Animal Care and Control
Volunteers must be at least 16 years old to volunteer with Fort Worth Animal Care & Control.
Volunteer with the Fort Worth Animal Shelter!
Want to make a difference? Join us!
There are so many ways to volunteer your time to help Fort Worth Animal Care and Control (FWACC). We could not save more than 90% of the pets who come through our doors annually without our incredible volunteer team. If you're passionate about helping people and pets, we have a "job" for you!
Volunteers are needed for almost everything we do, but our biggest volunteer needs are:
- Adoption Matchmaker- help families find their perfect match among the 300 or more pets waiting at our shelter.
- Dog Enrichment Program - provide enrichment (in the form of toys, treats, and more) to pets in our care. Enrichment is critically important to help pets stay mentally and physically stimulated while they are in the confinement of a shelter.
- Dog Walking- walk, socialize and train selected pets in our care that are most in need!
- Paw-parazzi - help photograph the pets in our care waiting for their homes. By having clear, distinguishing photos showcasing the animals personality, it helps increase their adoptability and connect them with their new family.
- Play Group Monitors - with over 300 dogs in our shelter on any given day, we rely on our play yard areas to help dogs get much needed exercise and enrichment in play groups. These volunteers help us monitor the yards and ensure the play groups are safe and fun for every dog involved.
- Greeters - help potential adopters find their way around the shelter and meet adoptable cats and dogs
- Off-Site Adoption Centers/Events - assist with adoption matchmaking, cleaning and greeting potential adopters at our two off-site adoption centers and off-site adoption events
- General assistance with cleaning, laundry, dishes, and more!
- Foster Volunteers - volunteering in our foster care program is an extremely rewarding opportunity for individuals and families. Our foster program allows pets that are too young for adoption, who are recovering from an illness or injury, or who are in need of other care to stay in private homes until they are ready to be adopted.
Looking for group activities?
We love having volunteer groups visit us! We are able to accommodate groups of at least 5 but no more than 8 volunteers, all of whom must be at least 18 years old. We call this our “Day of Service Program”. Opportunities are available most Mondays-Sundays, and must be scheduled at least three weeks in advance. Scheduling is made on a first come, first-served basis. Please contact our volunteer coordinator, Melanie Pena @ email@example.com be sure to include the preferred date, time, and names of volunteers in your email).
By choosing to volunteer, you will have the opportunity to strengthen our great city by connecting with families, neighbors, and communities through service. Your help is very much appreciated by staff and the shelter pets - help us make a difference in your community!
Assists with all aspects of the enrichment program at our shelter! The enrichment program is vital for helping animals in our care remain mentally and physically enriched while they wait for their new families. Enrichment volunteers are responsible for:
• Passing out approved toys and enrichment items to shelter animals
• Helping prep enrichment items for the next day
• Helping keep inventory of enrichment supplies
• Assist staff or behavior coordinator with dog training and/or play groups
Requirements: Ability to dedicate 1 hour every 1-2 weeks
Must attend volunteer orientation
Animal Fostering Program
Become a foster hero!
As the city of Fort Worth's only open admission shelter, we never turn away a pet in need. Foster caregivers help us save lives of pets recovering from illness or injury, orphaned kittens and puppies, and many other animals that may thrive better in a home environment than in the shelter. Most pets at FWACC that are available for adoption are also available for foster, and we welcome fosters who can take pets into their homes for any length of time. Foster parents help increase the adoptability of these shelter animals by providing care and a foster home during this time of transition from the shelter to an adopter’s home. As a foster parent, you are a volunteer and helping us save lives of shelter pets in need. Whether you are able to commit to just an afternoon or a longer opportunity, we have a verity of ways for you to get involved.
Foster parents are most in need for:
- Short term foster placement, such as an Out and About day trip or overnight sleepover. Short term foster decreases stress in our animals, gives them a much needed break from the shelter, and helps us gain valuable information about the pet to help match them with their future adopter. This is a great way to try out fostering because it is a short-term commitment that makes a HUGE difference in the life of a shelter pet! Find out more about this type of fostering below.
