If you like animals and are an organized person, you should consider volunteering at a veterinary hospital like Stewartstown Vet Services or others. Depending on the season, many veterinary hospitals and shelters have much more work than the staff can easily handle. The personnel at these facilities will train you to learn the tasks that they need to have completed. Once they are familiar with your talents, capabilities, and available schedule they may even save tasks for you to complete. Here are some of the tasks and assignments that may be available at a veterinary hospital or animal shelter:
- Dog Walker - Walking and exercising the dogs that are boarded at veterinary hospitals and shelters is a fun and very worthwhile activity. As a volunteer, you are allowed to interface directly with the dogs and get to know each of their individual personalities. While giving these dogs some much-needed exercise, you will have an opportunity to teach them quick commands and involve them in very important obedience training. This task is an important part of keeping an animal socialized and well prepared to be adopted.
- Office Clerical Work - There is always plenty of clerical work that a volunteer can do. You many be asked to help send out bills and correspondence, or make phone calls to confirm upcoming appointments and request payments for services rendered. You can also work in the reception area greeting incoming dogs and their owners and helping them fill out forms for available services. Taking care of these tasks allows the hospital staff to concentrate on other tasks such as advertising, website updates, and publications.
- Organizing the Medical and Other Supply Areas - A volunteer may be asked to take inventory of the medical supplies, paper goods, food, and medications that are stored in the hospital and to order more supplies as needed. Keeping these areas well-stocked and organized, is of great help to the veterinary doctors and other staff members.
- Dog Grooming - Dogs who are boarded or healing from veterinary procedures need to be kept clean. Dogs are bathed in deep stainless steel sinks with warm running water. Dogs are usually tied by a tether to an overhead structure so that they can keep their heads up while being bathed, dried and brushed. As a volunteer, you may be asked to assist the veterinarian by holding a dog's tether while he has his toenails clipped or teeth descaled of tartar.
- Birds - Veterinarians that care for birds may have cage cleaning tasks that a volunteer can do. This usually involves changing a paper lining on the bottom of the cage, cleaning bird perches, and filling food and water cups. Birds are very intelligent so you may be asked to talk to them to keep them calm while you clean their cages.
These ongoing tasks must be tackled daily, weekly, or monthly in veterinary hospitals and animal shelters. If you are good at organization, you may be asked to come by for a few hours each week to volunteer your services. Your help will be greatly appreciated by the veterinarians and staff members who work at these facilities. While there is no monetary reward for volunteering at a veterinary hospital or animal shelter, the satisfaction that you get from helping is priceless.