Volunteering

UPDATE APRIL 2019 : currently, the wait time for a volunteer position is approximately 2 years. Being very lucky to have received so many requests, we chose nevertheless to stop taking new ones until further notice. For those who wish to volunteer, we encourage you to contact the other shelters in your area who will be very happy to have your help! Thank you all!

Volunteering Program

Do you love animals? Want to help out at the shelter? Here at SARS, we’d be delighted to welcome you on board!

Volunteers are crucial to our organization. They play a key role in fulfilling our mission and enable us to accomplish tasks that would otherwise prove difficult due to a lack of time.

The needs for volunteer services are wide-ranging and depend on the service in question. In addition, the available positions are constantly changing. We provide training for every position and a volunteer’s manual to get you started.

Before filling out the form, please make sure you meet these requirements:

  • You must be at least 10 years old. Minors must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
  • You must be 16 or over to take out dogs.
  • You must be available at least three hours a week (on a bi-weekly basis) and able to follow a set schedule for a minimum of three months. We do not have any positions for occasional or drop-in volunteers.
  • You must be able to respect the established protocols to ensure the health and safety of animals and volunteers.
  • You must report to your volunteer shift regardless of the weather.
  • You must not have a criminal record.
  • You must be respectful of animals and humans.

Available Positions

Enrichment for dogs available for adoption

Volunteer – Enrichment for Dogs Available for Adoption

This volunteer is responsible for enriching the environment of adoptable dogs through outings, walks, games, petting and attention. The volunteer must work in a team with the other volunteers and staff members. He or she may be required to help employees perform their duties, when necessary.

The volunteer must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the volunteer must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times and take part in the continuing education program.

Duties and Responsibilities

Outings

  1. Take dogs into outdoor yards and enclosures during your volunteer shift to provide stimulation (playing, walks, etc.) and allow them to urinate and defecate. Dogs are not allowed to walk in the street. Pay special attention to dogs that are very strong and can pull on the leash. You must be in good physical condition for this volunteer position.
  2. Provide positive stimulation for dogs (e.g., playing fetch) and refrain from encouraging problematic behaviours (e.g., barking).
  3. In the event of poor weather, use the multi-purpose room to stimulate dogs and provide them with attention and petting.
  4. Pick up dog excrement during outings and empty the garbage can when it is full.
  5. Keep outdoor yards and enclosures clean.
  6. Clean the multi-purpose room (if you have used it) at the end of your volunteer shift. The room must be cleaned in accordance with the animal caretakers’ cleaning protocols.
  7. Obey all instructions posted on the enclosure (e.g., “no treats”).
  8. Put away all materials used during your volunteer shift (toys, leashes, etc.)
  9. On the whiteboard, note the time the dog was returned to his or her enclosure.
  10. See to the dogs’well-being during outings.
  11. Notify the animal caretaker promptly of any behaviour or event of concern or of any noteworthy observations regarding a dog.
  12. Write your comments on the observation sheets for each animal.

Assist the Animal Caretaker when Asked

  1. Assist with enclosure maintenance, in accordance with the animal caretaker’s instructions.
  2. Keep all enclosures clean and tidy.
  3. Perform any cleaning or tidying requested by the animal caretaker (e.g., folding blankets).

Attendance at SARS Training Sessions

  1. Attend training sessions required for this position.
  2. Attend professional development sessions.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Good physical condition
  • Good self-control and ability to deal with all types of personalities
  • Ability to follow clear instructions
  • At ease with all sorts of dogs
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to work in teams of two
  • Punctual and diligent

Schedule:

  • Two- or three-hour shifts on a set day of the week

Risks:

  • Bites
  • Scratches
  • Falls
  • Pushing/jostling
Enrichment for cats available for adoption

Volunteer – Enrichment for Cats Available for Adoption

This volunteer is responsible for enriching the environment of adoptable cats though petting room outings, games, petting and attention. The volunteer must work in a team with the other volunteers and staff members. He or she may be required to help employees perform their duties, when necessary.

The volunteer must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the volunteer must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times and take part in the continuing education program.

