We would like to thank you for your dedication to making San Antonio a No Kill city.
Already a Volunteer?
Sign up for shifts
Click HERE for a complete list of volunteer opportunities.
PetSmart Everyday Adoption Center: 8520 FourWinds Dr. San Antonio,Tx 78239
Petco Adoption Center: 6001 NW Loop 410 # 103 San Antonio, Tx 78238
SAPA! Medical Clinic: 9107 Marbach Rd. #109 San Antonio,Tx 78245
SAPA! @ Animal Care Services Bld.1: 4710 TX-151 San Antonio,Tx 78227
Volunteers are required to:
- Submit online application, which includes downloading and signing a Volunteer Agreement and a Release of Liability Waiver.
- Complete a general orientation session
- All volunteers 16+ must Complete a City of San Antonio Volunteer Security Background Check
- Commit to a minimum of 4- 6 hours of volunteer work per month
- Be able to work independently
- IF UNDER 18
- 16-17 years old – provide a completed Unaccompanied Minor Volunteer Agreement and Release of Liability Waiver form. A parent or guardian will need to attend a orientation session with ALL minors.
- 12-15 years old – volunteer with a parent or guardian at ALL TIMES after both have completed a orientation session. ( youth and parent/guardian must each submit an individual online application )
- under 12 years old – Unfortunately San Antonio Pets Alive does not offer any volunteer opportunities for this age group, nor will they be able to accompany any volunteer during service
- Attend on-going additional training sessions required by SAPA!
- Treat animals in our care with kindness and concern for their welfare
- Represent themselves and SAPA! in a professional manner and treat clients, staff and other volunteers with respect.
Please complete our Volunteer Application prior to attending orientation. After submitting the application, you will receive an email with more information.
Once you have completed your volunteer application, you may register for orientation with your new volunteer account. Orientaton will cover goals and policies of the organization, as well as explaining volunteer opportunities. We will ask for your completed City of San Antonio Volunteer Security Background Check at orientation.
There is a nonrefundable registration fee which includes a San Antonio Pets Alive volunteer t-shirt, name tag , and training materials. The program fee schedule is as follows:
* General & Community Service Volunteers- $20
*Court Order Service Volunteers- $30
Note that the registration fee also helps fund SAPA! programs if you are able to donate at a higher fee, we appreciate the additional support.
Orientation will be held in the Annex Building of the Animal Care Services facility located on Hwy 151, next to the San Antonio Food Bank or at our PetSmart facility located in Windcrest.
Frequently Asked Questions about Volunteering
Do you offer an opportunity for Community Service hours to be completed?
If you are seeking community service hours for school or an organization we allow individuals to complete service within our organization. You may request a community service form and have an authorized SAPA! staff member initial your time sheet after each time you volunteer. COURT ORDERED community service must be approved by the program manager to ensure it does not go against the atmosphere of SAPA!
Why are you charging a fee to volunteer?
SAPA! solely rescues dogs and cats that have been slated for euthanasia at the city shelter, with the innovative life saving programs we have in place these fees help fund our programs and to help continue to save lives everyday. Community service is at a higher base as with non-profits only 10% of individuals remain as constant companions to where a very few people continue to volunteer after they have reached their service requirement.
Are there any on-going requirements for Volunteers?
We ask that all volunteers commit to at least 4-6 hours per month of service. Our volunteer management system (Volgistics) has a licensing fee for each user, so we regularly remove volunteers who are not active or meet the requirements within a 90 day time frame. Volunteers who have not volunteered within a year will be asked to re-complete an orientation.
Additionally, we require all volunteers to adhere to the SAPA! Volunteer Policies. You must agree to these policies in order to become part of our live-saving family. Any questions or concerns about the policies may be directed to email@example.com
I attended a orientation, now what?
Log into your Volunteer Portal to look for volunteer opportunities. At any time, you may email firstname.lastname@example.org for information, direction, or other assistance related to SAPA! volunteering.
Can I just come and walk dogs?
Yes most definitely, please note that only SAPA! trained volunteers walk dogs. You will receive instructions on how to become a trained SAPA! dog walker when you attend volunteer orientation.
Can my group set up a service day?
Here’s how Group Volunteering works at SAPA!:
- Complete a Group Volunteer Application, we take groups of 20 or less for 2-3 hour shifts, with limited availability on the weekends.
- We ask that groups support SAPA! by donating the supplies needed to participate in the task(s) they are assigned to. These items may include things like: peanut butter, dog treats, cat litter, bleach, hand sanitizer, laundry detergent, dish soap, towels/blankets, etc.
- Volunteer Groups fill up FAST and operate on a first come, first served basis. Hosting calendars are created on a monthly basis and we do our best to accommodate every group, but due to staff and volunteer bandwidth – sometimes that’s just not possible. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility. As always, we are happy help you run your own supply or donation drive to support SAPA!
- At San Antonio Pets Alive! we rely on our volunteers. So, we ask that groups commit to their scheduled volunteer shift, and give a minimum of 48 hours notice if there will be a cancellation. Groups that fail to provide notice will be asked to support SAPA! by attending our scheduled orientations and through fundraising or supply drives.
- Every temporary volunteer must complete and sign the SAPA! Short Term Volunteer Agreement before they will be allowed to volunteer. Volunteers under the age of 18 must have a waiver signed by their parent or guardian. These waivers can be sent prior to your shift and you can bring them on the day of your scheduled shift. For multiple shifts, each shift date must be written on the form.
- Volunteer Groups will be limited to handling certain dogs in the same capacity as a fully oriented and trained volunteer. They are asked to assist with facility duties to include but are not limited to: laundry, kong stuffing, general cleaning, gardening, painting, donation sorting, general handiwork, treat bin filling and bowl washing.
- For anyone interested in long-term, multiple volunteering shifts (more than once per quarter),: attending one of our general orientation sessions.
What Can I do as a San Antonio Pets Alive Volunteer
Dog Walking / Playgroup & Enrichment
Volunteers interested in this role we be required to attend SAPA Dog Handling training session. It is normally held on weekends following Volunteer Orientation. We cannot guarantee that this training will be held after every orientation, as it depends on the trainer’s availability. This training will focus on three primary skills:
- Body language; How to properly read and describe a dog’s body language
- Safety: How to safely interact with all of our on-site animals
- Proper utilization of tools/equipment ( leashes, collars, harnesses )
You can register for Dog Walking 101 through your volunteer portal.
Assist adoption staff facilitate onsite adoptions by answering questions or concern from the general public. General support to facility duties to include but not limited to cleaning, sweeping ,mopping, laundry, dishes etc.
Did you know that you can obtain volunteer hours by fostering. Provide temporary care for cats or dogs in your home until they can be adopted. If you are interested in fostering, please fill out a Foster Care Volunteer Application. See our Foster page for more information.
Assist in clinic areas such as greeting and animal recovery. Assist with day to day operation of the facility and ensure pets are up to date on all medial requirements prior to attending events or going to a adoption facility.
Parvo is a contagious disease among puppies that can be cured with treatment. Help care for puppies that have parvovirus in our isolated intensive care unit * Additional training maybe required *
Our organization is completely dependent on donations. This committee assists in finding individual and business sponsors; researching and writing grants; overseeing donor recognition; developing and assisting with fundraising events.
Transports animals/supplies to and from SAPA! facilities or partners via your own vehicle
Promote SAPA!’s mission and recruit volunteers, fosters, adopters, and donors at special events around town. Work at info tables and booths, provide animal care for our adoptable animals that may be present looking for a forever home.