black and white cat white and brown beagle dog mix

Shelter Open Hours

Mon - Fri: 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Sat: At Adoption Event (See Below for more details)

Sun: Appointments Only

Adoption Events

Dogs and Puppies

Saturday, Apr. 5

♦ 11–4, at the adoption center at 4328 S Westnedge Ave Kalamazoo, MI 49008

Saturday, Apr. 12

♦ 11–4, at the adoption center at 4328 S Westnedge Ave Kalamazoo, MI 49008

Saturday, Apr. 19

♦ 11–4, at the adoption center at 4328 S Westnedge Ave Kalamazoo, MI 49008

Saturday, Apr. 26

♦ 11–4, at the adoption center at 4328 S Westnedge Ave Kalamazoo, MI 49008

Cats and Kittens

Saturday, Apr. 5

♦ 11–2, at PetSmart at 5200 West Main, Kalamazoo, MI

Saturday, Apr. 12

♦ 11–2, at PetSmart at 5200 West Main, Kalamazoo, MI

Saturday, Apr. 19

♦ 11–2, at PetSmart at 5200 West Main, Kalamazoo, MI

Saturday, Apr. 26

♦ 11–2, at PetSmart at 5200 West Main, Kalamazoo, MI

Volunteer Opportunities



Animal Rescue Project provides many volunteer opportunities working with dogs, cats, other volunteers, and the public. The following is a list of some of these opportunities. If you have any special skills or ideas that will help the organization, please talk to our volunteer coordinator.

All volunteers must attend a new volunteer orientation and complete the appropriate paperwork before volunteering with ARP. To get started, please fill out a volunteer application, and we'll contact you to schedule your orientation.

Community service

Our community service program helps volunteers meet requirements set for them through schools, scout troops, district court, and other organizations. To participate, community service volunteers must attend a new volunteer orientation and schedule their community service hours with the volunteer coordinator. You will be given credit for the service hours and tasks that you commit to and then successfully complete. Only the volunteer coordinator signs for community service hours. (See community service guidelines for more details.)

Volunteer opportunities at the shelter

You can volunteer at the shelter between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. every day except between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. The public is also at the shelter during open hours (see the Shelter Open Hours schedule at the right).

Dog walker

As a dog walker, you provide dogs with exercise and socialization, start basic training if necessary, and help maintain previous training. This helps the dogs and makes them more adoptable. You can start walking dogs immediately after orientation.

You can also sign out a dog with staff approval and take the dog to the park, the pet store, or another approved location. Be sure to let everyone you interact with know that your companion is up for adoption — you can take an ARP information sheet to share.

Cat volunteer

ARP cats and kittens have free-range rooms at the shelter. When you volunteer with our shelter cats, you play with cats and kittens, help socialize shy kittens and cats, and groom long-haired cats. After you've gotten to know the cats and kittens, you can introduce them to prospective adopters.

Open hours

During our open hours, volunteers answer the phone, greet visitors, show them adoptable animals, help them interact with the animals, answer questions, and get to know potential adopters to help them find a good match. You can sign up for a shift from two to four hours.

Office support

Volunteers run the ARP office. These are some tasks that you can help with:

  • Answer phones. We'd like to have volunteers available to answer phones from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day.
  • Print thank-you notes to donors.
  • Maintain adoption files.
  • Maintain medical records for cats and dogs.
  • Provide clerical assistance in all volunteer areas.
  • Recycle old recyclables.
  • Do data entry.

You can do these tasks from our shelter office or from home:

  • Retrieve ARP phone line messages.
  • Contact adopters to follow up on adoptions.
  • Contact foster families to ensure medical care is up to date.

Medical care

We administer much of the medical care at our shelter with the help of experienced staff and volunteers:

  • Give routine vaccinations and tests.
  • Groom dogs.

Shelter maintenance

We work to keep our shelter clean and in good repair. We often need volunteers for various projects:

  • Landscaping
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • General construction work
  • Cleaning

Foster care

Our volunteers provide short-term and long-term foster care. More about this opportunity is on our Foster page.

Adoption counselors

Adoption counselors volunteer at the shelter, at adoption events, or both. If you can commit to consistent participation at adoption events or shelter open hours, you can enter our adoption counselor program. Current adoption counselors will teach you the procedures for cat and dog adoptions.

Adoption events

We have dog and cat adoption events every Saturday at various locations. You can contribute to their success by volunteering in any of these ways:

Please let us know if you'd like to commit to one, two, or more Saturdays a month. If you can be there for only part of the event, you can still help with transport, setting up, and tearing down afterwards.

Pet transport

In addition to transporting dogs and cats to and from adoption events, volunteers transport them to and from vet appointments. Often one volunteer drives them to the vet for an overnight stay before spay or neuter surgery, and another volunteer picks them up the next day.

Fundraising and community outreach

Our fundraising committee develops and organizes fundraising events to raise valuable funds to support our mission. We need volunteers at all levels of fundraising, from event staffing to leadership.

Event planning

  • Set up dates and times for events.
  • Develop a plan for transport of all supplies for the event.
  • Assist with marketing and publicity.
  • Work with volunteer services to staff the event.
  • Develop a site plan.
  • Contact city officials to obtain proper permits.
  • Supervise at events to ensure proper management.

Other community outreach

You can contribute in any of these areas:

  • Publicity events
  • Presentations to community organizations
  • Community outreach for sponsorship program
  • Sales and maintenance of display materials
  • Donation canister program

Online publicity

If you're good at writing or taking photos of animals, we could use more help in these areas:


The next step

Are you ready to get started? Please fill out our volunteer application, and you'll be hearing from us soon. If you have any questions, please contact us.

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