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Become a Volunteer

We’re so excited you’re considering volunteering at Humane Society Silicon Valley (HSSV). We would love for you to be a part of our awesome group of volunteers who help us fulfill our mission daily.

About our Volunteer Program

Volunteers play a critical role in our ability to meet our mission goals of saving and enhancing the lives of both people and pets. Our adult Volunteers are 18 years or older and can commit to 8 hours of service per month for six months to one year. There is a $40 registration fee, and training is provided for all Volunteer roles.

How Do I Get Started?

The next Volunteer Recruitment Cycle is April 26th – May 12th. Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Sign up for a Meet & Greet below.  We’ll let you know more about HSSV and answer questions about the volunteer roles available now.  Take a look at the links below for more details on each of the roles.  RSVP by clicking on the date you can attend:

Step 2: After the Meet & Greet, we’ll send you an online Volunteer Application.  Please submit it by May 6th, 2018.

Step 3: If it’s a good match, we’ll invite you to attend a New Volunteer On-boarding Session on Friday, May 11th from 12p – 1p OR Saturday, May 12th from 10a – 11a.

  • If you can’t attend either of the On-boarding Sessions above, please check back in early Summer 2018 for the next Volunteer Recruitment Cycle and sign up then!

Volunteer Roles Available during this Recruitment Cycle

Volunteer Adoption Counselor
Kitten Vaccination Station (KVS)
Volunteer Pet Store Associate
Kitty Dipper
Ringworm Attendant
Kennel Attendant
Other Ways to Get Involved

Volunteer Adoption Counselor (20 volunteers needed)

This completely new role at HSSV (you’ll be the first in it!) was designed to support the significant increase in adoptions of shelter pets at our 4 locations over the past year – we want to train you to make matches between families and furry companions.  We think it will be one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll ever have!

Read the full Volunteer Assignment Description here: Volunteer Adoption Counselor

  • Days and times needed: Bi-monthly, 3-hour shifts, Monday – Sunday, between 10a – 6p
  • Volunteer Adoption Counselor Training will be held on: Friday, June 22nd from 12p -4p; OR Saturday, June 23rd from 9a -1p; OR Sunday, June 24th from 2p -6p

Kitten Vacination Station (KVS) (10 volunteers needed)

In this seasonal, 4-month volunteer role, KVS volunteers work in pairs to provide vaccinations and deworming treatments to foster kittens and is a great opportunity to get experience in many aspects of veterinary care.  They also help schedule appointments and get supplies ready for foster families to take home with them!

Read the full Volunteer Assignment Description here: Kitten Vaccination Station (KVS)

  • Days and times Needed: Once per week, Monday – Thursdays from 11a – 2p or Friday – Sunday from 9:30a -12:30p or 12:30p -3:30p
  • Hands on training will be provided on May 19th from 11a – 3p

Volunteer Pet Store Associate (10 volunteers needed)

When animals get adopted, their families visit our Whole Pet Store to buy goodies before the ride home. Help in all aspects of this process, from the first “congratulations,” to ringing them up and saying goodbye!

Read the full Volunteer Assignment Description here: Pet Store Associate

Days and times needed:

  • Every other Monday – 3p – 5p
  • Every Tuesday- 12p – 5pm
  • Every other Tuesday – 2:30p -5:30p OR 4p -6:30p
  • Every other Thursday – 4p – 6p
  • Every other Friday – 2p – 6p
  • Every other Sunday – 3p – 6p

Kitty Dipper (10 volunteers needed)

During kitten season (April – October), we see over 2500 kittens come through our doors. Many of them come in with a fungus known as ringworm. Ringworm is treatable, and we need your help! This role is exclusively dipping kittens diagnosed with ringworm into a medicated solution that smells like sulfur, all while wearing protective gear!  Sound like fun?

