Volunteer Programs

Hikes With Hounds
Burlington Recreation & Parks and Burlington Animal Services are teaming up for the Hikes with Hounds program and are currently searching for volunteers.  Volunteers will take a shelter dog for a hike along one of Burlington’s beautiful trails!  This new volunteer opportunity will offer an enrichment activity for some of Burlington Animal Services’ adoptable dogs to get away for a couple of hours to enjoy nature, socializing and exercise.  Hikes with Hounds will be offered one Friday each month at a hiking trail location at a Burlington park or along the Haw River Trail.

Volunteers must meet certain requirements including:Hikes with Hounds

Must be 18 years of age or older

• Must be able to hike up to 4 miles at a moderate pace or on an uneven terrain

• Must attend volunteer orientation training before becoming a trail dog walker

• Registration form with Waiver and copy of ID must be submitted in advance

For more information or to register, please call (336) 229-3150. 

Registration Form
Volunteer Procedures

Volunteering at Burlington Animal Services

Burlington Animal Services welcomes volunteers who have a sincere interest in our animals. Volunteers are an integral extension of our staff and we appreciate your time and willingness to help. To be an effective volunteer there must be a sincere interest in the work to be done, acceptance of supervision, adherence to our policies and a prudent use of common sense when working with the animals. We ask volunteers to be professional and courteous at all times, and to maintain the dignity and credibility of the Animal Services department with the public. 

Volunteer Requirements
  • Volunteers must be 16 years of age or older.
  • Must complete orientation session (see below for schedule and information). 
  • Agree to adhere to Burlington Animal Services' policies and procedures.
  • Complete application and liability waiver. A background check is required for age 18 or older. Persons with certain criminal convictions will not be permitted to volunteer. Click on the links below for volunteer forms.

Volunteer Opportunities 
  • Pet Pal—This involves walking, talking to, and playing with adoptable dogs and cats. These animals need exercise and attention. Volunteers can play with them in special areas at BAS and shower them with love and affection. A socialized cat or dog will become someone's pet much faster.
  • VolunteerDog Obedience Training—Most BAS dogs are eager to learn their manners and would benefit from learning the basics of sit, stay, down, etc. Well-mannered dogs get adopted faster. If volunteers have any experience in obedience training, BAS welcomes them to help train BAS dogs.
  • Grooming—Many BAS animals have not been cared for before coming to BAS. Their fur may be dirty, matted or shaggy from seasonal shedding. Their chance for adoption increases greatly if they have been groomed.
  • Photography—BAS posts pictures of all adoptable pets on different websites and can always use volunteer help in getting good photographs of animals.  
  • Special Events—BAS takes animals to special events such as adoption fairs, the Carousel Festival, Christmas parades, etc., and can use extra hands and helpers. The Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator and/or the Animal Shelter Manager shall schedule at least one special event involving BAS animals each month.
  • Rabies/Microchip ClinicsBAS holds several rabies/microchip clinics each year and needs volunteers to fill out the certificates and collect fees. BAS can use volunteers at these clinics who have neat handwriting and good spelling skills.
  • volunteersHikes with Hounds—Burlington Recreation & Parks and BAS have teamed up for the Hikes with Hounds program, where volunteers take a shelter dog for a hike along one of Burlington’s beautiful trails. Hikes with Hounds offers enrichment by allowing some of BAS’s adoptable dogs to get away for a couple of hours to enjoy nature, socialize, and exercise. Hikes with Hounds will be offered one Friday each month at a hiking trail location at a Burlington park or along the Haw River Trail.
  • Fostering—BAS needs dedicated volunteers to keep high-risk or at-need animals in their homes during short-term foster placements in order to help ensure positive outcomes for these animals. High-risk or at-need animals may include those with medical and/or behavioral needs as well as puppies and kittens.
  • Laundry—BAS staff need help washing, drying, and folding linens used for cleaning and in animal kennels.
  • Kennel Cleaning Assistance—Keeping animal kennels clean is a 24/7 job, so BAS staff welcome volunteer help in cleaning cat cages and dog kennels.

In order to volunteer at BAS, individuals must complete the application process (described below), attend a volunteer orientation, and adhere to BAS policies and procedures.

Volunteer Forms
A completed application and liability waiver are required for all volunteers. Volunteers age 18 and older are required to complete a background check form as well.

Complete and sign the forms. Either mail to Program Coordinator, Burlington Animal Services, 221 Stone Quarry Rd., Haw River, NC 27258; email to lmichel@ci.burlington.nc.us; or bring them to the orientation session.

Volunteer Orientation
The volunteer orientation session will be held the 2nd Thursday of each month at 11:00 a.m. at the Pet Adoption Center. The session will last approximately 1 hour. Please pre-register for orientation by emailing Laura Michel at lmichel@ci.burlington.nc.us or calling 336-578-0343. If it is impossible for you to attend at this time, please contact Laura. During the school year, high school students will be accommodated on teacher workdays. 

Volunteer Hours
Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Burlington Animal Services is closed to the public on Sundays and most holidays.