Volunteer

Special Pals Volunteer (noun, superhero): Incredible animal lover that works hard, cuddles hard, gets messy, smiles, is a team player, and has fun taking care of the dogs and cats that are looking for their forever homes.

Volunteer with Special Pals! Our shelter has some of the best volunteers around, but we are always looking for more helping hands.

We have just launched a completely redesigned volunteer program. Our goal is to train and retain volunteers who keep coming back to help on a consistent basis, maximizing everyone's time and effort, and giving a huge helping hand to the staff and adoptable animals!

We would love to have you share your time and talents with us... keep reading to learn how!

Special Pals volunteers must complete the following:

  • Register for and attend volunteer orientation at the shelter to learn about the daily process - it's a lot more than walking and feeding!
  • Donate $25 for your volunteer t-shirt, apron, name badge, and training sessions.
  • Commit to training and mentoring to maximize your volunteer muscle. This may take several weeks, but we help you every step of the way!
  • Once you're ready, commit to at least four (4) volunteer hours every month and six (6) months of service at the shelter. Most volunteers serve with us four times a month, some come a few times a week. We welcome as much time as you'd like to give!

Taking care of our pals is a full-time team effort, and we take it seriously. Volunteer training requires time and resources; we understand this kind of commitment isn't for everyone, and that's OK! Consider making a donation to support Special Pals, picking up a few items from our Wishlist, or check out our Walk With a Friend and Rent-A-Pal programs for other volunteering and giving options.

You must be 18 or older to volunteer at Special Pals.

Volunteers age 12-17 may volunteer alongside a parent or guardian. Parents and guardians are required to complete our volunteer application and orientation along with their minors.

For everyone's safety, we must keep a one-to-one minor-to-adult volunteer ratio. We have many parent-student volunteer teams and they'll all tell you that it's a fun bonding experience!

Community Service guidelines differ from volunteer guidelines.

Orientation will be held every other Sunday. Please arrive by 9:45 am and bring your ID. You do not need to call and schedule your orientation. Orientation lasts about 45 minutes. If you have any questions, contact us.

Start Here

Volunteer Orientation

Volunteer Hub

Sign up for shifts here

Volunteer with Special Pals - Houston No-Kill Shelter

Heidi Gibson, Volunteer Coordinator

Volunteer with Special Pals - Houston No-Kill Shelter

Shelley & Bobby, volunteers

Volunteer with Special Pals - Houston No-Kill Shelter

Cristina & Lisa, volunteers

Volunteer Groups

Student Volunteer Groups

We love working with scouts, youth groups, and school service groups on projects at Special Pals! If you have an idea for a project, click here to get in touch.

Corporate Service Days

Join companies like Chevron, Starbucks, Methodist, Members Choice Credit Union, Target, and Katy Magazine and spend a day of service at Special Pals. Contact us to schedule your group and get more information about becoming a partner.

What Volunteering Looks Like at Special Pals

More About Volunteering