To get more information

on The Friends of the New Haven Animal Shelter volunteer group, to make donations and show support for our group.

Take a look at our Happy Pet Tails!.

animal planet

Kurandra Pet Beds

For great deals on dog and cat beds, visit Kuranda to view their beds, and while you are visiting make sure to check out the Donate-a-Bed program!


Our last new volunteer orientation was August 13th. We have not yet scheduled the next orientation, but it will be posted on this page.

The volunteer general orientation is a mandatory first step in order to become a volunteer with our organization. There is no need to sign up in advance, you can just come to the shelter on the specified date. The general orientation will last approximately 1 hour and includes a basic overview of shelter policies, a description of volunteer opportunities, and a tour of the shelter. If you are interested in being a dog handler, you will be assigned to a mentor who will work with you until you are ready to handle our shelter dogs on your own. If you are interested in working with the cats, there will be a separate training session which will take place after the basic orientation. If you can't stay for the cat training session, we will schedule additional sessions until everyone is trained.

All volunteers must be over 18 years old, be able to read our cage cards and have a valid email address. We only have orientation sessions 3 or 4 times a year because the time between sessions is needed to train the new volunteers, so please make every effort to attend when one comes up. The orientation session takes place at the shelter and is usually scheduled on a Sunday at 11AM. When a session is scheduled, we will post the date on the main page of this website and on our Facebook page. There is limited seating there, so please bring a folding chair if you can.

Volunteers are always needed and it can be such a fullfilling experience.  We need dedicated people in the following areas:

  • To walk, play, socialize and train pets to be the best they can be.
  • To bathe dogs on Thursday or Friday prior to an adoption event.
  • To participate in our adoption events throughout the Greater New Haven area usually held on the first Saturday of each month. The events are from 11 am to 3 pm. We need dog and cat handlers to assist the public in choosing a new companion. We also need help loading the adoption van prior to events and unloading the van after the event. Mini events also occur monthly without the adoption van.
  • To assist with transportation and help find rescues.
  • We need cat, dog and small animal fosters to provide a warm, safe environment for healing or just learning how to be with a family.
  • To help with our various fund raisers and educational programs.