VOLUNTEERING WITH VILLALOBOS
Thank you so much for inquiring about our volunteer programs. Where else can you go and have a great time with some great dogs but…..do it in the city of New Orleans! Before you make plans there are some things to consider. Because our facility and organization is connected to a TV show on Animal Planet, the public attention we receive can be overwhelming. For this reason we are limited to what the volunteers can do. This is not only for privacy reasons of our staff and cast but also safety reasons. All of our programs now have to be “monitored” by one of our regular VRC staff so we have to keep things somewhat structured. At this time we only have one volunteer program available. We get many requests for people coming into town on specific dates and want to volunteer on those specific dates also and unfortunately we don’t have the manpower to adhere to every personal request so we’ve set up The Nightwalkers program that does not require any scheduling or planning. You just show up.
This program caters to our special needs dogs. These are dogs that do not do well out in the main kennel environment so we’ve set up indoor housing for them. For this reason, they need to go out more frequently with their last walk of the night being from 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm…..no matter what the weather is! The walks can go for up to a mile and take you on various routes throughout the neighborhood. Okay…I have to admit….it does make you feel kinda cool as this big ole pack of dogs is walking down the street and people are honking and waving. This city loves its dogs! Because there are many distractions on this walk and it can get a little bit tiring, we don’t recommend small children for this. But depending on the weather, these walks are sometimes shortened to just around the rescue area.
We conduct these walks three different times of the day. You must show up 5 minutes before the scheduled walks so that you can fill out volunteer paperwork. Depending on how many people show up, determines the amount of time you will be walking dogs. But the entire process will not last more than an hour (at the most)
The times are as follows: 8:00 am, 2:30 pm and our final walk of the day at 7:00 pm.
Try to remember to wear good walking shoes and we do these walks; rain or shine (when it rains the walks are cut short and we stay under the Claiborne Bridge) The “rainy day” walks aren’t as fun but the dogs still need to get out.
We also cannot allow children under the age of 5 years to attend the walking program. There are just too many big dogs out at one time and it is just too much of a risk that a little one will get knocked to the ground by an overly zealous pooch. Also no carrying children in “baby packs” or strollers allowed on walks.
You DO NOT need an appointment to come and volunteer to walk dogs. You can fill out the necessary paperwork during a quick orientation when you arrive. Our lead dog walker Kyle, will be there to take charge and get you started!