Interested in Volunteering at TAPS?

Tazewell Animal Protective Society (TAPS) is a non-profit animal shelter working to save homeless dogs and cats in need.  A large part of our work to save animals is accomplished through a team of dedicated volunteers working hand in hand with staff to save lives.   We are always in need of new volunteers to help us achieve our mission.  We utilize volunteers with a wide skillset to accomplish our goals.  Below are some areas where we are always in need of volunteers:


Each week, TAPS partners with Tazewell Bingo Center to supply volunteers for Wednesday night bingo.  In return, TAPS receives a portion of the evening’s proceeds to support our shelter dogs and cats.  This is an important fundraiser and we can’t do it without volunteers.  It is not necessary to undergo volunteer orientation to volunteer for Bingo.  

Bingo volunteers should be available from 4:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday evenings.  Whether you can volunteer every Wednesday, every other week or one Wednesday a month, we need your help.  Volunteers help to fill out menus, pass out Bingo papers, run a cash register, run side pull tab games which is handling money, counting cards to refill games, and going out into the crowd and verifying Bingos.

Vet Runs

Over 90% of the dogs and cats that we take in at TAPS still need to undergo spay/neuter surgery.  By law, they cannot be adopted out until they are spayed/neutered.  Vet transporters are needed several mornings a week for approximately 2 hours beginning at 7:00 a.m.  Transporters are also needed several afternoons a week in the 3:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. range for approximately 2 hours.

Vet run volunteers should have a valid drivers license, be available for at least one morning or afternoon shift a week, and be able to communicate basic messages from the vet’s office to the shelter staff.  Vet run volunteers should be able to minimally handle dogs and cats as well.  

Off-Site Events Volunteers

TAPS often takes dogs to locations within the community as an opportunity to socialize the animals and bring visibility to adoptable pets. Volunteers can be assigned a variety of tasks during off-site events from helping to set up the events to cleaning up from the events after they are over.  We need volunteers to work at our informational tables, collect donations, or help handle a dog.    

Dog handlers are asked to keep dogs a minimum of 6 feet away from each other, monitor their body language for comfort of situation, and interact with the public to answer questions about the dog you are handling.  At off-site events, our volunteers are the face of TAPS, and are serving as a representative of our organization.  

Dog Walkers and Cat Socializers

TAPS utilizes volunteers to help walk dogs to give them additional time outside of their kennels.  Dogs are color coded to easily notify volunteers what level of experience they need to walk a dog.  While we allow volunteers to walk dogs at any time of day, we particularly need dog walkers at 7:00 a.m. to help give dogs a morning walk and between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. for their last walk of the day.  Kennels are cleaned between 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. every day and floors are wet with disinfectant so dog walking during this time is discouraged. 

Our cats love visitors.  Many of our cats are free roaming in open cat rooms and they love for our volunteers to sit and play with them.  They loved to be brushed and have interactive play with string toys.  For our cats in kennels, they enjoy volunteers to take them into an acquaintance room to pet them and give them an opportunity to stretch their legs.  Acquaintance room availability may be limited in early morning hours and late afternoon/early evening hours.  

Ready to volunteer?    

The first step in the process is to submit a volunteer application and from there, you’ll be asked to complete some paperwork and successfully complete our online orientation training in order to become better acquainted with our shelter, our policies, and the work we do.  Beginning May 1, 2021, TAPS is transitioning to an online volunteer management software called Better Impact. Better Impact will allow us to better coordinate and communicate with our volunteers.  

If you are interested in volunteering, please click here to fill out an application and to learn about other volunteer opportunities.  Please note, it may take up to 1 week to process the volunteer application.  

We thank you all for your support! Together we are changing lives!

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