So much to do . . . every single day of the year! HSJC volunteers contribute to the care of the shelter’s animals in a variety of ways. We value each and every person and the gift they give through their time and talent! Some of the opportunities available to volunteers are listed below.  However, because we are fortunate to have so many dedicated volunteers, there are not always positions available.  The Volunteer Coordinator keeps applications for six months and will contact applicants as positions become available.  Applications may be obtained at the shelter or by clicking on the following link to submit online.

Volunteers must be 14 years old or older.

  • 14-15 years old: must volunteer with a parent/guardian, and only for specific roles
  • 16-17 years old: may volunteer solo with parent/guardian consent
  • 18 years or older: may volunteer in any capacity

We ask volunteers for a long-term commitment to volunteering and cannot always accommodate those that wish to complete short-term service requirements.

The Volunteer Coordinator will reach out within 5-10 business days after receiving your volunteer application.

Apply to Become a Volunteer


A.M. Shelter Assistant / Cats

Mornings are a very busy time at the shelter with lots of cleaning to be done and lots of hungry mouths to feed. Volunteers help tremendously by feeding cats and kittens, washing and sanitizing dishes, doing laundry and cleaning our three community cat rooms (with plenty of cat cuddling time!).

A.M. Shelter Assistant / Dogs

Volunteers work under the direction of a staff member each morning cleaning and sanitizing our dog kennels and setting up each kennel with freshly cleaned blankets and toys.  Some physical labor is involved and rubber boots are recommended.

Special Events & Fundraising

Throughout the year, our shelter hosts or participates in various community and fundraising events such as Trivia Night, Rabies Clinics, the Fur Ball and the Furry Friends 5K.  These events raise a large portion of the funds we need to care for the lost and homeless pets of Jefferson County. They also offer the public a chance to learn more about our shelter and provide a wide variety of volunteer opportunities.

Office Support

If you love to keep everything in its place, then we may have just the right spot for you! We often have volunteer opportunities available for those who would like to assist with clerical tasks such as filing, organizing and preparing materials for events.

Foster Care

Are you interested in opening your home to shelter animals (predominantly kittens or mother cats with litters) in need of temporary foster care? Foster homes free up much needed cage space at the shelter while also positively affecting the health and socialization of the fostered animals. We furnish all food, supplies and instructions – you provide the temporary housing, love and care!

Click here to fill out the foster application.

A.M. Shelter Assistant / Small Animals

Help is needed each morning in our small animal room, feeding the ‘littles’ and cleaning their cages.  We have a variety of small animals including ferrets, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits and rats.  If you love tending to and socializing small animals, this is just the job for you!

P.M. Shelter Assistant

Each afternoon, volunteers help with a number of tasks such as laundry, dishes, filling KONGS, walking dogs and re-feeding cats and kittens.

Satellite Adoption Center

PetSmart West of Madison partners with the HSJC to provide additional adoption opportunities for the shelter’s animals. Whether it fits your schedule to spend an afternoon staffing an information booth at the store, or stopping in to spot clean cages and socialize with adoptable cats, we’d love to have you as part of our team.

Grounds and Maintenance

We always appreciate assistance in keeping the shelter’s grounds and buildings looking warm and welcoming. Let us know if you’d like to help with landscaping or weeding, or maybe you have carpentry skills that we could put to good use?

Other Ways to Help

If you have any other special talents, we’d love to hear from you. Volunteers and their contributions are an essential part of the HSJC’s operations. Our hardworking and friendly staff is very appreciative of any and all volunteer assistance.