Twin Cities Volunteer Opportunities for You & Pup

Are you and doggo feeling a little overwhelmed by the puppin’ state of the world and not sure what to do about it? Us too. We’ve been hanging on the couch for the last several months (feels like a decade), living in our sweatpants, and wondering how long we can go without a good scrub behind the ears. But, enough’s enough! It’s time to put on pants and take action! Pup can stay nakey, we guess.  

Here are some Twin Cities volunteer opportunities for you and your floofer to give back this howliday season. All hands and paws on deck.

Animal Ambassadors | MSP Airport Foundation

If we made a list of all the heckin’ stressful things we humans have to do, travel would prob be close to the top. The MSP Airport Foundation understands this well, which is why they created the Animal Ambassadors program back in October 2015, bringing registered therapy dogs to petting stations throughout the MSP airport to reduce stress and enhance the overall travel experience. Cuz there’s nothing quite like some canine cuddles to make you instantly feel better. If you and/or your BFF are interested, you can find more info about eligibility requirements and apply here!

Note: In order to qualify, your pup must be Pet Partners or Alliance of Therapy Dogs certified. 

Companion Animal Blood Bank | Veterinary Medical Center, U of M

Yep, you read that right—our furry friends need blood banks just like us hoomans! According to the Veterinary Medical Center, “Critically ill veterinary patients with cancer, anemia, underlying clotting problems, or trauma (i.e., internal bleeding from a motor vehicle accident) often need blood or plasma.” Dog’ll need to meet the following eligibility requirements to qualify: 

  • Friendly and happy to meet people
  • Weigh over 50 pounds (without being overweight)
  • Current on vaccinations and preventives
  • Healthy and without a heart murmur
  • Between 1 year and 6 years old when entering the program
  • Never received a blood transfusion nor been pregnant

If this sounds like your cuddly canine and you’d like to be considered for this life-saving program, email umnblooddonor@gmail.com

Pets Assisting with Healing (PAWH) | Children’s Minnesota

I don’t know about you, but every time I look at my furbabe, my heart grows three sizes. If you’ve ever had this thought and wanted to share that feeling with others (because obvi your pup is the best, am I right?), PAWH may be for you! Brighten the days of Children’s Minnesota patients while you assist with development and rehabilitation (and fill their lives with some sweet slobber while you’re at it). While the program isn’t currently accepting applications due to COVID-19 restrictions, you can learn more about this furbulous future opportunity by visiting their website.

Note: In order to qualify, your pup must be Pet Partners certified

Pet Hospice Visits | Arden Hills + Roseville

Here’s the easiest question you may possibly ever answer: do you have a friendly dog that loves attention and to be petted? You’re approved! Presbyterian Homes and Services is currently looking for volunteers and their pets to visit hospice patients and bring some joy to their days. If you think about how many times your mutt has mended your heavy heart or cheered you up after a long day, then you know how much a sweet snuggle from them can help. COVID-19 protocols are in place to ensure distancing and safety for volunteers and patients. 

Pomeranian wearing glasses looking at computer
Cookie the Pom putting in his research. | @cookie.thepom

For even more chances to volunteer from the comfort and safety of your own home, see the remote volunteer opportunities below. We know that your pooch will be more than up for the task of providing moral support!

Got the inside scoop on other pup-friendly Twin Cities volunteer opportunities? Howl at us in the comments!

Featured photo: Camylla Battani

Sidewalk Dog’s mission is to help dog parents spend more time with their puppers by discovering and sharing activities they can do and places they can go—together! Sniff out our award-winning newsletter and Instagram, join our Dog-Friendly Twin Cities Facebook Group, and grab one of our Dog-Friendly Brewery Passes.

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