To inquire about volunteering, please email vphvolunteer@phs.hctx.net or read below for answers to most frequently asked questions.

Volunteers Welcome!


Whether you enjoy working with cats, dogs or people in our community, we have a variety of volunteer opportunities available that are sure to fit your interests and work with your schedule



Ready to get started?!  The first step is to submit an application on-line. Click here to begin.

If you have any questions, please email  VPHvolunteer@phs.hctx.net




All volunteers must:

  • Be at least 16 years of age to volunteer. Sorry - we cannot make an exception to this policy. 
  • If under 18 years of age, a legal parent or guardian must accompany them to volunteer orientation/first volunteer shift.
  • Must complete a background check screening.
  • Log in and out while at Harris County Pets each time you volunteer.  

Individuals wishing to volunteer at Harris County Pets are required to provide an electronic signature demonstrating their willingness to adhere to the required statements, releases, and agreements of the Volunteer program via the online application.  You will be asked to sign the following documents when you apply to volunteer.  You can review them here in advance and for future reference. 


Kennel Assistant

FIRST SHIFT AS A VOLUNTEER.  Kennel Assistants assists the kennel staff with the entire cleaning process: assembling cleaning supplies, moving animals, cleaning/sanitizing animal kennels, and providing animals with food and water.  

Volunteers can also help our shelter staff with a variety of other tasks such as:

Assisting visitors with signing in and providing them the paperwork they will need to fill out
Escorting visitors searching for their lost pets
Assembling adoption packets with information and resources for new fur parents
Refilling supplies for our foster department
Escorting pets who are ready to go home to their new family

Kennel Assistants are one of the only groups of volunteers allowed in the building during morning hours when we are not open to the public.  Kennel Assistants are vital to the healthy and safety of our animals. 

Dog Walker

We are always in need of dog walkers! Taking a dog out to our playground helps decrease the dog's stress levels, improves behavioral, mental and emotional health and increases socialization.  All of these factors help increase a dog's chance of adoption!

Training is provided by a kennel staff member who will go over safely removing dogs from kennels, tips on walking a dog and knowing which dogs are eligible to be walked.

Dog walkers are welcome when we are open to the public. 

Mobile Adoptions & Events Team

If you love animals and want to engage with the community outside of our facility to spread the word about responsible pet ownership and animal safety, please join us at our events!  As part of our community outreach and education efforts, Harris County Pets conducts vaccination clinics and spay/neuter events and attends health fairs and festivals year round. Our upcoming events are posted on the home page of our web site.

Volunteers are the lifeline of our mobile adoption events. Mobile adoption volunteers walk/feed/water pets at the event and assist the public with adoptions.Shifts are available in blocks of 3-4 hours, and volunteers may either meet at Harris County Pets or at the event location. A staff member or volunteer team leader will always be present to answer any questions and assist with volunteer duties.

Pet Adoption Counselor

We know adopting a new pet is exciting and want to make sure adopters find the perfect pet for their lifestyle!  Adoption Counselors are key to helping us introduce the public to the adoptable animals at our shelter. If you like working with people while also being in contact with animals, this position may be good for you!  Counselors walk adopters through our adoption process and share information about responsible pet ownership.

Some questions our adoption counselors cover include: “are you looking for a puppy or an older pet,” “how many hours will you be away from home during the day,” “does your landlord have breed/weight restrictions?”

Training is provided.

Promo Team

A picture is worth a thousand words and an adoption is priceless! Volunteers are needed on our PROMO TEAM to capture pictures and video of our adorable animals. Photos and videos are used to help find pets a home/foster/rescue through our social media pages and media outlets.

You can assist by taking photos, assisting a photographer with animal handling or recording videos of our adoptable pets! Training is provided prior to your first shift to ensure understanding of needs and requirements.

Kitty Committee

If you’re a cat lover, the Kitty Committee might be the purr-fect fit for you!  We have adoptable cats residing at various Petco and Pet Supermarket stores. These volunteers are responsible for visiting our cats, straightening their cages, providing clean litter, checking food/water and giving them plenty of attention!

This is a flexible position since you can sign up to care for the cats anytime the store is open! Volunteers are able to see what days are covered through a shared calendar and send updates regarding a pet’s health, behavior changes or adoptions! Training is provided on-site at your preferred location.


How do I become a volunteer?
  1. Fill out the volunteer application
  2. Watch our online orientation and complete the background check paperwork.  This information and instructions will be sent to you via email once you complete the online volunteer application. Please be sure to read this email completely as it contains important information regarding your next step in volunteering. 
Are there any ongoing requirements for volunteers?

We ask that a volunteer commits to at least 10 hours per month of service. 

Additionally, we require all volunteers to adhere to the volunteer policies agreed upon via the online application. 

Volunteers must wear a volunteer ID badge (provided by Harris County Pets) or a green volunteer shirt (awarded after 10 hours of logged volunteer service.)

What if I need community service hours?

We allow an individual to work off court mandated community service hours here at Harris County Pets for certain offenses  Community service members have different requirements and guidelines than regular volunteers. Please contact VPHvolunteer@phs.hctx.net if you need to fulfill community service hours. 

Can my group set up a service day?

We have many opportunities for volunteering as a group!  If you are seeking a group volunteering opportunity, please contact Gabby Medina at vphvolunteer@phs.hctx.net

Can I volunteer if I have a criminal record?

Everyone is encouraged to apply. Results are discussed on a case by case basis.

Active Volunteers:

Our online volunteer system allows our volunteers to easily sign up for shifts and help keep track of their hours volunteered! 

  • Sign up for certain shifts online.  We use SignUp.com to sign up for volunteer shifts.  You will need to create an account with SignUp.com.   
  • Please record your hours each time you are volunteering.  You can log your hours in the volunteer hours binder located at the volunteer station.   

 Email vphvolunteer@phs.hctx.net with any questions. 

Upcoming Events

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The shelter will be CLOSED January 1st, New Year's Day.

612 Canino Rd. Houston, TX 77076

Note: The shelter will be closed April 10 and April 12th. (Good Friday and Easter Sunday.)
Phone Hours: (281) 999-3191
Monday – Friday:      9 am – 6 pm
Saturday & Sunday:  8:30 am – 4 pm
Adoption Hours:

1 pm - 5:30 pm Monday - Friday & 11 am - 3:30 pm Saturday - Sunday

Pet Counseling Hours:
1 pm - 4:00 pm Monday - Thursday & 11 am - 2 pm Saturday
No animal intake on Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday. Dates are subject to change based on special events/circumstances. Please call ahead to confirm.
Make an appointment to reduce wait time
Pet Clinic Hours:

12:00 - 4:30 pm Monday – Friday for scheduled appointments.   Walk-ins are accepted 1 - 4pm however,  wait times may be longer. 

Closed Saturday and Sunday