CAN YOU SPARE TIME TO HELP LEND A PAW?
We run an active volunteer program and there are many different opportunities to help.
You can give as little or as much time as you are able, safe in the knowledge that you are doing something to help homeless dogs.
Before applying please consider these points
Time – While we value all of our volunteers, currently we desperately need people who can commit to a day a week at least, dog walking at Cheshire Dogs Home is between 11am – 1pm due to opening and feeding times.
Emotional Endurance – The dogs home is a very emotional place, many dogs have had difficult lives and sad stories, working with these dogs is incredibly rewarding but there are times when our volunteers and staff will struggle emotionally.
Physical Ability– Dog walking is the most exciting time of the dogs’ days, they are excited and will jump and pull, very few of the dogs will trot nicely at heal. We do not expect anyone to handle a dog they are not physically capable to. Walking the dogs requires a certain amount of endurance if you intend to walk several dogs whilst here.
Application forms are at the bottom of this page
We currently only have limited volunteer opportunities available at both homes
DOG WALKING & CARE – Taking our dogs for walks on the lead, in the public greenspace near our site. Playing with the dogs off-lead in our secure areas. Brushing, socialising, training, just giving extra TLC.
This is of course the primary volunteer role – most volunteers wish to interact directly with the dogs, and we hope to get all healthy dogs out daily. Dog walking is available 7 days a week, mornings and afternoons.
KENNEL BUDDYING– Kennel buddying has now been started up at Cheshire Dogs home, this is for volunteers to spend time with the dogs in their kennels, providing stimulation whilst we are open to the public, between 1pm – 4pm (3pm on Sundays), this is open to all volunteers who have spent time walking.
MEET & GREET VISITORS – We need volunteers to welcome our visitors, talk about the reason for their visit, and direct them as appropriate. Sometimes we place a special dog with a volunteer, to increase this dog’s chances of getting a home by meeting prospective adopters on arrival.
DOGGIE HOUSEKEEPING – Every dog has a bed and a bowl every day, and we need to ensure a clean supply. We have dog kitchen and laundry facilities, and loading and unloading washers is an essential volunteer role.
MAINTENANCE & GARDENING – Keeping the site clean and tidy. Helping to ensure everything is in its proper place. We have a busy site, and we need help with gardening, both for formal areas & flower displays, and open areas, grounds & car parks. Maintenance can also also comprise packing boxes, unpacking boxes, shifting dog food and handling barrows & brooms!
FUNDRAISING – There are various different roles within fundraising, for example
Checking and replacing collecting boxes and emptying food donation bins in shops and supermarkets.
Collecting and encouraging donations of items for sale in our charity shops.
Fundraising at your workplace. Organising or taking part in sponsored dog walks.
Making items for sale. Knitted toys are always popular, as are gifts and seasonal items, and upcycled items including handmade dog bedding. If you like knitting, cardmaking, sewing, baking cakes or other creative crafts, you can help the Dogs’ Home even if you would find it hard to come regularly to the site.
CHARITY SHOP ASSISTANT – Helping out at one of our Charity shops in Harpurhey, Reddish or Padgate. The location of the shops is in the ‘Support Us’ section of our Website.
EDUCATION & COMMUNITY – An engagement and outreach role which is sometimes available and needs skilled volunteers. Includes giving talks and presentations about responsible dog ownership, especially going into schools and youth organisations. Teaching children respect for animals (CRB check required). Partnering with other organisations.
PHOTOGRAPHY – Photographing our dogs for adoption and taking photographs at events. Photographs are needed for our literature, website, local newspapers and for social media.
WRITING & PUBLICATIONS – We need articles and news for our publications, everything from funny dog stories to skilled health and training advice. Writing is another activity suited to volunteers who would like to contribute from home. Production of publications is also a volunteer role.
HELP AT EVENTS – Helping at public events, both on our premises and representing the Home at other venues. Running a stall with merchandise, a raffle or a tombola at fundraising events. Helping hands to set up and clear away particularly welcome!
HELP IN OFFICE – Helping our staff with administration, especially at times when they are particularly busy. Helping with mailings and preparation for events.
ADOPTION FOLLOW UP – Helping adopters complete the necessary paperwork. Following up with a phone call after 2 weeks, and again after 3 months, to see how the dog has settled and to encourage neutering etc. This role is subject to our returning to normal operations and is currently under review.
DIY & PROJECTS – Assisting with DIY under the supervision of our Maintenance staff. Occasionally we need help with painting and various jobs. We welcome volunteers with trade skills of all kinds to register for one-off projects, so we can call on you when we have something in mind.
GROOMER – We encourage ALL our volunteers to brush the dogs, but this is a separate skilled volunteering role, for someone with relevant training and experience to give a professional de-matt, and do ears, nails etc. If you are studying grooming, you could help too. We have facilities and equipment available on site.
Please note that most of our volunteering roles need further discussion with management and/or staff, to review the new volunteer’s suitability for the desired role, and to make arrangements for training or supervision. Some roles need additional briefings or training provided by staff or by experienced volunteers.
You are also welcome to talk to us about any ideas, skills or experience you have which are not listed.
Please note:- Volunteers must be 18 years of age and over or be accompanied by a parent or a legal guardian before being allowed to volunteer.
UNFORTUNATELY WE ARE UNABLE TO REPLY TO UNSUCCESSFUL APPLICATIONS
A covering letter explaining our volunteering program can be found here:
Download an Application Form to volunteer at Manchester Dogs Home
Download an Application Form for Cheshire Dogs Home
If you email or post your completed Application Form back to the Home we will be in touch shortly.
Please Note: To help reduce costs the invitations to our Volunteer Induction Sessions are sent our via email, please check your spam and junk folders regularly to ensure you don’t miss it.
Volunteers on Facebook
We have now set up a Facebook page just for our volunteers, click the link below and sign up today!