Cat on Green

Volunteering with MHF

Our animals benefit tremendously from interacting with people and we would love for you to spend some time with the animals at the shelter. Before you sign up for volunteer orientation, please review our volunteer opportunities to ensure you are matched with a program that fits your interests. We welcome volunteers of all ages: young adults sixteen and above may volunteer without parents, and youth from 5 to 15 are welcome to volunteer accompanied by a fully trained adult. For more general information on community service hours, please scroll down to the box below.

COVID-19 UPDATE: In an effort to keep our staff safe and healthy, all volunteer opportunities have been changed to by appointment-only. MHF is accepting new volunteers on a limited basis at this time. To begin this process, please fill out the volunteer application below. Thank you for your understanding and stay safe! 

Please call 540-364-3272 or email the shelter at if you have any questions.

Click this link below to be taken to the Volunteer Application

Click this link below to be taken to the Foster Application

Interview & Tour

During the interview portion of the volunteer training you will go over a set of questions to allow the Volunteer Coordinator to get a better sense of who you are, what you expect from volunteering and where you would best fit into the program. Once the interview is completed, you will do a walking tour of the facility. 

We request a Volunteer Registration donation for all new volunteers.  Although it is not mandatory, all volunteer registration donations will help alleviate the physical costs and staffing demands of our fast-growing volunteer program.  Some physical costs associated with our program include supplies for interviews, increased staffing costs, equipment for off-site events and our new volunteer badges.  The suggested registration donation is $10.00 for persons 14 and over, and $5.00 for persons under 14 years.

Come dressed for the outdoors & expect to be at the shelter for 30-45 minutes.



Once you have completed volunteer training you will receive your volunteer badge and will be provided access to SignUp, our volunteer registration system. We have volunteer hours 6 days a week in many areas of the shelter. Giving one or two hours of your time at least once a month on the days you volunteer will be a great help. 

If more than 90 days have elapsed between your orientation and your first volunteer day, you might need to attend a refresher program.


Community Service Hours

Many people, particularly students, find that they need to perform community service hours. We are happy to assist, however, it is generally not possible to volunteer more than a couple hours on a given day. Please plan well ahead of any deadlines, and advise us of the need for cumulative hours as well as any written documentation.

Students ages 16 and over may work unsupervised on shelter projects; students under 16 must have adult supervision. Unless students have been through a volunteer orientation with a parent/guardian and been trained, they cannot work with the shelter animals, for safety reasons.