**Effective immediately, GHS has cancelled all volunteers shifts until further notice. Please check out COVID-19 Updates page for more information.**
Together we make a difference. Volunteer.
The work of our dedicated volunteers contributes to our goals in making every day special for the deserving pets who are waiting to find loving homes and so much more! Join the hundreds of people just like you who dedicate their time and efforts to helping animals in need.
What are the requirements to volunteer at GHS?
Volunteers are so important in order for us to save as many animals as we do every year! From high school students to senior citizens, Guelph Humane Society welcomes community members who are dependable and have a sincere desire to share their time. In addition to our volunteer roles listed below, there are also volunteer opportunities for:
- High School Students
- One Day Groups
- Corporate Team Day
We do have a few requirements for you to volunteer with us:
1) Must be 16 years or older (Grade 9 or above for Youth Leader Volunteers).
2) Must be able to volunteer for six consecutive months minimum.
3) Must be able to commit to the role’s required time commitment.
4) Must not miss more than three consecutive shifts or six shifts total in the first six months of volunteering.
5) For certain roles, we may require you to submit a criminal record check at your own expense.
Currently our volunteer roles are limited but we encourage you take a look at all the volunteer roles below and keep checking back!
There are other opportunities to hang out with animals, like our Junior Humane Club!
Administrative Assistant (NOT RECRUITING)
The Administrative Assistance role includes a wide range of duties that can include preparing adoption folders, helping with filing, mailing letters, writing cats’ names on our adoption board – the list goes on and on!
Volunteers best suited for this role will be organized, have clean penmanship and work well independently.
This role does not currently have a scheduled shift. Volunteer hours will depend on available tasks.
Canine Cleaner (NOT RECRUITING)
Canine Cleaning involves cleaning out the dog kennels, washing and sanitizing them and making them cozy again for the next night. This role also involves washing the dishes and other odd jobs that help tidy up the place for the day! Don’t think if you commit to this role, you won’t get to spend time with the dogs. Canine cleaners can help walk and socialize dogs after the cleaning is all done!
Volunteers best suited for this role will be efficient workers that do well working as a team and independently.
This role requires a commitment to a weekly 2-hour shift. Shifts are 9am-11am, Monday through Sunday.
Canine Companion (NOT RECRUITING)
Canine Companions come into the shelter to walk dogs and potentially play with them in the playpen, so they can get some nice outdoor time!
Volunteers best suited for this role will have experience with different dog personalities and have a general understanding of canine body language.
This role requires a commitment to a weekly 2-hour shift. Shifts are every two hours from 10am-close, Monday through Sunday (for closing hours, please see “Hours of Operation”).
Event Volunteer (NOT RECRUITING)
*Orientations are postponed until further notice*
The Events role holds a variety of different duties to accommodate many different interests. This role can involve things such as planning and advertising events beforehand, setting up for the event and cleaning up, helping out during the event, joining a planning committee for large events. With a wide variety of different events, the duties during the event can range anywhere from educating members of the public about the Guelph Humane Society to caring for and managing the animals at an Adoption Event!
This volunteer role can suit almost anyone depending on what interests you most! Event Volunteers attend an orientation.
This role does not have a time commitment. Volunteers shifts will be posted through the volunteer portal as event help is needed.
Feline Cleaner (NOT RECRUITING)
Feline Cleaning involves spot-cleaning the cat cages and refreshing their litter, food and water. This role also involves cleaning the cages of the small animals, mopping and cleaning the dishes. For those interested in socializing cats, Feline Cleaners are always welcome to snuggle some cats once all the cleaning is complete!
Volunteers best suited for this role will be efficient workers and work well independently.
This role requires a commitment to a weekly 2-hour shift. Shifts are 830am-1030am, Monday through Sunday.
Feline Friend (NOT RECRUITING)
Feline Friends come into the shelter to socialize with the cats! Some cats like gentle pets in their cage, while others might like to snuggle on a lap in one of our cozy chairs.
Volunteers best suited for this role will have experience with cats and a general understanding of feline body language.
This role does require a commitment to a weekly shift. Volunteer hours are from 11am-close.
General Repair Person (NOT RECRUITING)
The General Repair Person role includes a wide variety of duties that can range from minor plumbing and building projects to panting and fixing door knobs. This is a great role for a retired individual or someone working part-time looking for a hobby!
