ElderDog is always looking for volunteers who are interested in working with elders and their animals as part of any of these ElderDog programs:

The work of ElderDog is only made possible by the work of dedicated volunteers who donate their valuable time and skills. ElderDog volunteers range widely in age, background, experience, time commitment, volunteering activity.

Whether a member of a community youth organization partnering with ElderDog or a community elder helping other elders, the one thing ElderDog volunteers have in common is a belief in the power and possibilities of dog-human companionship.

Some volunteering activities, where individuals interact with the public on behalf of ElderDog and / or represent ElderDog, require volunteers to become members of ElderDog Canada. Examples of such roles requiring membership include: any activity associated with working with a senior person, education and outreach, leadership and coordination, and counselling. Specifically, volunteers associated with the following programs are required to become members:

  • Dog Care Support for Seniors
  • ElderDog Leadership
  • Education and Outreach

Volunteers with these programs are required to wear approved ElderDog identification when representing ElderDog. An official ElderDog ID card will be issued to volunteers in these programs upon successful application.

Volunteers visiting seniors in their homes or other locations also are required to complete a police check for work with vulnerable persons. This is a typical requirement for volunteers working in organizations helping seniors or young people.

Foster Dog Care
Some Foster Dog Care volunteers are able to provide a short-term, temporary home for a dog whose human companion is temporarily hospitalized. In cases where a dog is left homeless because her or his human companion must relocate to a non-pet friendly residence or long term care facility, volunteers are able to provide a foster home for the dog. This may or may not lead to permanent adoption into the home. Other volunteers are able to provide permanent homes for ElderDog canines who have lost a human companion due to relocation, illness, or death. Still other volunteers are able to assist with the care of dogs who live in an ElderDog residential facility.

Time commitment: Varies with type of involvement.

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Professional Care
Professional Care volunteers provide basic services in their area of expertise. This includes services related to grooming, veterinary care and animal health, bereavement counselling, and so on.

Time commitment: Varies with availability and demand.

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Professional, Artistic, and Technical
Volunteers with particular professional or technical expertise assist ElderDog in a variety of ways including: legal and financial assistance, marketing, fundraising and project development, qualitative and quantitative research, website assistance and management, digital photography, artmaking in various media, biographical writing, story collection, librarian, social media and networking, landscape architecture and maintenance, architecture, construction and carpentry.

Time commitment: Varies with availability and needs.

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Leadership volunteers contribute directly to the coordination, administration, and growth of ElderDog Canada. Involvement ranges from assisting at events and fund raising activities to committee work to more sustained and substantial roles such as volunteer coordination and Pawd Leadership. With strong leadership at the local level, ElderDog Canada begins to accomplish its mission.

Time commitment: Varies depending on nature of involvement.

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Education and Outreach
Education and Outreach volunteers help to spread the word about the role of companion animals in seniors’ lives and about ElderDog Canada to individuals and organizations within their communities. They do this through telephone and e-mail correspondence and by presenting information seminars and orientation sessions. Some Education and Outreach volunteers serve as Education Liaisons with partnering education and research institutions and individuals. Education and Outreach volunteers are directly involved in facilitating processes associated with the day to day operations of ElderDog.

Time commitment: Typically three-four hours per week.

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Wool and Wood Working Program
Volunteer knitters, felters, and sewers make things such as coats, sweaters, blankets, and beds for dogs, car seat covers, toques for volunteer dog walkers. Wood workers make things such as leash racks, chopping blocks, dog carvings and sculptures, benches, and cremation urns or boxes. These creations are then donated and sold in our online shop, used directly as needed in ElderDog activities, or included in special ElderDog fundraising events. All proceeds from Wool and Wood Working projects are used to directly support ElderDog programs and activities (rather than for administrative costs).

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How to become involved: Contact us to let us know of your interest, what you are thinking of contributing, and whether you need assistance with patterns and materials. When you complete a project, simply let us know and we will arrange pick-up or delivery. Then we will photograph your creation and make it available for sale, put it to immediate use, or include it in a special fund raising event. We also welcome new project and fundraising ideas.

To find out more about volunteering opportunities with ElderDog, please complete and submit our Volunteer Application Form or contact us.