` Current Volunteer Opportunities | Cleveland Animal Protective League

Current Volunteer Opportunities

Interested in becoming a Cleveland APL Volunteer? We have lots of exciting and rewarding volunteer opportunities available both at our shelter in Tremont,  PetSmart Charities® Everyday Adoption Center located at the PetSmart® store in Parma, as well as offsite locations and other special events!

Shelter in Tremont

Dog Adoption Specialist: Want to help adopters meet their “perfect canine companion” at our shelter?  Dog Adoption Specialists work on the dog adoption floor with animals and clients to help potential adopters make informed decisions while assisting them with meeting animals and helping to maintain a presentable shelter environment.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and you must be age 18 or older.

Cat Adoption Specialist: Want to help adopters meet their “purr-fect feline companion” at our shelter and help provide some TLC and a clean, healthy home for our cats? Cat Adoption Specialists work on the cat adoption floor to help adopters make informed decisions.  Volunteers socialize, enrich, groom, feed, water and maintain clean feline kennels at our shelter to help our cats “put their best paw forward” while waiting for their “purr-fect match”.  Other duties include becoming familiar with the adoptable animals, helping to maintain a presentable workplace, informing guests of the standard medical treatments we provide our animals, and assisting adopters with meeting animals.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, Pet Partners welcome.

Cat Adoption Coach (Advancement Opportunity): Do you want to help others become successful Cat Adoption Specialists?  Do you like to work with people and share your expertise to best help our friendly felines?  A Cat Adoption Coach will mentor and guide new volunteers on how best to provide excellent customer service to potential adopters on the cat adoption floor and how to care for the adoptable cats. Volunteers must have completed 12 consecutive shifts as a Cat Adoption Specialist to be considered for this advanced opportunity.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, Pet Partners welcome.

Dog Walking Volunteer: Want to get some outdoor exercise while spending quality time with a canine companion?  A Dog Walking Volunteer may walk, or run if you prefer, with dogs while providing socialization to help the dogs put their best “paw” forward while waiting for their new home.  We also have a play yard for some good quality play time outdoors.  There are three levels available to suit your goals in working with our dogs.  Advancement opportunities are available.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, even during inclement weather, and Pet Partner teams are welcome.

Behavioral Dog Enrichment Volunteer: Want to help to create a more active and interesting environment for each individual dog, maintaining their physical and mental stimulation while alleviating the stress and boredom of kennel life? Behavioral Dog Enrichment Volunteers use a variety of forms of enrichment to stimulate the senses of a dog such as food games and toys, essential oils, music, touch and more. Proper enrichment will lead to a happier, healthier dog who’s ready to find their forever home! This position requires a regular weekly schedule, even during inclement weather, and Pet Partner teams are welcome.

Grooming Volunteer: Want to help our dogs’ look and feel great? Grooming Volunteers help to provide basic grooming such as bathing and brushing to help improve a dog’s appearance, comfort and well-being. This also helps a dog put his or her best paw forward when meeting a new potential adopter or future family member. This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and Pet Partner teams are welcome.

Dog Walking Coach (Advancement Opportunity): Want to help our new volunteers become successful Dog Walking Volunteers?   A Dog Walking Coach will become a trusted mentor to guide new volunteers to become confident and impactful team members through individual coaching sessions at the shelter. Previous experience of 36 hours or 12 consecutive shifts at the highest volunteer level required to be considered for this opportunity.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, even during inclement weather, and Pet Partner teams are welcome.

Dog Playgroup Supervisor (Advancement Opportunity): Want to experience dog behavior at its best by leading dog playgroups with several dogs in the play yards?  Dog Playgroup Supervisors help dogs play from a pre-determined list of dogs with similar play styles. Dog Playgroup Supervisors are responsible for overseeing the introduction and correction of dogs in the playgroup.  Volunteers in this assignment must be highest level Dog Walking Volunteer.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and you must be age 18 or older.

Dog Playgroup Runner (Advancement Opportunity): Want to assist the Dog Playgroup Supervisor with introducing new dogs into a play group?  Dog Playgroup Runners assist the Dog Playgroup Supervisor by locating each dog in the shelter to bring him or her to the play yards for introduction into the play group while helping as directed by the Supervisor. Volunteers in this assignment must be highest level Dog Walking Volunteer.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and you must be age 18 or older.

