Volunteer with Animal Care and Protective Services

If you love animals and love giving back this is for you!

Current Volunteers
Current volunteers click on this link to review schdules, upcoming events, training, and to review your shift.
Help Wanted

Join the team of lifesaving volunteers at Animal Care and Protective services and make a difference in the lives of the 12,000 animals that enter the shelter each year.

At ACPS we rely on the over 400 volunteers who contributed over 17,000 hours of service last year. We could not save the number of animals that we do without our incredible volunteer team.

Volunteer holding Dog

We need volunteers to assist with just about everything we do, but our current biggest needs are:

  • Medical clinic and foster assistants-assist veterinary technicians with animal handling and daily care. Support staff in the foster office, treatment area, surgery and vaccine clinic.
  • Playgroup runner/assistant-Take dogs back and forth from kennels to play yards for playgroup.
  • Dog walkers-Walk, play and handle dogs to give them a break from the kennel. Dog walkers should be comfortable handling dogs that are 50# or more. 
  • Enrichment volunteers-Assist the behavior team with in kennel enrichment items including click for calm, preparing and distributing treats/toys and reading to shy dogs.
  • Greeters/Receptionists- Provide excellent customer service to visitors to the shelter. Greet visitors at the front door and help direct them to the appropriate location or resource.   Help create a positive and fun experience for visitors.
  • Adoption Counselors-Assist interested adopters with interactions, review medical and behavioral notes and help adopters choose the right pet for their family.
  • Off-site event volunteers- Assist with setup/breakdown of off-site events. Assist with adoption counseling and interactions. Provide enrichment and walks for pets at the event.
  • Photographers- Take professional photos of adoptable dogs and cats. Upload photos into shelter software program.
  • Pet biography writer-Creative minds needed to help market adoptable dogs and cats. Use your expertise to help us write bios for adoption websites and social media to promote the pets for adoption
Ready to get started?
  1. Volunteers between the ages of 14-16 must volunteer with a parent/guardian.  Volunteers age 16 and older are able to volunteer independently.  If you are a bright futures schloar we encourage you to complete your hours with us.  Unfortutanely we are not able tot assist with court mandated community service hours. 
  2. Fill this form out to help us get to know you.
  3. Attend an orientation.
  4. Complete a background screening.
  5. Get Started!
Foster applicants

Why do Shelter Animals Need Foster Care?

Foster parents fulfill a critical component of our life-saving work in the shelter. ACPS takes in an average of 32 animals per day, 365 days per year! Our staff works tirelessly to care for all of the incoming animals, but shelter space and resources are limited. Placing animals into foster care frees up much needed cat and dog kennels and allows our facility to provide care and attention to new animals entering our system daily.
Any adult (18 years or older) with spare time and space and a willingness to help animals-in-need can serve as a foster parent for ACPS. Foster terms can range from a few days or weeks to a month or more, depending on the preferences of the foster parent and the needs of the animal. We are always in need of foster homes for the most at risk animal populations, including:

  • Moms with nursing kittens or puppies
  • Orphaned kittens and puppies
  • Animals too young for spay/neuter
  • Animals recovering from surgery or who are sick
  • Animals who need behavior training or socialization
  • Animals too shy or timid in the adoption center environment

For more information about the ACPS foster program, please contact our foster care department directly at

Save a Life… Become a Foster Parent Today!

If you are interested in becoming a foster parent for ACPS, please complete the Foster Pet Volunteer Profile and return it to ACPS located at 2020 Forest Street or
Upon receipt of the completed foster pet volunteer profile, the foster care department will contact you with more detailed information about being an ACPS foster parent and invite you to join the ACPS Foster Communication Facebook page (closed group). This is where we post our daily foster needs for animals in our shelter. This is also a convenient way to communicate with the foster care department, as well as with other ACPS foster parents.

Division Chief thoughts on ACPS
"I personally want to thank all the volunteers that make our shelter such a wonderful and inviting place. Sometimes it is even hard for me to tell which are volunteers and which are full-time employees, because of how many hours they are working at the shelter. The happiness you bring to the animals and staff is immeasurable."

Thank you for your interest in volunteering at ACPS! We care for between 6,000 and 8,000 cats, dogs and wild animals every year, and couldn’t do it without our compassionate, dedicated, long-term volunteers.

Volunteer Hours

Monday 8am-5pm
Tuesday- Friday 8am-7pm
Saturday-Sunday 8am-6pm

Adoption Hours

Monday Closed
Tuesday - Friday 12P.M. - 7 P.M.
Saturday - Sunday 10 A.M. - 6 P.M.


2020 Forest Street
Jacksonville, FL 32204
Map this location
Phone: (904) 630-CITY (2489)

Purina Petco Foundation

Donate Box

Please Support Animal Care & Protective Services

Donate Today!