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How to Format an Animal Shelter Volunteer Resume

You can use one of three formats to write an animal shelter resume – the chronological, hybrid and functional resume. Usually, we recommend the chronological resume if you have over 10 years of steady volunteer experience; use a hybrid format if you have between three to nine years of experience, or a functional resume if you have less than two years of experience, recently changed careers, or are returning to work after an extended leave.

As a volunteer, however, you have some freedom in formatting your resume. Take Candidate A, for instance. This candidate is a recent graduate with over seven years of part-time volunteer experience; they use a work history-based format.

As you see in Candidate B, you can also use a functional resume to describe your accomplishments and skills based on regular shelter tasks such as pet care and safe transportation. This type of resume lets you create multiple skills sections to demonstrate additional skills such as veterinarian knowledge, successful foster stories or multilingual skills that help you coordinate adoptions among diverse families.

Hybrid Resume

Candidate A

  • 7 years of experience
  • 2 years at this job
  • HS High School Diploma

Work History
Animal Shelter Volunteer, Roar Cat Cafe
May 2022 – current, Oakland, CA

  • Load crated animals on a company van for transport.
  • Drive animals in a van to and from the Spay/Neuter Center and veterinarian.
  • Assist with crate cleanup, laundry and dishes when needed.

Functional Resume

Candidate B

  • 7 years of experience
  • 2 years at this job
  • HS High School Diploma

Professional Skills

Animal Transportation

  • Load and unload rescue pets for transport.
  • Drive pets to and from the spay/neuter center, veterinarian and foster homes.
  • Provide companionship and enrichment to stressed pets during and after transport.

Pet Care

  • Take three to five dogs on daily walks to maintain health.
  • Transport pets and supplies to foster homes to help socialize recent rescues.
  • Help clean animal sleeping areas, playpens, laundry and dishes.

Animal Shelter Volunteer Resume FAQ.

How do you describe volunteer animal shelters on a resume?

Describe your hands-on knowledge or experience working with animals and shelters.

  • Maintaining shelter animals’ sleeping, feeding and grooming areas.
  • Overseeing pet meet-and-greet sessions with potential adopters.
  • Delivering pets to foster or permanent homes as needed.
  • Number of pets you help support.
  • Types of pets you help support.

What skills do you need to be an animal shelter volunteer?

A compelling animal shelter should hold the following intersocial and technical skills to help support both adoptive pets and colleagues.

Technical skills:

  • Cleanliness
  • Measure food and water
  • Physical stamina
  • Driving license

Soft skills:

  • Affection for animals
  • Attention to animal body language
  • Customer service
  • Time management