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The Escambia County Animal Shelter is a busy place, and it takes more than just the paid staff to keep it operational. We are always looking for volunteers to help with a number of projects in and out of the facility. The following are some of the many volunteer opportunities at the shelter:

  • Socializing dogs and cats to help them get ready for adoption
  • Assisting staff with cleaning, feeding and general care of the animals
  • Assisting staff and volunteers at offsite adoption events
  • Participating in and/or conducting humane education programs
  • Creating toys for our enrichment programs

To become a volunteer at the shelter, you must complete an online application or stop in to complete an application in-person. Please email all completed online applications to Once we receive your application and you have been cleared by our HR department, we will schedule an orientation with the Volunteer/Foster Coordinator to start your training.

We have three age groups for volunteering. All volunteers have to have completed the approval process before they can begin volunteering.

  • Adults: anyone over the age of 18
  • Young adults: youth ages 15-17 can volunteer at the shelter without the supervision of an adult (the staff may request that the young adult have to work with a parent or legal guardian in certain situations).
  • Children: youth between ages 12-15 are allowed to volunteer under the supervision of a parent or legal guardian who has also been approved as a volunteer at the shelter.


The Escambia County Animal Shelter is always struggling with issues of overcrowding at the shelter and how to handle animals that have special needs. Fostering is a great way to help the shelter with these issues. All fosters must complete the volunteer process and then work with the shelter foster coordinator to get matched up with a foster friend. We have different types of fosters depending on the animal’s situation.

Bottle Feeding Fosters: Throughout the year, the shelter takes in an abundance of puppies and kittens that are too young to eat on their own. We need individuals that are willing to feed and care for these pets until they are old enough for adoption.

Medical Fosters: Occasionally, the shelter receives dogs or cats that may need medical care before they can be made available for adoption. Fosters who can provide care for these animals during treatment and recovery provides these animals an opportunity to be adopted that they wouldn’t have had before.

Behavior Fosters: Sometimes the shelter gets animals that need some help with behavioral issues to help prepare them for adoption. We also occasionally have animals that have been at the shelter for an extended period of time and are showing signs of kennel stress. Helping these animals with socialization issues or behavioral problems not only gives these animals an opportunity for adoption, but it also creates space at the shelter for other animals.

Legal Hold Fosters: Occasionally, animals are confiscated by Animal Control that may need to be held for extended periods of time. These fosters require special approval by animal control in addition to the normal requirements. These animals may be considered evidence and would have special handling requirements.

Participating in the Escambia County Animal Shelter program can be rewarding for both the foster and the animals. The temporary home that you provide will make a difference not only to the animal that you foster, but another animal that can use that space at the shelter.

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