Top places for animal lovers to volunteer
Animal Humane Society
St. Paul · Golden Valley · Woodbury · Coon Rapids · Buffalo · animalhumanesociety.org
With five locations around the cities, the Animal Humane Society proves to be one of the most popular places to volunteer with plenty of opportunities in each of their locales. One of the many volunteer roles includes helping potential adopters connect and learn more about each animal’s behaviors and history. You also have opportunities to socialize and play with the animals, take them for walks, give baths, and provide training support.
(Photos courtesy of Animal Humane Society)
Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Minnesota
2530 Dale St. N Roseville · wrcmn.org
If you’re looking for a truly unique and rewarding experience, the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center is the place. Beginning as a student club at the University of Minnesota, the WRC has grown into one of the country’s busiest wildlife hospitals. They offer both long-term and seasonal volunteer opportunities that allow you to work with over 160 fascinating different species from Trumpeter swans and snapping turtles to your ordinary squirrels and cardinals. You’ll have the ability to work outdoors helping animals develop the strength and skills needed to survive in the wild and assist in the Mammal, Avian, and Waterfowl Nurseries.
(Photos courtesy of Wildlife Rehabilitation Center)
13000 Zoo Boulevard, Apple Valley · mnzoo.org
A Minnesota favorite, the Minnesota Zoo is home to over 5,300 amazing creatures from around the world. And you can be a part of it! Opportunities include working on the Family Farm for a hands-on animal experience (the Goat Corral being the fan favorite), assisting at Minnesota Zoo events, or helping to connect and engage guests by sharing information and answering questions about the exhibits. You can volunteer for the summer months or commit to a year for a more in-depth experience. By volunteering, not only will you be able to interact and learn more about the animals, but the Minnesota Zoo offers great benefits that include free admission and discounts at the IMAX Theater.
(Photos courtesy of MN Zoo)
10100 Viking Drive, Suite 100, Eden Prairie · secondhandhounds.org
A nonprofit animal rescue, Secondhand Hounds’ mission is to provide safe shelter and care for animals while trying to find them permanent homes. With flexible volunteer hours and in person training, this is a great place if you have a busy schedule. You’ll be able to connect and work closely with the animals, giving baths and walking the dogs, as well as play an integral role helping to find them homes by performing home visits for potential foster and adopter families.
(Photos courtesy of Secondhand Hounds)
Can Do Canines
9440 Science Center Dr, New Hope · can-do-canines.org
From opening a refrigerator to detecting low blood sugar, the dogs that graduate from Can Do Canines’ program make an incredible difference in the lives of people with disabilities. You can be indispensable in preparing these pups for their important job in their new homes. The level of your involvement is up to you! For a high level of commitment you’re able to take in a puppy for six to 18 months to teach basic obedience and socialization. If that isn’t for you, you can still get your puppy fix by taking in a dog for one week or by simply helping out at their office and many events.
(Photos courtesy of Can Do Canines)
593 Fairview Ave N, St. Paul · felinerescue.org
If I’ve learned anything from the internet it’s that people love cats. And it seems Minnesotans in particular are quite smitten seeing the wildly popular Cat Video Festival returning this year to St. Paul. If this is you, the volunteer based organization Feline Rescue presents the perfect opportunity for you to show your love by providing a foster home or working as a Shelter Caregiver feeding, grooming, and playing with the cats to help socialize them for a greater chance of adoption.
(Photos courtesy of Feline Rescue)
These organizations are always looking for dedicated and loving volunteers so whichever one you choose you’ll know you’ll be making a difference for our fluffy friends!
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