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Old 23.11.2022, 18:22
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Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

Hi,
I'm new here.
Recently moved to Lucerne and I miss my dog who's back at home.
I'm looking for volunteering opportunities at animal shelters so that I'd get to work with animals as well as socialize and get to know people and places.
I couldn't find reliable information on google search and would appreciate any leads.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 23.11.2022, 18:31
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

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Hi,
I'm new here.
Recently moved to Lucerne and I miss my dog who's back at home.
I'm looking for volunteering opportunities at animal shelters so that I'd get to work with animals as well as socialize and get to know people and places.
I couldn't find reliable information on google search and would appreciate any leads.

Thanks in advance!
How hard did you google? Can't you call these places and ask? https://www.google.com/search?q=anim...t=gws-wiz-serp
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Old 23.11.2022, 18:38
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

The following thread might be a good reference / starting point:

https://www.englishforum.ch/pet-corn...unteering.html
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Old 23.11.2022, 20:33
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

As mentioned in the linked thread, volunteer opportunities with Swiss Tierheim or rescue groups are fewer and farther between these days, for many reasons:

1. Most of the work done by volunteers in other countries is done by trained professionals (paid) or Praktikant (largely unpaid, a requirement in training programs) in Switzerland.


2. There are fewer animals in Swiss shelters these days. (Lucky Switzerland!) Most of those are animals from countries outside of Switzerland, where the need is greater, brought in by Swiss Tierschutz groups - and they only bring in animals to their care capacity.

3. There are often more people wanting to volunteer in Switzerland than there is need much of the time, so there is a fair amount of competition for the remaining volunteer opportunities. You will need probably local language skills along with your home-country Tierschutz skills.

That said, it's not impossible to find a volunteer opportunity - you just have to be persistant, flexible, and comitted to the search.

As Chuff mentions, start contacting all the organizations within the distance you are willing to commute, ask if there is any way you can help. Many will have a section on their website listing volunteer needs. (Or the lack thereof.) But before you do so, put together your 'Tierschuzt CV', detailing your experience, skills, animal-related education, etc. Looking for a volunteer opportunity is akin to looking for a job - make a good impression with the first contact, show what you can bring to the table.

---

Even if they don't need help hands-on with the animals, Swiss Tierheim or Swiss Tierschutz organizations always need money. Are you good at fundraising? Do you have a network to tap into to help raise funds? Those skills are often gratefully accepted. Or, are do you have office skills that might be of use? Perhaps you could find a group that needs help there. When you contact a Tierschutz group, make a proposal - you just might find that you can offer a solution to a problem they had not yet thought about tackling.

---

Many expats end up volunteering with private rescue groups or even with groups outside of Switzerland.

A friend volunteers with a group in Greece, for instance. Much of this kind of volunteering means support/logistics/ acting as the Swiss point person/policy. My friend is in Greece right now, helping with a CCR campaign. She spends one or two months there at a time, two to three times a year - the rest of the time she coordinates rehoming in Switzerland. If you have connections to animal welfare groups outside of Switzerland, you might think about how you could help while placed here.

---
FYI, When you volunteer with a private group, be frank about what kind of financial contribution you are able to make. Again, everyone needs money, Tierschutz is expensive to do right. Most of us end up digging deep into our own pockets, as there is always one more heartbreaking case... So if you are working with a private group, think about this aspect, and set realistic limits.

---

Another form of 'Tierschutz' that is desperately needed is privately helping people - neighbors or friends or strangers met on EF - with their pet care needs. Could you offer petsitting? People are desperate for reliable pet care - helping out, while not 'traditional' Tierschutz, is very much Tierschutz nonetheless, as reliable pet care may just be the thing needed to help a pet to stay with his owners.

Are there elderly people in your neighborhood who might appreciate company while walking their dog, or who could use your help with dog walking when the weather is dangerous for them to be out? You could contact your local senior services agency, ask if there is a way to get the word out that you are available to help. (Some Gemeinden will have a newsletter, or even a senior services department. Some even have a sort of neighborhood help platform. OR, ask local vets if you can post an offer on their waiting room bulletin boards.)

Could you help drive neighbors to the vet, or to the pet store?

Or, if you are good a socialization/training, can you privately help a friend/neighbor who seems to be struggling with his or her pet? Again, this can make all the difference in helping an animal remain in his home, so that the pet doesn't end up a statistic.

---

One can be quite active in Tierschutz by thinking outside the box - there are ways one can help even if the traditional volunteer opportunities with established official Tierheim are not as plentiful.