Dog Adoption Specialist (Advancement Opportunity): Want to help adopters meet their “perfect canine companion” at our shelter?  Dog Adoption Specialists work on the dog adoption floor with animals and clients to help potential adopters make informed decisions while assisting them with meeting animals and helping to maintain a presentable shelter environment.  This position requires previous experience as a Dog Walking Volunteer in addition to a regular weekly schedule.  You must be age 18 or older.

Dog Adoption Coach (Advancement Opportunity): Do you want to help others become successful Dog Adoption Specialists?  Do you like to work with people and share your expertise to best help our dogs find their new families and homes? A Dog Adoption Coach will mentor and guide new volunteers on how best to provide excellent customer service to potential adopters on the dog adoption floor. Volunteers must have completed 12 consecutive shifts as a Dog Adoption Specialist to be considered for this advanced opportunity.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and you must be age 18 or older.

Veterinary Support Associate: Want to gain some experience or use the skills you already have in our veterinary clinic?  Vet Support Associates assist the veterinary staff to aid the animals in our care by preparing necessary equipment, supplies, and animals for surgery or treatment and perform other administrative duties.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and you must be age 18 or older.

Animal Welfare Clinic (AWC) Support Technician: Want to gain some experience or use your skills to help support high-quality, low-cost spay/neuter surgeries for other shelters/rescues and feral cats?  AWC Support Technicians assist the veterinary staff with patient check-in and/or discharge, preparing animals for spay/neuter surgery, data entry of animal medical records, patient recovery, and other clinic duties. This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and you must be age 18 or older.

Foster Care Associate: Want to help provide life-saving care to animals in your home?  Foster Care Associates provide a temporary, nurturing and comfortable environment in their home for animals to mature, heal, socialize and become or remain adoptable.  Foster care arrangements may range from two days to two months depending on the animal’s needs.  Commitments are arranged with Foster Care Coordinator, and Pet Partners are welcome.  Please refer to the Foster Care page of the website for more information.

Animal Photographer: Like to capture photographs of animals that express their personality?  Animal Photographers beautifully photograph shelter animals in teams for marketing and promotional purposes and for our website’s Adoptions page. Using your own digital photography equipment and software, you would take the photos and download, edit, and upload them for distribution.  This position requires a regular weekly commitment in addition to animal handling training upon acceptance by supervisor.

Development Associate: Have office skills or development experience that you would like to gain or share to help support our animals?  Development Associates provide support for the Development Department and for APL fund-raising events and activities through various administrative tasks, including opening mail, copying, preparing deposits and mailings and filing documents. This position requires a regular weekly schedule during weekday office hours, and you must be age 16 or older.

PetSmart Charities® Everyday Adoption Center

Everyday Adoption Center Dog Adoption Specialist: Be a matchmaker for our dogs while caring for them at the EAC! Help our adopters meet their perfect canine companion on the dog adoption floor at the EAC by helping them to make informed decisions. Spend time with a dog in the play room of the EAC providing love, socialization, enrichment or play time, and basic training to showcase his/her best qualities in addition to helping to maintain a presentable kennel by assisting with walking dogs to the Relief Room for potty breaks, spot cleaning or other duties as assigned.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule and you must be age 18 or older.

Everyday Adoption Center Dog Adoption Specialist: Be a matchmaker for our dogs! Help our adopters meet their perfect canine companion on the dog adoption floor at the EAC by helping them to make informed decisions in addition to helping to maintain a presentable center by spot cleaning and other duties as assigned. This position requires a regular weekly schedule and you must be age 18 or older.

Everyday Adoption Center Cat Adoption Specialist: Be a matchmaker for our cats while providing some tender-loving care and a clean, healthy home for them!  Help our adopters meet their ‘purr-fect feline companion’ in the cat adoption room at the EAC by helping them make informed decisions in addition to socializing, enriching, grooming, feeding, watering and maintaining clean kennels at our center to help our cats ‘put their best paw forward’ while waiting for their ‘purr-fect match.’  This position requires a regular weekly schedule and Pet Partner teams are welcome (age 14 to 17 with an adult).

Everyday Adoption Center Animal Care Specialist: Come work with animals and help provide clean and comfortable spaces for our dogs and cats while they wait for the forever homes!  Duties include sanitizing kennels and meet and greet rooms, providing food and water to animals at designated times, washing dishes, toys and soiled bedding, and help keep the EAC in tip-top shape.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule and you must be age 18 or older.

