How to Volunteer

Your crucial gift of time allows us to magnify our impact and save more lives. By joining our team of dedicated volunteers, you’ll build strong relationships with other volunteers, our community, and the animals themselves. With your dedication, we will continue to save more lives and find amazing animals new homes.

Please note: Our General Volunteer Program does not apply to Court-Ordered Community Service. If you have been convicted of a felony, we are unable to offer volunteer opportunities at this time. Please visit our Court-Ordered Community Service page for more information.

Steps to Become an ADL Volunteer

  • Step 1: Review opportunities to think about what you’d like to do.
    • Our volunteers can assist with a diverse range of tasks. View our Volunteer Opportunities to learn about a few of our departments along with specific activities you can help with!
  • Step 2: If you are ready to commit to our program, sign up for a new volunteer orientation. You will receive a confirmation message that will enable you to create your own unique volunteer profile.
    • Orientations are offered at two of our locations and we also offer virtual orientations as needed. Each orientation enables you to volunteer at all three ADL locations! Your profile will be activated after attending orientation, and you will use this to clock in/out & track your hours!
  • Step 3: Attend orientation on your scheduled date.

Nacogdoches Campus Orientation

Paul Jolly Campus Orientation

Virtual Volunteer Orientations will become available throughout the winter months when weather does not permit on-site orientations. Virtual orientations will be posted as they become available.

You will learn more about what it is like to volunteer, go on a tour if attending onsite, ask questions, and meet some of our team! You will also receive your volunteer T-shirt, the Volunteer Handbook and sign the Volunteer Waiver.

Age Requirements

Age 3-11: Pet Champion

A great opportunity for younger pet advocates to learn about our life-saving mission, discover what responsible pet ownership entails, and spend time with our dogs and cats while volunteering with their parents on campus! Learn more and sign up.

Age 12-15: Junior Volunteer

Must be accompanied by a parent/guardian while on campus. Parent/guardian must also sign up for and attend orientation to become a registered volunteer.

Age 16-18: General Volunteer (with signed waiver)

May volunteer independently with a signed waiver from a parent/guardian. If attending orientation without a parent/guardian, download the waiver  get it signed in advance.

Volunteers age 16 or older may participate in additional volunteer activities like dog walking (After completing 12 hours and additional training) and may assist in the animal hospital.

Age 18 & up: General Volunteer

Volunteers age 18 or older may also volunteer in the hospital isolation and surgical areas (After completing additional training).

Information for volunteers with physical and intellectual disabilities: ADL is happy to provide volunteer opportunities to any individual who is capable of performing tasks independently or with the assistance of a caretaker, parent, or guardian. Please note a caretaker, parent, or guardian must also be a registered volunteer who has attended an orientation class. Our top priority is to ensure the safety of all staff and  volunteers working with the pets at our facility.

Service Groups

Attention clubs, students, youth groups, and businesses: Are you interested in volunteering at Animal Defense League?

Foster Volunteers

Help provide critical care for a shelter pet or just a needed break from shelter life. Often, fosters are needed for pets who are too young for adoption, or need time to recover from a health issue. Fostering will provide 5 volunteer hours per day.

Other Ways to Help

Immediately impact the lives of the thousands of abandoned, abused, or neglected dogs and cats by providing needed medical care, food, shelter, safety, and materials.