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Family & Pets

Best Volunteer Opportunities For Animal Lovers In Tampa Bay

March 7, 2014 9:00 AM

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Credit Thinkstock

Credit Thinkstock

Volunteering to help animals is a wonderful way to learn compassion for others. Many of the animal shelters in the Tampa Bay area are in desperate need of volunteers to help care for abandoned and injured animals. Horses, dogs, cats, primates and other types of animals that are unable to care for themselves have to rely on caring and compassionate volunteers to help make their days brighter.
Lorraine’s Horse Rescue
15254 Little Ranch Road
Spring Hill, FL 34610
(727) 856-1489
www.lthorserescue.org

Lorraine’s Horse Rescue takes in horses that have been abused, neglected, abandoned, sick, old and even horses that people just can’t afford to keep any longer. It needs volunteers to help care for the horses. No experience is needed as Lorraine will happily train anyone willing to come out and volunteer their time. Volunteers are needed for brushing and washing the horses, cleaning their hooves, combing out the horses’ tails and exercising with the horses. Children are welcome to volunteer their time as well. The only age requirement is that children are old enough to walk without assistance. Lorraine’s Horse Rescue also allows people to sponsor a horse on a monthly basis. All of the horses at the horse rescue are available for adoption. Volunteers are welcome to come out anytime between 7 a.m. and dusk.

Pet Pal Animal Shelter
405  22nd St. S.
St. Petersburg, FL 33712
(727) 328-7738
www.petpalanimalshelter.com

Pet Pal Animal Shelter rescues dogs and cats from animal shelters where they are about to be euthanized due to overcrowding, illness or other reasons. Almost all animals rescued by Pet Pal are adopted and given loving homes. Pet Pal Animal Shelter is a no-kill shelter. Volunteers are needed at the animal shelter to wash dogs, clean out cages, walk dogs and show the dogs and cats some love and affection. Volunteers must be at least 16 years of age to work at the shelter. However, children under 16 can help out with their car washes, dog washes, bake sales and other fundraising activities. Fundraising is an important part of caring for the animals as the funds can help provide items for the pets that are usually not donated, such as food and medicine.

SPCA Suncoast
7734 Congress St.
New Port Richey, FL 34653
(727) 849-1048
www.spcasuncoast.org

The SPCA Suncoast needs concerned, caring people to volunteer their time to help the animals at the shelter. The minimum age to volunteer is 16, and all volunteers are required to attend orientation. Volunteers are needed to help out in the front office, be a Kitty Kuddler, a dog walker or an adoption counselor. SPCA Suncoast also needs volunteers to sew quilts for animal beds.

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HorsePower For Kids, Inc.
8005 S. Racetrack Road
Tampa, FL 33635
(813) 855-8992
www.horsepowerforkids.com

HorsePower for Kids serves at-risk children, inner-city children and any other children that could benefit from interacting with horses. Volunteers of all shapes and sizes are a very important part of this volunteer group. Caring for horses, educating children and helping with special events are just a few of the ways in which volunteers can help. All volunteers need to be willing to commit to at least two hours a week, be reliable, be at least 16 years old and have a state issued ID or driver’s license.

Suncoast Primate Sanctuary
4600 Alternate Highway 19
Palm Harbor, FL 34683
(727) 943-5897
www.suncoastprimate.org

Suncoast Primate Sanctuary is a non-profit organization that is home to over 70 primates. Orangutans, chimpanzees, tropical birds, monkeys and more call the sanctuary their home. Many of the animals at the sanctuary are retirees from laboratories, personal pets whose owners can’t care for them anymore or retirees from the film industry. Suncoast Primate Sanctuary offers opportunities to volunteer in the maintenance of enclosures and building or repairing items for enrichment of the animals. Volunteers are also needed to feed the animals, clean the enclosures and other jobs as required of an animal caregiver. Greeting visitors, giving tours of the facility and helping out in the office are just a few more ways in which volunteers can help out.

Related: Best Volunteer Opportunities For Kids In Tampa Bay

Katherine Bostick is a freelance writer covering all things Tampa Bay. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.
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