Volunteering with SMRAS


Welcome to the San Marcos Regional Animal Shelter volunteer program! Being a volunteer is extremely rewarding, educational, and fun. You will have a significant positive impact on the lives of homeless animals! Whether you walk a dog, cuddle a cat, give a bath, or simply feed a treat, volunteering with our animals will touch your heart and bring you back for more.

Volunteers Are Part of Our Shelter Family!

Our mission is to care for, protect, and find quality homes for abandoned and neglected animals, aid in the reduction of pet overpopulation, and provide community education for the mutual benefit of animals and people.

We rely on volunteers to help us in each aspect of our shelter's operations from helping owners find their lost pets to cleaning kennels to helping scared pets and finding them adopters!

Minimum Requirements

  • The minimum age to volunteer is 12 years old. All minors must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
  • Adult volunteers may choose to bring minors as young as 8 years of age for non-animal handling volunteering, e.g. making treats for our pets
  • Please review our safety and handling procedures online prior to volunteering
  • Attend an in person volunteer orientation prior to beginning service
  • Track impacts and sign up for opportunities via this portal
  • We appreciate volunteers who can commit to at least one day each month to support our shelter. Volunteers looking for one-time opportunities for groups may email foster@sanmarcostx.gov

Duties include cleaning, feeding, grooming and exercising the pets, administrative work, adoption counseling/interactions, special projects, and outreach events. We always need help greeting visitors, answering the phone, entering data, photographing the pets, assisting the veterinary team, and organizing special events. Special projects and events include various programs in the schools and civic organizations, annual events such as the San Marcos Mutt-Strutt, Pet Fest, PetSmart Adoptions and a variety of events for Texas State University, San Marcos CISD and organizations around our community.

Basic animal care involves cleaning kennels and exercising dogs. Cats and kittens need brushing and nail trimming. Dogs and puppies need bathing, brushing, nail trimming and enrichment. All animals need daily exercise. We have cat toys and scratching posts available for the cat playtime. And we have several courtyards to walk and play with the dogs.

You will receive training and support throughout your time as a volunteer. If you want to learn a new skill or elevate your knowledge, we LOVE that and are here to help!

How to get started:
  1. Click the 'Join' button up top
  2. Fill out our volunteer application.
  3. Once you finish and have reviewed our guidelines, just sign up for the next available orientation! Feel free to join a waitlist for an earlier one, as well. We often add more slots to a specific orientation a day or two beforehand! 
  4. Here are links to our in person orientations this month:

We can't wait to see you soon!
619 People | 786 Impacts | 2,226 Hours




you have to wait to get an email back from the animal shelter saying they've checked and verified your application.
I am having the same problem! I filled out an application but can't find an orientation to sign up for.
Hello! I'm trying to sign up for a volunteer orientation, but can't seem to find out where to do this. Can anyone help me out? Thanks so much!