Volunteer Program

Volunteer Program

Volunteers are very important at Nassau Humane Society.  As a non-profit organization, we rely on the assistance of caring, animal-loving individuals in all of our programs.


1.      Volunteers must be at least 12-years-old to volunteer at NHS.  Anyone under the age of 16 requires a legal guardian to accompany them at all times and are not allowed to handle animals unless approved by staff.  Volunteers under the age of 18-years-old are allowed to work independently but can have restrictions depending on the activity.

2.      Minimum commitment of 2 hours per month.  It is very helpful if the volunteer can commit to a weekly or bi-weekly schedule.

Examples: Every Wednesday from 2-4pm or Alternate Saturdays from 12-2pm

3.      Must present completed volunteer application and valid photo identification.

4.      Must be able to communicate professionally, as human interaction is a requirement of all volunteer roles.

5.      Must understand and fulfill all responsibilities of their role independently.

6.      Must read and comprehend detailed policy and protocol information, as well as being able to remember and follow shelter rules.

7.      Must be able to hear, see, and interpret animal behavior and body language.

8.      Be able to physically fulfill the duties of their volunteer role.

   Most volunteer roles require volunteers to: be able to stand, and/or walk for at least 2 hours; be able to lift and carry up to 20 lbs.; be able to reach and lift; possess vision abilities including close vision, distance vision and depth perception; be able to talk to customers, employees and other volunteers.

9.      Must be able to emotionally manage a workplace that can be stressful with a positive attitude.


Volunteers who are unable to volunteer independently must have an adult partner, who is at least 21 years of age, to complete training and volunteer alongside them at all times.

Volunteering independently means that, without assistance, you are able to:
•Complete training without modifications
•Read our Kennel Cards
•Understand written and spoken instruction
•Handle animals physically
•Understand and complete tasks for the position you choose
•Communicate with other Volunteers, Staff, and Customers


1.      Attend a Volunteer Information Session  

   You will learn facts and important information about Nassau Humane Society. You will also learn about our volunteer opportunities and complete a Shelter Volunteer Application if you are interested in continuing on with training.

   If you are still interested in volunteering after the information session, we will provide volunteer applications for completion. 

2.      Complete Basic Training  

   You will receive a tour of Nassau Humane Society. You will also receive detailed information about the workings of our shelter, disease prevention, and customer service.

3.      Complete an Intro to Shelter Canines/Felines Course  

   All potential Volunteers who will interact with dogs/cats are required to complete this course. You will learn the proper way to interact with shelter dogs/cats, learn basic handling techniques, and learn how to deal with problem situations.

4.      Complete a Shadow Day  

   You will spend a shift with an experienced Volunteer or Staff Member in the area you are interested in donating time. This will help us determine if you are volunteering in the area best suited for you and our needs can be met.

   Training is set up so that you may complete all steps within 4 weeks. Once you have completed these steps, you will be a Nassau Humane Society Volunteer and can start donating time and love to the animals in our shelter.

5.      Complete a Buddy Day for Canine Volunteers  

   After successfully completing a Shadow Day and setting a weekly or bi-weekly schedule, Canine Volunteers will complete a Buddy Day. There is a lot of information learned throughout training and because the tasks related to our Canine Positions are so involved, we want to be sure you are comfortable before volunteering independently. On this day, an experienced Volunteer or employee will partner you during your first Volunteer Shift for support and guidance.

If you have any questions, please call our shelter or contact the Volunteer Manager.