spcaLA Volunteer FAQ

How do I apply to be a volunteer?
You can pick up an application at the volunteer information session of your choosing.

What is the time commitment for spcaLA volunteers?
spcaLA volunteers are required to volunteer for at least one (1) year and commit to a schedule of two hours per week.

Can I volunteer without the one-year commitment?
spcaLA counts on our volunteers to provide consistent services for the animals and people we serve. Are you completing a school or club project? A community service project – like organizing a neighborhood pet food drive – may be right for you. Please view our open volunteer opportunities for more information.

How old do I need to be to volunteer?
If you wish to volunteer alone, you must be 18 years or older. If you are between the ages of 12 to 17, you can volunteer with an adult. Your adult teammate must also submit a volunteer application, complete all volunteer trainings and supervise you every time you volunteer.

What do I need to do to apply as a youth volunteer?

  • With the support and permission of your parents or guardians, sign up for an info session.
  • Designate an adult volunteer teammate & ask that person to attend the info session with you.
  • With the support and permission of your parents or guardians, complete the Youth Volunteer Application.
  • Submit the Youth Volunteer Application & the general Volunteer Application.

If your adult teammate is not a parent or guardian, your parent or guardian will have to sign a release allowing a different adult to accompany you to volunteer.

What can I do as a volunteer?
Almost anything! spcaLA Volunteers help with a wide range of tasks and are an important part of our organization. Do you have special skills like photography, event management, or programming? Let us know! We are always in need of a variety of talents.

I just want to walk dogs, can I do that?
At spcaLA, we do more than walk dogs. We work for the animals and with the animals, to help our shelter pets thrive in a shelter environment while teaching them skills they will need to be adopted and stay in a home. To work with dogs, you will start by learning and practicing enrichment techniques from outside their dens, and then progress to working with the dogs on basic training and obedience. Please view our robust volunteer training program here.

Where can I volunteer?
It depends on what volunteer opportunities in which you would like to participate. Would you prefer to volunteer at the shelter with animals, in the community, or support spcaLA’s work “behind the scenes?” If you’d like to volunteer with animals in one of our shelters, click here to see our shelter locations. If you don’t live nearby though, we can still use your help at special events throughout the greater Los Angeles area, or even as a Foster volunteer!

Do I need to know anything special to be an spcaLA Volunteer?
Not necessarily! We are here to support our volunteers. We provide you with a rich training program, so you will feel comfortable and confident performing a wide range of volunteer tasks.

Is spcaLA no-kill?
spcaLA does not euthanize animals for time or space, but if an animal’s healthcare is beyond our ability to provide, or if he is or becomes aggressive, we may make the decision to humanely euthanize. Please read more about no-kill here.

I love animals, but I’m allergic – do you have any volunteer opportunities for me?
Absolutely! Perhaps you can provide administrative assistance at any of our three facilities, help with special events off-site or work with youth in our Humane Education department!

I have been mandated to perform community service, can I do it at spcaLA?
spcaLA cannot accommodate court-mandated community service. Likewise, we are unable to verify hours for off-site community service projects.

Do you background check volunteers?
Yes, those who will work with children must be background checked and fingerprinted through the Department of Justice.

Is there an application fee to volunteer?
We do not have an application fee, however, we do ask for a $10 fee to cover the costs of volunteer supplies (official apron & ID badge), after you have completed your Volunteer Orientation.