maximum benefit is provided to the animals.


OC Animal Care requires that all potential volunteers go through an extensive orientation, selection, and training process. This process ensures that OC Animal Care is selecting volunteers that best fit the needs of the program and understand the unique environment in which they will work. The recruitment process may take up to two months. Applicants will be selected based on the current needs of OC Animal Care.

Volunteer Acceptance Process

• Submit background check consent & online application (prior to orientation)
• Submit letter of intent (due one week after orientation)
• Background checks & letters of intent are assessed (3 - 14 days)
• Volunteers are notified of acceptance
• Volunteers attend training at the shelter
• Volunteers are now in good standing and may begin volunteering

Specialized Volunteer Requirements 

Those interested in volunteering who may have special needs (or a job coach/shadow) must contact the Volunteer Program Coordinator prior to Orientation.  Though we do our best to accommodate those with special needs or handicaps, our unique volunteering opportunities require certain abilities to maintain the safety of our animals, staff, public and other volunteers. Special volunteer requirements must be discussed with the volunteer program coordinator on a case by case basis prior to Orientation. 

We can provide special orientations for those who cannot ambulate up a flight of stairs. Please contact the Volunteer Program Coordinator if you have special mobility needs. Please be aware that some parts of the shelter are not conducive to wheel chair access and this may limit the areas you are able to volunteer in safely.

How can you get started?

To be considered for OC Animal Care’s volunteer program, you must first attend a volunteer orientation meeting. An RSVP is required in order to attend an orientation.
Please visit our upcoming orientations page for important orientation information.