Duties and Responsibilities

Outings

  1. Take all cats out and/or give them opportunities to socialize during your volunteer shift in order to provide stimulation.
  2. Obey all instructions posted on cat condos (e.g., “no treats”).
  3. Provide stimulation for cats during outings by playing with them, petting them, brushing them, etc.
  4. Keep the petting room and condo area clean.
  5. Put away all materials that you use (toys, brushes, etc.)
  6. See to the cats’ well-being during outings.
  7. Notify the animal caretaker promptly of any behaviour or event of concern or of any noteworthy observations concerning a cat.
  8. Write your comments on the observation sheets for each animal.

Assist the Animal Caretaker when Asked

  1. Assist with condo maintenance, in accordance with the animal caretaker’s instructions.
  2. Perform any cleaning or tidying task requested by the animal caretaker (e.g., folding blankets).

Attendance at SARS Training Sessions

  1. Attend training sessions required for this position.
  2. Attend professional development sessions.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Ability to follow clear instructions
  • At ease with all sorts of cats
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to work in a team
  • Punctual and diligent

Schedule:

  • Two- or three-hour shifts on a set day of the week

Risks:

  • Bites
  • Scratches
Enrichment for exotic pets available for adoption

Volunteer – Enrichment for Exotic Animals Available for Adoption

This volunteer must work in a team with the other staff members. He or she may be required to help employees perform their duties, when necessary.

The exotic animals that we usually have at the shelter include birds, rodents, rabbits and guinea pigs. We do not have any reptiles available for adoption.

The volunteer must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the volunteer must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times and take part in the continuing education program.

Duties and Responsibilities

Exotic Animal Outings

  1. Take out all exotic animals that are allowed access to the exotic animal playroom.
  2. Supervise animals during play sessions and interact with them, if possible.
  3. See to the animals’ well-being during outings.
  4. Pick up excrement in the playroom.
  5. Make sure the playroom is clean at the end of your shift.
  6. Make a note of your observations regarding the animals’ health and behaviour.

Assist the Animal Caretaker, If Asked

  1. Assist in cleaning cages.
  2. Keep the exotic animal room and exotic animal playroom clean and tidy.

Attendance at SARS Training Sessions

  1. Attend training sessions required for this position.
  2. Attend professional development sessions.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Calm, gentle and patient demeanour
  • Ability to follow clear instructions
  • At ease with several sorts of exotic animals
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to work in a team
  • Punctual and diligent

Schedule:

  • Two- or three-hour shifts on a set day of the week

Risks:

  • Bites
  • Scratches
Assistance with veterinary clinic operations

Volunteer – Assistant to Veterinary Technicians

This volunteer must work in a team with the other volunteers and staff members. He or she may be required to help employees perform their duties, when necessary.

The volunteer must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the volunteer must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times and take part in the continuing education program.

Duties and Responsibilities (in order of priority)

Operating Room Maintenance

  1. Clean operating rooms on an ongoing basis.
  2. Clean operating rooms following surgery.
  3. Clean the clinic at day-end (vacuum and wash floors).
  4. Restock supplies (alcohol, gloves, paper towels, etc.)

Moving Animals

  1. Move animals between work and housing areas (rescue and found animal housing, operating rooms, adoption housing).
  2. Ensure that animal files, identity cards and information are properly transferred and managed.

Sterilization of Surgical Equipment Sets

  1. Clean surgical instruments on an ongoing basis.
  2. Wrap and mark surgical instrument sets.
  3. Sterilize surgical sets.

Assistance with Waking-Up Operations (as requested by VTs)

  1. Supervise waking animals as instructed.
  2. Feed waking animals as instructed.
  3. Clean waking facilities after pets are transferred to adoption.

Attendance at SARS Training Sessions

  1. Attend training sessions required for this position.
  2. Attend professional development sessions.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Ability to follow clear instructions
  • Comfortable with surgical operations
  • Ability to avoid anthropomorphizing animals (e.g., interpreting pain and comfort levels, reacting to abortions, etc.)
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to work as part of a team
  • Punctual and diligent
  • Ability to work discreetly so as not to disturb the concentration of employees performing surgery

Specific Requirements:

  • Animals under anesthesia must be handled in strict accordance with the instructions of the VT/veterinarian. Animals under anesthesia may be dysphoric, and improper handling may lead to serious injuries to the animal or a human. Animals must always be handled in accordance with the highest safety standards: cats must be transported in carrier boxes and dogs on a leash, and pets waking after surgery must be kept in a quiet environment.
  • Avoid direct and indirect handling of incision areas.
  • Do not enter the operating room unless asked to do so by a VT/veterinarian.