Everyday Adoption Center Transport Volunteer: Help our EAC have many animals available for adoption!  Help transport animals to the EAC in Parma from our main shelter in Cleveland.  This position does not require a regular schedule but flexibility to be contacted on an as needed basis.  An insurable driving record and a reliable car are required in addition to being age 18 or older.

Offsite Adoptions  

Offsite Adoptions Specialist: Want to help adopters meet their “perfect match” at different partner adoption locations and/or at community events?  Offsite Adoptions Specialists help find homes for animals at these locations and events while furthering community education and promotion of the APL.  This position requires about two events per month, primarily on the weekends, and Pet Partner teams are welcome.  This is a great position for those who need a more flexible schedule, as you can select events that fit your availability.

Offsite Transport Assistant: Provide assistance and support to the APL’s Adoption Program by transporting adoptable animals to Offsite Partner Locations, as well other duties associated with the offsite adoption program.

Offsite Cat Care Liaison: Want to help care for our cats but cannot travel down to our shelter? Offsite Cat Care Liaisons help to care for adoptable cats at our offsite partner locations.  Volunteers help to socialize  the cats, clean and maintain kennels, monitor health and behavior, educate, and build and maintain relationships with offsite store locations.  This position requires a regular weekly schedule, and Pet Partners are welcome.

Special Events

Special Event Associate – Telethon: Want to help support a FUN fund-raising event that generates much community awareness about the APL and money to help care for our animals?

The Fur-Get-Me-Not Telethon is a 14.5-hour broadcast on WKYC that will showcase the diverse and meaningful work the APL does to rescue, heal, nurture, adopt and advocate for animals in need.  Dick Goddard’s APL Telethon highlights stories about the many wonderful animals that are waiting for loving homes at the Cleveland APL in order to raise money to help the nearly 15,000 animals that the Cleveland APL cares for every year. The goal of the telethons is to unite the community and inspire listeners or viewers to put their compassion in action and give help, hope and a second chance to homeless animals.

Event volunteer assignments include Event Setup, Phone Bank, Greeter, Registration/Sales, Change Counting, Gift Processing, Food Room, Food Solicitation, Food Retrieval, Shuttle Driver, Phone Bank Runner, Photographer, and Event Cleanup.  These positions require pre-event training and adherence to commitment for the event.  This is a great opportunity for those who want to be involved but cannot commit to helping on a regular weekly basis.

Special Event Associate – Fur Ball: Want to help support a gala fund-raising event that supports our Second Chance Program and includes dinner, silent and live auctions and an appearance by a special animal guest? Our annual Fur Ball might be the right opportunity for you. There are three teams that support the Fur Ball – the Auction Procurement Team, the Auction Presentation Team and the Decorations Team.

The Auction Procurement Team works to obtain significant and unique auction items to exceed the fund-raising goal for the event’s live and silent auctions.  The main activity of this team is to procure auction items.  This includes identification of auction items and solicitation and follow up for the items.  This process will include reaching out to members of the community, including individuals, stores and shops, service organizations, corporations and other nonprofit agencies for items or services.

The Auction Presentation Team works to design and execute the overall presentation of the auction items to be displayed the night of the event.  This includes identifying the supplies needed to package items, create package tags, etc., that tie into the theme of the Fur Ball and overall decorations.  Physical packaging of the auction items takes place two weeks before the event.

The Decoration Team works to help design and make creative, unique and meaningful event decorations to support the theme of event.  Decorations include centerpieces for the grand ballroom tables, registration and throughout the venue.

Event volunteer assignments are Transporter, Event Setup, Photographer, Animal Caretaker, Greeter, Registration, “Key to Your Heart” Sales, Table Monitor-Silent Auction, Bid Spotter-Live Auction and Fund-A-Need, Auction Package Transporter-Silent Auction, Closing Assistant, Runner, Credit Card Processor, Calendar Sales, Auction Package Distributor, and Event Cleanup. You may join any committee or volunteer for the event itself – it’s your choice. Committee members may attend and participate in regularly scheduled team meetings. Event volunteers must complete pre-event training and adhere to their commitment for the day or evening of the event.

Other special event opportunities may become available throughout the year as well.