The shelter is accepting lost pets by appointment only starting Wednesday, December 21. Learn More



Volunteers are a vital part of our organization. With their help, we are able to meet our mission of “Advancing the welfare of animals and promoting positive relationships between animals and people.” You too can be a part of this mission and join a team of compassionate animal lovers.

Volunteer Requirements

  • 16 years of age or older.
  • Must be able to get to our shelter location in Tacoma for volunteer shifts. We do not offer remote volunteer opportunities at this time.
  • Able to make a minimum commitment of 6 hours per month for at least 6 months.
  • Able to squat, bend, twist, lift, or stand for long periods of time when working directly with the animals.
  • A people person, as well as an animal person.
  • Committed to creating a compassionate community for not only animals but also for the people that love them.

How to Become a Volunteer

Get started with Volunteer Orientation!

Learn a little about our organization, volunteer roles, and next steps to becoming a volunteer through our online Volunteer Orientation course.

If you have any questions, please email us at 

Individual Volunteer Opportunities

UPDATE: We are in need of Dog Walking volunteers who can commit to a weekly scheduled shift of two hours minimum and are able to handle large and strong dogs! 

The shelter has more than 30 volunteer positions, from entry-level to team leadership. Some volunteer positions are highly selective and require certain skills and/or prior experience in a respective field. Below are some of our most in-need positions.

  • Administrative Assistant
  • Animal Transport
  • Bath Brigade
  • Cat Care Specialist
  • Customer Service Aid
  • Dog Enrichment
  • Dog Walker
  • Events and Outreach
  • Laundry Folding Crew
  • Pet Food Pantry
  • Pet Store Liaison
  • Photography
  • Purrtime Specialist (cat enrichment)
  • Rabbit Enrichment Specialist

…and many more!

Group Volunteer Opportunities

Our group volunteer sessions enable your team to help shelter animals by providing assistance in large-scale groundskeeping, deep cleaning of animal care areas, and other helpful projects that make a difference in the lives of pets in need and staff members’ daily operations. Check out our handout for more information: Group Volunteer Opportunities


How old do you have to be to volunteer?

All volunteers must be at least 16 years of age. Please note, we are not able to accommodate volunteers under 16 years of age even with a parent/guardian volunteering with them. Some positions, such as Dog Walking and Animal Transport, have specific age restrictions beyond our minimum age.

What is the time commitment for volunteering?

We ask that all volunteers make a commitment of six hours per month for six months. Advanced positions will require varying minimum commitments.

The average volunteer shift is two hours long.

Can I complete court-ordered community service with your organization?

The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County does not offer opportunities for court-ordered community service.

Can I complete school-required service hours?

We are happy to accommodate students who are required to fulfill community service hours for school. However, we are unable to sign off on any hours for school until after students have completed the six-month commitment.

What are the timeframes that I can volunteer?

Volunteers assist staff at the shelter from 7:00 am to 6:30 pm seven days a week including holidays.


Spotlight on our Volunteers

Volunteers are at the heart of the Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County’s success. They not only help our shelter staff they also improve the quality of life for shelter animals.

Read Their Stories