Volunteer FAQ

Who can foster?

Anyone over 18 years old. If you rent you must have landlord permission to have pets on the property, even if only for a short time.

Can I pick my foster animals?

Normally no, but there can be exceptions.

What can I foster?

  • Very young puppies or kittens who usually need to be bottle fed every few hours.
  • Young puppies or kittens that are eating on their own but need TLC.
  • Momma's and nursing babies.
  • Sick animals of any age. This means animals that have kennel cough or upper respiratory issues. We normally do not send out animals with serious issues.
  • Animals with socialization issues.
  • Animals that have been at the shelter to long.
  • Animals waiting for a ride to rescue.

What is the minimum age requirement to volunteer?

For the safety of our volunteers and animals, we do require all volunteers to be  12 years old, without exception. All 12 - 15 year olds must have a parent/guardian with them at all times while volunteering. At the age of 16, you may volunteer on your own with parental consent. You must be 18 years of age to volunteer at our Petsmart and Thrift store location.

What is the process to become a HSOY Volunteer?

  • Your first step is to submit a volunteer application, which you can do either in person at the shelter or online at the hsoyuma.com website.
  • It will take 5-7 business days to process the application. Once your application has been accepted, you will receive an email with the next volunteer orientation date.
  • You must attend a volunteer orientation and animal handling class before you start volunteering. Both of those are offered on the same day to speed up the volunteer process.
  • After attending both the volunteer orientation and animal handling class, you will then discuss with the Volunteer Coordinator to see where your skills are best needed.

*We do realize that it is a lengthy process to become a volunteer but we do ask for your patience. We like to make sure all new volunteers are correctly trained for the safety of the animals and the volunteers.

What are the requirements to be a HSOY Volunteer?

  • Be committed to the mission and values of the Humane Society of Yuma.

Commit to volunteering a minimum 3 month period of at least 2 hours per week. *Due to the lack of resources and amount of training we put into our volunteers, we do not accept short-term volunteers. 

  • Become a Bronze Paw member for $25 or a Pack Pals member for $25 for the first family member and $10 for each additional member.

*We kindly ask new volunteers to become a Bronze Paw member which includes: a Volunteer t-shirt, Volunteer name badge, training and the application processing.   

Does the Humane Society of Yuma offer group volunteering?

Yes, we can offer group volunteering. If interested, please contact the Volunteer Department.

What volunteer opportunities does HSOY offer?

  • Dog Walking
  • Cat Cuddling
  • Events
  • Thrift Store
  • Foster Care
  • Spay and Neuter Clinic
  • Front Desk Assistant
  • Feline Friends
  • PetSmart Dog Walker/Cat Cuddler
  • Marketing
  • Rescue
  • 4 Paws Pantry
  • Glamour Photos

I just want to walk dogs, why does that require training?

Shelter animals are different than your animals at home. We want to make sure the animals consistently receive a high-quality level of care and stay as healthy as possible. To do this, we need to educate our volunteers about safety procedures and protocols that are currently in place to limit the transfer of disease within our shelters. We also want to educate our volunteers on how to correctly interact with our shelter animals in order to reduce stress on the animals.

Do you accept community service hours?

No, we do not offer community service hours mandated by the court. Through our regular volunteer program we are unable to sign off on community service hours.

Can I bring my own pet with me while volunteering?

Unfortunately, we cannot allow volunteers to bring their own pets to the shelter while volunteering. We want to keep the spread of disease as low as possible. And even though your animal may be very well trained, we do not know the history of the animals in the shelter. They could be very frightened by other animals or be aggressive, so we take the most precaution that we can.

I am not old enough to volunteer yet, is there any way I can help HSOY?

Absolutely, there are many ways you can help the animals at HSOY! There is a list of things you can do at home and then donate to the shelter.


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