Explore 3 flexible part-time pet care jobs with unlimited potential
Part-time pet care jobs are a great way to earn extra money while doing something you love. What’s more, these roles help you gain experience that can be a stepping stone to full-time jobs in animal welfare. So, if you’ve dreamed of getting your fur baby fix at work, read on to learn about 3 part-time pet care jobs that offer unlimited potential for tail-wagging fun.
#1 Papa Pal
Would you like to spend a few hours a week caring for cats and dogs? If the answer is yes, then becoming a Papa Pal and doing pet care visits could be right for you.
Papa Pals are part-time companion caregivers who help older adults, seniors and families (called Papa members) in their communities. When you become a Papa Pal, you can focus on pet care by helping Papa members look after their pets.
The typical pet care visit includes dog walking, play time, scooping animal poop, and emptying the litter box. Plus, you’ll make sure that biscuit bowls and water dishes are fresh and full. You can also walk dogs together with Papa members, offering encouragement along the way.
As a Papa Pal, you can help pets and pet owners in times of need. For example, when someone is recovering from surgery or an injury, you can help with dog walking.
Because Papa Pals support community members in a number of meaningful ways, you can also do other types of visits. For example, you can help with house tasks like changing batteries in smoke detectors, teaching basic tech, and offering car rides to doctor's appointments.
Papa Pals earn an hourly base rate, plus bonuses and incentives. Base rates vary by location, so be sure to check your location here. Many Papa Pals earn $20 an hour.
#2 Animal Care Specialist
Do you want hands-on animal care experience? If the answer is yes, then becoming an animal care specialist could be right for you.
Animal care specialists, also called animal care technicians, work in shelters and sanctuaries. In this job, you’ll focus on meal prep, administering medications, grooming, and cleaning kennels and cages. If you work with dogs, you might spend time exercising, walking and training pups. By contrast, if you work with cats, you could devote part of your day encouraging them to be more social.
In busy shelters, the job often includes helping with veterinary care, such as blood tests. Generally speaking, you will support vet techs with everyday tasks while providing reassuring care to pets.
The base pay for animal care specialists is between $13 and $15 an hour, and varies depending on your location and the type of work. For example, if a job involves a lot of heavy lifting and manual labor, you can probably expect higher base pay. And since it's hands-on, this part-time pet care job can be a springboard to a career as a veterinary assistant.
#3 Animal Relocation Driver
Do you want to combine your love of animals with a desire to be on-the-move? If the answer is yes, then becoming an animal relocation driver could be right for you.
It might surprise you to know that shelters frequently move animals between facilities, veterinary clinics, foster homes, and stores. Shelters also partner together to “exchange” or reallocate animals. For instance, when one shelter has too many dogs, it works with other shelters to reallocate them to other shelters with available room.
As an animal relocation driver, you might drive long distances, stay overnight in hotels, or even fly across the country. Not surprisingly, you could be on the road for weeks, especially if your shelter is responding to emergencies. Sometimes, this work is seasonal. For example, you might get extra hours during “kitten season” and then work less during the rest of the year. In addition to animal transport, you’ll do some administrative paperwork as you shuttle cats and dogs between facilities.
Driving experience and good communications skills are a must for this job. You’ll also need experience handling nervous animals. It goes without saying that most dogs and cats find transportation stressful. Lastly, keep in mind there’s considerable heavy lifting as you load and unload animals (less if you’re transporting cats).
The base pay for animal relocation drivers is between $18 and $20 an hour, and varies depending on your location as well as the type of vehicle you'll drive for the shelter.
Find a great part-time pet care job near you
There’s no better time to get your fur baby fix at work, and it's easy to begin with a part-time, flexible job. Without a doubt, there are plenty of fur-tastic opportunities to grow a career animal care.
Ready to get started? A great option is becoming a Papa Pal focusing on pet care. You'll gain experience while helping animals–and the humans who love them.