Just a few random thoughts. Good on ya for wanting to help - and good luck in the search for opportunities!
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Old 24.11.2022, 12:18
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

I just did a quick search of 'tierschutz frewillig helfen Schweiz', and several results come up. Just a few, randomly chosen from only the first page of results, to get you started:


TBB, Basel, Dogwalking, more typical volunteer work with animals, support for adoption services, also outreach
https://www.tbb.ch/de/Helfen/Freiwilliger-Helfer-werden

Tierschutzbund in Basel: (Mainly cats)
https://www.tierschutzbund.ch/helfen...willige-helfer

Tierrettungsdienst, Zürich, (Drivers responding to emergencies such as strays and animals injured on the street, also help with placement)
https://www.tierrettungsdienst.ch/freiwilligenarbeit/

Tierheim Struebli, Zürich (Help around the kennels, cat socialization)
https://www.strubeli.ch/freiwilliges-helfen.html

(Interesting note: Their Freiwililge Helfer page has this note, something new that I have not seen before, "Aus rechtlichen und versicherungstechnischen Gründen ist es leider nicht möglich, mit unseren Hunden spazieren zu gehen.” Which might explain why it is difficult to fiind opportunities to volunteer walking or working with dogs.)

Pro Tier Stiftung für Tierschutz und Ethik, Zürich: (Focus on policy issues, campaigns)
https://www.protier.ch/ihre-hilfe/freiwilligenarbeit


Vier Pfoten, Swiss-wide (Focus on campaigns, projects, policy)
https://www.vier-pfoten.ch/helfen/freiwilligenarbeit


I would urge you to do a bit of due diligence on any organization that piques your interest, to make sure your goals and animal welfare ideas mesh with theirs.

---

While I did not see current volunteer opportunities here, Tierhiem Root in Luzern is in your area. You might nonetheless contact them, see if you could help in some way.

https://www.tierschutz-luzern.ch/de/aktuell

----

Another thing I found while perusing a few Tierheim, in line with my last post recommending offering help with private dog sitting:

Some Tierheim seem to be restricting their holiday care offering to only castrated dogs, as they keep the dogs in Rudelhaltung.

In Switzerland it is increasingly common that dog owners are discouraged from castrating dogs, thus the number of intact dogs is rising quickly, and is likely greater among recently acquired dogs.

That leaves an out-trade - as leaving a dog intact becomes the norm, owners may be finding it harder to find places at Tierheime/kennels for their uncastrated dogs, so rely on private dog sitting while they travel. Again, if missing doggy company is what is driving your interest, do have a think about offering dog care privately.

Last edited by meloncollie; 24.11.2022 at 16:03. Reason: Typos, should not post without my specs.
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Old 24.11.2022, 15:27
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

Another place to look might be Benevol, a platform for volunteer work:

https://www.benevol-jobs.ch

At present there are only 9 animal-related volunteer opportunities, and those involving dogs currently are visiting with your own trained therapy dog, so perhaps not for you. However if you have interest in working with farm animals, perhaps this in Zürich might be of interest, helping out at the stables at GZ Heuried:

https://www.benevol-jobs.ch/de/einsa...und-fuetterung

(Heads up for anyone else interested in animal-related volunteer work, this sounds like fun!)

Also if you like/have experience with horses, this in Affoltern am Albis (ZH), volunteer leaders/spotters to help children who are doing Hippotherapy (therapy with horses)

https://www.benevol-jobs.ch/de/einsa...tationszentrum

(Again, for anyone else interested, I'd encourage you to check this kind of opportunity out. Years ago I used to do something similar with RDA in Hong Kong, really a worthwhile activity!)

Last edited by meloncollie; 24.11.2022 at 16:04.
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Old 24.11.2022, 15:54
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

Back again... if you (or anyone interested) are not working away from home and have plenty of free time, and can make a commitment for 18 months to two years... have you thought about puppy rearing for the Blindenhundschule Alschwil (dogs being trained to become guide dogs)?

https://www.blindenhundeschule.ch/un...ung/patenhunde

This is an amazing program. Puppy rearers follow a program designed to start the potential guide out right, this work is incredibly important.

Similar programs through the Ostschweizerische Blindenführhundeschule in Goldach
https://o-b-s.ch/engagement/patenfamilie/
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Old 25.11.2022, 01:59
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Re: Loking for a Volunteering Opportunity at an Animal Shelther

If you are interested in helping cats, you might contact Netap (Network for Animal Protection), who are active in the Luzern area. They are looking for help in several areas, detailed here:

https://netap.ch/de/tierschutz-hilfe/freiwilligenarbeit

They are also looking for people to provide foster homes for their charges - often former street cats who need care and socialization to get them ready for rehoming:

https://netap.ch/de/tierschutz-hilfe...en-fuer-katzen


ETA:

Speaking of foster homes, Animal-Happyend, a well-known Swiss group that helps to rehome dogs mostly from countries where the need is far greater, is in search of foster families for the dogs they bring in.

https://www.animal-happyend.ch/die-h...tellen-gesucht

Last edited by meloncollie; 25.11.2022 at 03:51.
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