Animal Caretaker in a Shelter

Projects Abroad
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Coordinator | Bethany
Coordinator | Bethany
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.


Work with the only non-profit, non-governmental animal shelter in San Pedro
Gain experience handling, exercising, and training animals to prepare them for adoption
Observe veterinary procedures carried out by a qualified vet
Belize is a beautiful tropical country bordered by the clear, blue Caribbean Sea
There are plenty of ways to spend your free time here, whether you’re a beach lover, a culture buff, or an adventure seeker
Work at a shelter and help local staff care for stray animals and prepare them for adoption This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 16+

You’ll support the work of local staff at an animal shelter in San Pedro. Here are some of your main tasks:

  • Help with exercising, socialising, and training animals
  • Observe veterinary procedures carried out by a qualified vet
  • Bathe and feed the cats and dogs and help with shelter maintenance
  • Raise awareness about animal cruelty in schools and in the community
  • Organise fundraising events to raise money for the shelter

Your work with animals in Belize will focus on these activities:

Work with animals

Most of your time will be spent working directly with animals. You’ll help with positive reinforcement training and walking dogs to give them exercise. Even playing with the animals, which doesn’t seem like work at all, will help socialise them and prepare them for adoption.

You’ll also help with basic care like bathing, grooming, and feeding animals.

Observe veterinary procedures

When possible you can observe veterinary procedures. This includes operations like spaying and neutering, which help control the population of stray animals on Ambergris Caye. This is also a great way to see if a career in veterinary medicine is for you.

Contribute to shelter maintenance

The shelter is understaffed and so volunteers provide extra pairs of helping hands to keep it running smoothly. You’ll help with tasks like cleaning kennels and repairing fences. This work helps make sure the animals have a safe, comfortable place to stay before finding a new home.

Raise awareness of animal cruelty

By raising awareness of animal cruelty in schools and throughout the community, you’ll help local people to be more mindful of the way they treat animals. You’ll also talk to them about the importance of animal shelters, and the amazing role they can play in an animal’s life by considering adoption.

If you’re feeling creative, you can even make colourful posters, flyers, or leaflets to use during talks and workshops.

Organise fundraising events

Sharpen your project management skills by helping organise fundraising events. Some examples of events include Halloween pet costume competitions, adoption days, and barbecues. You can brainstorm event ideas, help with planning, and be there on the day to facilitate the event. This is an important part of your project that helps the shelter to continue the great work they do with animals.

Typical day

Your placement work will usually run from 8am to 5pm with a one hour lunch break. You’ll work from Monday to Friday with your weekends free.

You’ll start your day working on general animal care tasks like feeding and bathing animals. You can spend some time playing and interacting with them in between your work.

Then, your supervisor might lead you through a dog training session and you can take some of the dogs out for a scenic walk along the beach.

After lunch, you can observe surgery or work on general maintenance.

In the evenings, you can relax and destress from a busy day by singing karaoke or playing trivia with other volunteers or your host family.

Free-time activities

Belize is a beautiful tropical country bordered by the clear, blue Caribbean Sea. There are plenty of ways to spend your free time here, whether you’re a beach lover, a culture buff, or an adventure seeker.

During your free time, you can go snorkelling along the colourful Belize Barrier Reef. For a more relaxed atmosphere, you can spend time on one of the white-sand beaches, sipping freshly squeezed papaya juice in the warm sun.

There are also plenty of cultural activities, so you can get a glimpse into the history and heritage of the country. You can visit Mayan ruins or spend the day wandering through an art gallery or museum.

During your trip, you’ll be surrounded by volunteers from around the world. So you can choose to explore independently or with volunteers from our different projects in Belize. 



In order to join the program you need to be at least 16 years old on the program start date.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 08:00 - 17:00

What's Included

Services by Projects Abroad
  • Accommodation

  • Food (three meals a day)

  • Airport pick-up and drop-off

  • Full induction and orientation by an experienced staff member on arrival

  • Transport to and from your work placement

  • In-country support and 24-hour back-up from our team of full-time local staff

  • Emergency assistance from our international emergency response team

  • Project equipment and materials, including access to our database with thousands of resources

  • A supervisor/mentor at your work placement

  • Training and workshops from our experienced local staff

  • Regular social events and community activities with other volunteers and interns

  • Access to our local office with internet connection

  • Certification of project completion

  • A cultural awareness course

  • Membership to our volunteer social media groups, to share information and to get in touch

Airport Pickup at Philip S.W. Goldson International Airport

You will arrive in the country at Belize City Airport (BZE). You’ll then catch a short domestic flight to either San Pedro Airport (SPR), or to Placencia Airport (PLJ) if you’re doing a Conservation Project.

One of our friendly local staff members will meet you at your arrival airport. They’ll be easy to spot, as they’ll be wearing a Projects Abroad t-shirt or holding a Projects Abroad sign. They will then take you to your accommodation and make sure you’re settled in. We cover the costs of transport to and from your arrival airport, giving you one less thing to worry about on your first day.

San Pedro Airport is approximately two minutes from our office in San Pedro. Placencia Airport is about a 15-minute drive from our Conservation Project base in Placencia.


You'll stay with a host family in San Pedro. They will welcome you into their home, eager to share their customs and have you teach them about your own culture. We believe that this is the best way to immerse yourself in the culture of Belize and have a truly unique experience.

We will always try to let you live alongside at least one other Projects Abroad volunteer or intern at the same host family. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.

Guest Family
Food & Beverages
Your programme fee includes three meals a day.
Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Philip S.W. Goldson International Airport (BZE) in Belize City. We assist you to find cheap flights to Belize.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Belize provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in Belize you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Belize.

Dates & Fees


Details on arrival

This project runs all year round so you can join whenever it suits your schedule. You can volunteer for a minimum of one week. However, the shelter is understaffed, so the longer you stay, the more support you can give the animals and shelter staff.

This program is paused due to COVID-19

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1 - 50 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
1 week (min. stay)
2 weeks
3 weeks
4 weeks
8 weeks
16 weeks
50 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees
$1,272 /week

The organization charges its fees in GBP. The price table in USD is subject to currency fluctuation. Projects Abroad will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with Projects Abroad during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
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Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if Projects Abroad cancels your trip
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We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Projects Abroad.

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Animal Caretaker in a Shelter

Work at a shelter and help local staff care for stray animals and prepare them for adoption


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