Read the full Volunteer Assignment Description here: Kitty Dipper

  • Days and Times Needed: Monday – Friday, between 10a – 2p
  • Hands on training will be held on Thursdays from 10a -12p at our Animal Community Center in Milpitas

Ringworm Attendant (4 volunteers needed)

During kitten season (April – October), we see more than 2,000 kittens enter our shelter needing help.  Many of them have contracted a fungus known as ringworm.  Great thing about ringworm is that it’s treatable!  This volunteer position is exclusively focused on cleaning and socializing kittens diagnosed with ringworm while they are recovering.  You’ll be dressed in your best: protective gowns, gloves, and shoe covers!

Read the full Volunteer Assignment Description here: Ringworm Attendant

  • Days and Times Needed: Once per week, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Friday, from 10a – 12:30p
  • Hands on training will be held on Wednesday, May 16th from 5:30p – 6:30p OR Sunday, May 20th from 1p-2p in Milpitas

Kennel Attendant (15 volunteers needed)

Kennel Attendant Volunteers are invaluable members of the Animal Care Team and assist with the daily feeding, cleaning, and overall care of the animals at HSSV.  This volunteer assignment will essentially show you how an organization manages the humane care of hundreds of animals every single day.  It’s a TIRING, PHYSICALLY DEMANDING, and INCREDIBLY DYNAMIC & MEANINGFUL volunteer position!

Read the full Volunteer Assignment Description here: Kennel Attendant

  • Days and times needed: Once per week 5a – 8a, 7a – 10a, 2p -5p, or 5p – 8
  • Kennel Trainings will be held on Saturday, May 12 from 2:30p -4p, Wednesday, May 15th from 4p -5:30, OR Sunday, May 20th from 9a -10:30a

Other Ways to Get Involved Now!

1. Become a Foster Volunteer

Foster parents are heroes and allow us to help even more animals in the community! One animal in your home allows us to rescue another into our Animal Community Center or Neighborhood Adoption Centers. Learn more.

2. Join our Doggy Day Out (DDO) Team

Volunteers give our active, large breed dogs (that tend to pull on the leash and don't quite yet understand good manners but are otherwise great dogs) a mini vacation from the shelter by taking them on day or overnight outings in the area. Hikes, beach days, some chill time in a home or dinner at a dog - friendly restaurant are all common outings our dogs enjoy.

By taking out a DDO dog, you can help them get adopted too! You’ll meet people who might be interested in adopting a DDO dog and sharing photos and videos of your DDO dog with us helps us spread the word about them on social media.

Doggy Day Out FAQs

  • How does Doggy Day Out work?

We send out two to three dogs per day, every day of the week! Dogs may be picked up between 9 a.m. – 9:30 a.m., and brought back to the shelter any time before 1 p.m.

  • Can I take a dog out any day of the week?

We have Doggy Day Out volunteer shifts seven days a week throughout the year. Weekend dates tend to book up faster, so we encourage volunteers to sign up for weekdays. Volunteer dates are booked out several months in advance.

  • Can I pick which shelter dog I want to go on Doggy Day Out with me?

Our staff picks dogs based on who will benefit the most from some time away from the shelter. 

  • Can my personal dog and the Doggy Day Out dog hang out together?

Unfortunately, no. Not all Doggy Day Out shelter dogs get along with other dogs, so volunteers should avoid places where dogs are largely off leash (like a dog park), and shouldn't introduce him/her to any other dogs, including their own.

  • What should I bring with me when I pick up a dog?

Your paperwork, and that's it!

We'll supply a doggy seatbelt for the car ride, leash, harness, poop bags, treats, water bottle, contact information, and anything else you may need for the day. 

  • How can I help a Doggy Day Out dog get adopted?

We love it when Doggy Day Out volunteers take photos and videos of their adventures with their canine buddy for the day. You can send photos and videos, and great stories to, or post them on Facebook or Instagram and tag @humanesocietysv.

  • How do I sign up?

Email with your preferred availability and any other questions you have.

Be sure to read the Doggy Day Out Manual before coming in to pick up your DDO dog.