- Medium-large adult dogs who have been in the shelter for longer than 30 days! Some animals (through no fault of their own!) can be passed by in the shelter. These "hidden gems" often times just need to get out of the shelter and have someone advocating for them to find an adopter.
- Puppies/kittens or moms with newborns that are too young to be adopted
- Pets recovering from an illness or injury needing some extra TLC and medical care
How to foster:
- Fill out our foster form (link on the right).
- You will recieve a welcome email within 72 hours of submitting your application. Read through the email to find your foster manual for more information on setting up an appointment.
What does the shelter provide?
- WE provide all vaccinations, spay/neuter, microchip and pre-authorized vet care for your foster pet. Food, treats and other basic supplies (beds, crates, leash, etc.) will be supplied to you, depending on availability (these are donation based).
- YOU provide the basics – your home, exercise, space, socialization and love.
You can view our dashboard of pets currently available for foster by clicking here. Please note: this list is updated frequently, but some animals may have already found their forever or foster homes!
Please email FWACCfoster@fortworthtexas.gov if you have any questions.
Citizens Police Academy
In the spring of 1992, the Fort Worth Police Department Training Division graduated 43 citizens from the first citizen training academy. The curriculum and teaching methods were similar to the traditional police academy, but the students were not police candidates. The class members were a cross-section of the Fort Worth community; i.e., homemakers, professional business persons, retirees and neighborhood watch members.
The first Police Night School was held in England in 1977 by the Devon and Cromwall Constabulary and met with immediate success. Citizens were anxious to learn operations of their police force which heretofore were obscure and private. Shortly afterward, the Orlando, Florida Police Department conducted the first Citizens Police Academy in the United States. The Orlando Citizens Police Academy was patterned after the English Police Night School. Since that time, other law enforcement agencies throughout the United States have developed and conducted various versions of the Citizen Police Academy.
Graduates of the Fort Worth Police Department Citizens Police Academy will not be commissioned law enforcement officers nor vigilantes. They will be more familiar with the operations of the Fort Worth Police Department and will gain a deeper understanding of the problems and policies facing Fort Worth Police Officers.
The training program consists of classroom and "hands on" instruction to provide the public with a working knowledge of the Fort Worth Police Department. Participants will meet for three hours once each week during the 8 to 12 week course. Instruction will be comprehensive, and each week a different area(s) of the police department will be covered, with each session facilitated by the officers and supervisors who work in that particular unit. Topics covered will include the officer use of firearms and deadly force options, criminal investigative skills, crime scene search, communications, narcotics, area gangs, specialized units, tactical operations and community involvement.
It is the goal of the Fort Worth Police Department that after you complete this program, you will have enough information to dispel any suspicions and misconceptions about the law enforcement role in our criminal justice system. We hope you will develop an appreciation for the Fort Worth Police Department as our community continues to grow and that you will educate others on what you have learned when the opportunity arises. After completion you will have the opportunity to engage in volunteer opportunities with FWPD as a Citizens Police Academy Alumni.
No matter your level of expertise, whether you're interested in helping out for a day or wanting a more long-term commitment, the Forestry Section has a volunteer opportunity for you.
Volunteer workdays at the Tree Farm projects can vary by season, but often include transplanting trees into containers; planting in the tree fields; weeding; staking and trying trees; and organizing the tree inventory. Bring your family, friends, co-workers and fellow tree enthusiasts. Rain or shine, we'll be here with something to do for every physical activity level.
Keep Fort Worth Beautiful
Keep Fort Worth Beautiful (KFWB) is an award-winning affiliate of Keep America Beautiful and Keep Texas Beautiful that has served our community for more than 40 years. Our mission is to educate and engage Fort Worth residents and businesses to take responsibility for improving their community environment.
KFWB has three goals:
- End Littering
- Improve Recycling
- Beautify Communities
We encourage all residents, businesses and visitors to become a volunteer to help prevent litter and make a difference in our community!
Nature Center & Refuge
Whether you enjoy being outdoors, learning more about the native plants and wildlife, sharing your love of nature with visitors of all ages, or caring for non-releasable education animals, we would love to find a way for you to make your mark at the Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge.