What We Look For in a Volunteer

We always welcome new dog-loving volunteers who:


Embody our core values of being positive, welcoming, supportive and responsive.


Are able to commit to a minimum of 4 volunteer hours on a bi-monthly basis.


Abide by all organization procedures and protocols.


Are passionate about our mission and helping dogs in need.


Volunteer Roles


Adoption Event Support
A great way to get your feet wet in the world of rescue and help our adoptable dogs find home! Come help us at our adoption events where you will talk with the public, support our Adoption Counselors, and help keep the pups on our mobile adoption van clean and happy. Successful event volunteers will have the opportunity to take on additional responsibilities and become an Adoption Counselor or move on to a leadership team. 

Administrative Help
Especially for volunteers located in or near Long Island City or Astoria, we need administrative help preparing for adoption events, packing supplies for foster homes, and organizing our storage unit. 

Remote Opportunities
Join our Marketing or Development team and help us with fundraising initiatives, content creation, maintaining our mailing lists, designing newsletters and marketing material, and more.

Dog Transportation
Our dogs often need help getting to events, veterinary appointments, and new foster homes. We have a group of volunteers who help us with driving, walking, or taking these dogs on public transportation. Transport volunteers with their own vehicles also help pick up dogs that are arriving directly from incoming transports from our partner shelter in Kentucky.



Sign up for a general info session to learn about our community, culture, and volunteer program. No commitment required! At the end of the session, you’ll have the opportunity to complete our volunteer application if you would like to move forward with the process. If there are currently no available spots in our sessions, please check back regularly as more will be added soon!


Already a Volunteer?

If you are already a volunteer and would like to get more involved with Muddy Paws, please reach out for more information on becoming a core team member.

Events & Volunteers Team
Help with volunteer onboarding and training, and event management.

Foster Team
Help with foster parent onboarding and training, provide support to fosters, and help check dogs in during transports.

Adoptions Team
Help oversee Adoption Counselors at events, offer support to adopters, and process applications.


Volunteer FAQs

+ How do I apply to volunteer?

If you are interested, please sign up here to attend one of our upcoming information sessions about volunteering with us. You will learn about who we are, what we do, and where we need your help the most! There is no commitment required to attend a session, and once you’ve had a chance to meet us in person and learn a bit about our program, you will have the opportunity to fill out our volunteer application.

+ Is there a minimum age for volunteering?

All volunteers must be at least 18 years old.

+ What are the benefits of volunteering with Muddy Paws Rescue?

When you volunteer with us, you become a member of the Muddy Paws pack - a wonderful community of people committed to helping rescue dogs find loving homes. As a volunteer, you will meet fun, enthusiastic people from all walks of life, you’ll make new friends and experience the fulfillment that comes from helping dogs in need, and most importantly, you'll have fun! Your volunteer efforts, no matter how big or small, will help to make a real difference in the lives of countless Muddy Paws Rescue dogs.

+ Is there a fee to volunteer?

There is a $25 registration fee for new event volunteers. This covers a Muddy Paws Rescue ID and t-shirt, both of which must be worn at every adoption event.

+ Do volunteers need to have previous volunteer experience or dog handling skills?

Having previous experience and dog handling skills are certainly a plus, but not required. In fact, most of our volunteer roles do not directly involve dog handling, so a general enthusiasm for rescue, willingness to learn, and excitement to talk with the public about our work are just as valuable!

+ Do you provide volunteer training?

Yes! Following your information session and application acceptance, we will invite you to complete a short online safety training and join us for “on the job” training at one of our adoption events.

+ What do volunteers do at adoption events?

Event volunteers perform a variety of roles including greeting members of the public, answering questions, keeping our mobile adoption van clean and presentable, and facilitating adoptions. All of these activities help our dogs to find loving homes! However, please note that since we are a foster-based group and do not have a physical shelter, the majority of our volunteer positions do not work directly with the dogs. If you are exclusively interested in working with dogs and helping us socialize, train, and prepare our pups for their forever homes, please consider fostering!

+ How do I find and sign up for volunteer opportunities?

Once accepted, volunteers are granted access to our online portal where you can quickly and easily view and sign up for available volunteer opportunities.

+ Can a group of my friends or colleagues volunteer together?

We are generally unable to accommodate group volunteering due to our staffing and training needs. You can absolutely feel free to apply with a friend or partner and sign up for the same shifts, but we are unfortunately unable to reserve spots for group volunteering purposes. Check out our Corporate Partnerships Deck for opportunities with your company.

+ Where are you located?

We are a foster-based rescue, which means that we do not have a physical shelter and all of our dogs stay in loving, temporary homes until they are adopted. Our weekend adoption events are generally held in lower Manhattan, either in Union Square, Madison Square or the Lower East Side. Our administrative headquarters is located in Astoria.

+ What should I wear to adoption events or dog walks?

For safety reasons, only closed-toe shoes are permitted. We recommend long pants in every season, appropriate hats for sun protection and thermal protection in winter, along with other cold weather gear when necessary. All volunteers must wear their MPR issued ID and T-shirt or other branded apparel to adoption events.

Have a question that you don’t see listed here? Contact us!


Are you an existing volunteer? Log in here.



Not sure if VOLUNTEERING is right for you? Consider other ways tO GET INVOLVED.