Volunteers best suited for this role will have a background in maintenance work.
This role does not have a time commitment. Volunteers will be contacted as needs arise.
PetSmart Cat Helper (NOT RECRUITING)
PetSmart Helpers will travel to PetSmart on Silvercreek Parkway N, in Guelph, to socialize the cats there, tidy up and do light cleaning. PetSmart Helpers may also be asked to transport cats to or from the shelter, as needed, during their volunteer shift.
Volunteers best suited for this role will have experience with cats, work independently and talk with potential adopters about the cats, when necessary.
This role requires a commitment to a weekly 1-hour shift. There is flexibility in the day and time of the shift.
Small Animal Socializer (NOT RECRUITING)
Small Animal Socializers come into the shelter to socialize with the small animals. This can include spending time with a rabbit in a small playpen while she stretches her legs or handling a hamster while he crawls in your hands.
Volunteers best suited for this role will be calm and gentle, and work well independently.
This role does not currently require a commitment to a weekly shift. Volunteer hours are from 11am-close.
Wildlife Driver (NOT RECRUITING)
Wildlife Drivers transport wild animals to rehabilitation centers outside Guelph. Wildlife remain contained in a secure box and require a calm, stress-free ride with no handling at all.
Volunteers best suited for this role will have their own vehicle and a valid driver’s license.
In the busy season (May-September), volunteers are required to sign-up for a weekly/bi-weekly driving shift. Shifts will be scheduled in either the morning or afternoon and volunteers should generally expect drives ~3-4 hours in length (round-trip). From October-April, there is no commitment for this role; volunteers will receive an email when a driver is needed.
Youth Leaders (NOT RECRUITING)
The Guelph Humane Society needs Youth Leader volunteers for our Summer Critter Camp! Camp runs from the beginning of July to the end of August on a Monday-Friday basis. Youth Leaders will help staff run games, crafts, and activities during the program. This is an exciting opportunity to enhance your resume, build leadership, communication, and teamwork skills, and get hands-on animal and youth program experience! Hours can also be put towards community service.
This role is best suited to high school students (Grade 9 or above). Volunteers should be positive, enthusiastic, hard-working, and responsible. Experience working with children and/or animals preferred, but not required.
Only selected applicants will be invited to attend an interview and if successful, an orientation session.
Volunteers must be able to commit to two full weeks of camp at minimum.
Group Volunteer Experience
Interested in having your group volunteer?
Download, print and fill out the Group Volunteer Experience form and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll start building your experience!
Volunteer Login and Help
Current Guelph Humane Society Volunteers can login to update their information, sign up for new opportunities and log volunteer hours.
How often do you train and bring on new volunteers?
Do I need previous experience working with animals to volunteer at Guelph Humane Society?
Previous experience is not necessary for all volunteer roles but will be beneficial especially for roles working with animals. Experience does not need to come from working with animals through a job but can also come from having pets.
I need a reference letter. Can the Guelph Humane Society provide me with one?
GHS is happy to provide reference letters for volunteers who have been volunteering with GHS for longer than six months. We will only be able to offer a reference letter within one year of a volunteer leaving GHS. Volunteers asking for a reference letter after being absent for one year will, unfortunately, not be able to obtain a reference letter from GHS.
What commitment do I have to make to be a volunteer?
GHS relies very heavily on volunteers to help care for the animals. For this reason, some roles (such as Canine Companion, Canine Cleaner, Feline Friend, Feline Cleaner, PetSmart Helper) require volunteers to commit to a weekly 2-hour shift for a minimum of six months. All other roles require volunteers to commit to six consecutive months but are on an as-needed basis.
What happens if I miss a shift?
As GHS and the animals rely so heavily on volunteers, we cannot have volunteers missing their shifts. If three consecutive shifts or six shifts overall are missed within the first six months of being a volunteer with GHS, the Volunteer Coordinator will ask you to come in for an in-person meeting to discuss the absences. If you continue to miss shifts, you will be asked to leave the volunteer program.
Does GHS require volunteers to get a record check?
For certain roles, we may require volunteers 18 years and older to submit a criminal record check at their own expense as part of our screening process. Criminal Record Checks completed within the past 12 months are acceptable.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you require further information about our Volunteer Program