Vitality in Volunteering

Volunteers (from left) Tom, Christine, Julie and Joanne assisting at a December 2023 Puppy Pop-Up

April is National Volunteer Month, and Dakin is proud to salute our nearly 500 volunteers who tackle a variety of animal care (fostering, dog walking, and enrichment, among others) and non-animal care tasks (event support, laundry, thrift shop, and more) every day.

Community Engagement Manager Kaitlyn Holloway oversees the volunteer program, assisted by Volunteer Coordinator Luis Roche. Following the COVID-enforced volunteer shutdown, the program focused on providing participants with training, mentors, tools, and fulfilling roles for an ideal experience. It’s important that volunteers feel supported and heard, as their contributions to the well-being of animals make a significant impact.

Cat enrichment efforts have resulted in more adoptions for harder-to-place cats.  Volunteers spending time enriching cats and dogs provide valuable information about the pet’s health and temperament to enhance that pet’s care. Some volunteers contribute to the pet biographies found on Dakin’s website (our most-visited page). Foster caregivers report on the pets in their care. “We have lots of eyes on these animals, and we can also identify things very quickly when more people are interacting with them,” noted Kaitlyn.

When new programs are launched, more volunteers are needed. In the past few years, Dakin has created several initiatives to enhance the quality of life for shelter animals, with others debuting in the months ahead, including:

  • Cat TLC/Cat Pawsitive/Advanced Cat Enrichment (Interaction for in-shelter cats)
  • Dog Enrichment (Interaction for in-shelter dogs)
  • Mod Squad (Dog behavior modification – starting spring 2024)
  • Kitten Intensive Care Unit (Care for at-risk kittens – starting summer 2024)

Our staff and volunteers are united in compassion to make Dakin a safety net for animals and the people who love them.

Interested in volunteering? Click here to sign up today!

Monetary value of volunteer work at Dakin

  • 2021:  $1,408,649 (49,357 hours)
  • 2022:  $1,973,016 (65,877 hours)
  • 2023:  $2,404,480 (75,600 hours)

Currently recruiting volunteers for:

  • Kitten ICU (KICU)
  • Transport assistance
  • Foster caregivers