We always need more people who want to walk dogs. The shelter can accommodate so many animals that the staff members just don’t have enough time to make sure that every animal gets attention every day. Human interaction helps the animals release pent up energy and reduces stress, making them happier and more adoptable. Walking the dogs really does help them get adopted!
Sign Up for Dog Classes
- Beginner Dog Walking and Evaluation Class: To sign up, log on to Volgistics and click the My Schedule tab to view the calendar. Click on a Help Wanted sign to view the available classes. Bring a $10 fee for your leash. This class teaches volunteers the basics of walking dogs at the shelter. You will be evaluated on your knowledge of dog walking rules and your ability to safely walk dogs rated green and yellow. Volunteers who pass this class are allowed to walk dogs independently.
- Advanced (blue rated dogs) Dog Walking: To sign up, log on to Volgistics and click the My Schedule tab to view the calendar. Click on a Help Wanted sign to view the available classes. This class will only be available after you have been an active dog walker for at least 3 months and have 15 hours experience walking yellow dogs at the Burlington County Animal Shelter. Blue rated dogs may have behavioral issues such as mouthing, mounting, leash biting, fearfulness, etc. Previous experience with medium to large dogs is preferred. Once you complete this class, you may be permitted to walk certain blue rated dogs.
- Tees to Toys: This monthly class is open to all volunteers and their family members — there are no age limits. You will learn how to make simple dog and cat toys from old t-shirts. To sign up, log on to Volgistics and click the My Schedule tab to view the calendar. Click on a Help Wanted sign to view the available classes.
- Play group training: This class is held monthly. Want to be involved in play groups? Take this class. Play groups have been a great way for us to allow the shelter dogs to be social with each other. A 30-minute play group session for a dog is the equivalent to a 2-hour walk. You don’t have to be comfortable being the lead handler to participate. There are several roles for volunteers in play groups, including administrator (taking notes on the dogs), runner (taking dogs to/from kennels) and yard assistant (lead handler’s wingman). It’s also FUN watching the dogs play. Contact Ryan at email@example.com to schedule a class.
- Click for Quiet: Click for Quiet is a proven training method to reduce barking in the kennels. It also helps reduce barrier resistance (dogs who act up when you approach their kennels). This training encourages dogs to learn “good things happen when I’m quiet near the front of my kennel. I get treats, I get to smell a human and am rewarded. Email Johnny and Joanna to set up a one-on-one class.
- Dog Agility: This class is held monthly. It will teach you the basics of how to use the dog agility equipment in the play yard. Agility is great for a dog’s mind and body. To sign up, log on to Volgistics and click the My Schedule tab to view the calendar. Click on a Help Wanted sign to view the available classes.
- Pups to the Park: Friends of BCAS volunteers are permitted to take shelter dogs to local county parks. This is great enrichment for dogs to get away from the stress of the shelter environment. It also gives the dogs exposure to potential adopters outside of the shelter. Dogs can be taken from the shelter as early as 9:30 a.m. and returned before closing. Please review the program’s procedures manual before you take a dog to the park.
- Dog Volunteer Adoption Assistants (VAA): Would you like to show dogs to potential adopters at the shelter? This class is only available after you have been an active dog walker for at least three months and have 15 hours of experience walking dogs at the Burlington County Animal Shelter. Please contact animal advocate John R. or Lisa C. if you’re interested in becoming a dog VAA or would like a refresher course.
- Please read our Special Needs Volunteering guidelines if you think it may apply to your volunteering experience.