Animal Care Volunteers

Animal Care volunteers are responsible for feeding, cleaning, and general care of the wildlife admitted to Greenwood. Specific duties include food preparation, hand feeding baby wildlife, cleaning cages, maintaining a clean environment, refreshing food and water in outdoor enclosures, and other duties as specified by staff supervisors. We require that Animal Care volunteers commit to one regular 5-hour shift per week for a long-term period (minimum of 6 months).

Baby Squirrel Seasons

Late March-May & Late August–October

Note: Our Squirrel Nursery is open for two seperate season: in the spring and again in th fall. Volunteers will mainly work with the large number of baby and adult Fox Squirrels we receive each year. Greenwood is also licensed for Rock Squirrels, Pine Squirrels, and other assorted ground squirrels – these species are cared for by staff or experienced volunteers/interns. 

Baby Cottontail Rabbit Season

April-September

Note: Coming in 2023!
Our cottontail rabbit rehabilitation facility, the Bunny Hotel, is a nursery uniquely opened to staff, interns or experienced volunteers. Volunteers must have completed one full season (spring or fall) feeding our baby squirrels before being considered experienced enough to join the Bunny Hotel. 

Baby Bird Season

May-September

Note: Greenwood sees more than 100 species of birds every year, including songbirds and corvids. Volunteers will mainly help care for songbirds, as corvids are exclusively fed by our staff or experienced volunteers/interns. Working in our bird department includes feeding baby birds in our indoor nurseries as well as caring for our older birds awaiting release in our outdoor enclosures. 

Baby Raccoon Season

May-August

Note: Volunteers will bottle-feed babies, clean cages, and help with meal preparation and habitat enrichment in addition to laundry and other cleaning duties. This is a good opportunity for someone who is a hard-worker and doesn’t mind getting their hands dirty – as our raccoon patients can be very messy! It is REQUIRED to provide proof of up-to-date rabies vaccination (series of 3 pre-exposure shots) and a current titer if applicable (required every two years). Please send us an email at volunteers@greenwoodwildlife.org if you have any questions.

Waterfowl Season

May-August

Note: Greenwood receives hundreds of orphaned ducks and geese of all types, as well as injured adults. The Center has specialized care areas for waterfowl, where volunteers help clean cages and prepare meals. This is a fun job that includes hosing out cages and refilling pools daily while being in the cage or room with the patients. A willingness to get wet is a must!

Preferred Qualifications

  • Appreciation of all wild animals
  • A clear understanding of Greenwood’s mission
  • Willingness to get hands dirty
  • Patience and ability to communicate and work with others
  • 5-hour shift spent standing, walking, bending, twisting, and lifting
  • Reliable and punctual
  • Must be proficient in English to volunteer at the center

Animal care volunteers need to be reliable in their commitment. We are a working wildlife hospital and expect animal care volunteers to show up for their shift as scheduled. Your presence is crucial in making sure the patients get the proper care. If your schedule is unpredictable or if you have situations in your life at the present moment that may cause you to be frequently absent, please consider volunteering in a different capacity and check out our M.I.C.E. team volunteer opportunity. 

Requirements

Volunteering in our Animal Care department can be very demanding mentally and physically. It is primordial that all volunteers possess a good memory, attention to details, as well as the ability learn quickly and retain a lot of information. Most assignments also require the ability to perform basic math calculation and, at the exception of the Waterfowl and Outside Birds departments, to have very good hand dexterity/precision. If you have any work restriction(s) that Greenwood should know about, please mention it in your volunteer application form as well as by email to volunteers@greenwoodwildlife.org. We are also always happy to answer any questions you might have. 

  • Applicants must be 18+
  • Commit to one regular 5-hour shift per week (7am-12pm, 12pm-5pm, 5pm-11pm)
  • Long-term commitment – 6 months minimum
  • A reliable mode of transportation; there is no public service near the center
  • Provide proof of up-to-date tetanus vaccination (COVID vaccination strongly recommended)
  • Up-to-date pre-exposure rabies vaccination is required to work with rabies vector species only
  • A donation of $35 will be requested to help fund the volunteer program

How to Apply

Thank you so much for your interest in our volunteer program!

To join our Animal Care volunteer program, fill out this online application. Please allow at least a week to receive your invitation to our volunteer orientation class. We appreciate your interest in Greenwood Wildlife!

Questions? Please contact our Volunteer Manager!