Schedule:

  • Three- to seven-hour shifts
  • Availability on Tuesday or Thursday afternoons

Risks

  • Bites
  • Scratches
  • Direct or indirect exposure to anesthetic gas. No pregnant women.
Maintenance and assistance to animal caretakers

Volunteer – Assistant Animal Caretaker

This volunteer is responsible for assisting the animal caretaker in maintaining the materials used by animals. He or she must work in a team with the other volunteers and staff members and may be required to help employees perform their duties, when necessary.

The volunteer must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the volunteer must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times and take part in the continuing education program.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Wash dishes using a dishwasher.
  2. Wash and fold laundry, using a clothes washer and dryer.
  3. Clean service room counters.
  4. Sweep and mop floors in the service room.
  5. This position does not involve any direct contact with animals.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Ability to follow clear instructions
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to work as part of a team
  • Punctual and diligent
  • Ability to remain standing for several hours

Schedule:

  • Two- or three-hour shifts on a set day of the week
Adoption counsellor

Volunteer – Adoption Counsellor

The Adoption Counsellor is responsible for having animals adopted into attentive and responsible homes. He or she must work in a team with the other staff members.

The Adoption Counsellor must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the Adoption Counsellor must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times.

Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Adoption Management
  2. Familiarize yourself with all animals put up for adoption.
  3. Refer clients to animals compatible with their lifestyle and ensure an ideal match.
  4. Review adoption requests made by clients.
  5. Advise new adopters on animals’ adaptation to their new homes.
  6. Inform new adopters about the responsibilities involved in adopting a pet.
  7. Fill out all adoption-related administrative documents.
  8. Assist the adoption team with various tasks when there are no adopters on hand.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Good general knowledge of various animal species and breeds
  • Comfortable with all type of animals
  • Knowledge of animal behaviour
  • Knowledge of the basic care required by every animal species available for adoption
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Good customer service skills
  • Highly developed critical thinking skills, sound judgment and good analytical abilities
  • Ability to work with a multidisciplinary team
  • Ability to adapt to change
  • Good organizational skills
  • Bilingual

Education level: High school

Languages (spoken):  French and English

Languages (written):  French and English

Risks:

  • Bites
  • Scratches
  • Falls
  • Pushing/jostling
Administrative assistant, adoption

Volunteer – Administrative Assistant, Adoption

The volunteer in charge of providing administrative support for adoption services must help the adoption team with organizing files, recording microchip and health insurance data, and assembling adoption kits.

This volunteer must work in a team with the other staff members.

The volunteer must at all times obey the safety rules put in place to reduce the risk of accidents as well as the biosecurity procedures established to minimize the spread of disease and infection.

Like all employees of Services Animaliers de la Rive-Sud, the volunteer must respect the organization’s mission and code of ethics at all times and take part in the continuing education program.

Duties and Responsibilities

File Organization

Organize the files of adopted or transferred animals in accordance with the established procedure.

Recording of Microchip and Health Insurance Data

Enter microchip and health insurance data in the respective systems.

Assembly of Adoption Kits

Assemble dog and cat adoption kits, following the existing model.

Skills and Other Requirements

Skill Profile:

  • Ability to follow clear instructions
  • Enjoy doing administrative work
  • Good organizational skills
  • Able to work independently
  • Punctual and diligent

Schedule:

  • One three-hour shift a week; day to be determined

To Become a Volunteer

First, fill out a volunteer application form.

You can also pick up the form at the shelter, at 1470 De Coulomb St. in Boucherville.

All our volunteer positions are filled at this time. You will be placed on the waiting list, and we will contact you as soon as a position matching your profile becomes available (roughly six months’ wait).

We receive several requests a day. As a result, we are unable to tell you exactly when you will be able to start volunteering.

 

Volunteer Incompatibility

We reserve the right to refuse applicants who do not appear to meet the basic requirements for a volunteer position.

Unfortunately, we cannot accept individuals who wish to do only a few hours of volunteer work for a school project or who wish to work on an irregular or occasional basis.