Dog and Cat Rescue

South Africa

Support a Dog and Cat Rescue project in the beautiful coastal winelands outside of Cape Town and help the local team give dogs and cats much needed care and attention.

You will support the project by working hands on with animals on site, walking dogs and caring for cats and other small animals. Volunteers are able to support local vets in caring for injured or unwell animals and will help nurse them back to full health.

Spend you free time exploring Cape Town, the surrounding winelands and the beautiful Garden Route.

Volunteers are needed to provide an essential extra pair of hands.

Apply

Key Info

key info
  • Location: Cape Town
  • Start dates: 1st and 15th of each month
  • Duration: 2 - 12 weeks
  • Age requirement: 18 +
  • Availability: Spaces available
  • Cost: From £895 / €1045 / $1145 - see fees table below

Project Information

Volunteer role: What will I be doing?

The animal centre in South Africa is nestled between vibrant Cape Town and beautiful winelands that surround the city. The centre gives a home to mistreated and disowned cats and dogs and relies heavily on volunteers for support.

The centre feeds and cares for stray and unwanted animals as well as paying veterinary costs for the animals in their care. It tries to re-home the animals wherever possible. The facility operates at a maximum capacity of 130 dogs and 50 cats and also runs mobile clinics.

Each day at the centre will differ but volunteers’ tasks include:

  • Preparing food and feeding all animals
  • Hand feeding kittens and puppies
  • Cleaning kennels
  • Ensuring all animals have received medication
  • Exercising dogs
  • Observing and monitoring dogs and cats to check for illness
  • Helping at the clinics – dipping against fleas and ticks, deworming, inoculating, mange injections, sterilisation
  • Manual work (building enclosures and general maintenance)

One of the most import roles for volunteers is spending time with all of the cats and dogs at the sanctuary. Volunteers sit and spend time with the animals so they receive much needed care and attention and get comfortable with human interaction.

A major source of funding comes from a charity shop the sanctuary runs in the local town. Volunteers may also be asked to help sort donations and assist in the shop.

In your first few days you will have a tour of Cape Town and the local area, you will also receive a full induction of your volunteer role.

Working days and hours

Volunteers work 4 days per week Monday – Thursday, from around 7am – 2pm. On your days off there are a variety of free time activities for you to get involved in.

Other volunteers

There are usually 1 - 4 volunteers with a maximum of 4.

Volunteer Reviews

Read about volunteer experiences and challenges in our South Africa Dog and Cat Rescue reviews.

Why are volunteers needed?

The kennels are funded by charity donations, the majority of which comes from individual givers and their local charity shop. Whilst they aim to employ enough local staff to care for the dogs and cats, they are often overstretched and in need of additional help. Volunteers support the local team by providing an extra pair of hands and giving the animals much needed care and attention.

“Our volunteers are genuine animal lovers and are passionate about the welfare of cats & dogs. Some of the animals have been starved of human interaction and the care and love the volunteers provide makes a huge difference”

Kim, project manager

Location, free time and accommodation

South Africa

South Africa is situated at the southern tip of Africa and ranges from desert to sub-tropical. With dramatic landscapes, amazing wildlife and a rich and diverse culture and interesting history, South Africa has something for everyone. Popular activities in South Africa include:

  • Spotting the Big 5 (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo) on safari
  • Travelling the Garden Route
  • Visiting Cape Town and sampling some of the local wines

To find out more, see the Lonely Planet South Africa.

Local area and free time

The project is based in the town of Gordon’s Bay, which is next to Strand (where volunteers stay). Strand is situated between the Cape winelands and one of the Western Cape’s longest stretches of beach. It combines landscapes of imposing mountains and views of the Indian Ocean, so it’s a beautiful place to be!

The town of Strand has beautiful long beaches and a promenade where volunteers often sit on the beachfront with an ice cream watching the world go by. The beach is well known for surfing too and many volunteers will spend their afternoons sunbathing or having a surfing lesson.

You can use your long weekends to explore the Western Cape. Being so close to Cape Town means that you can take advantage of the sights and activities it has to offer such as Table Mountain, Robben Island, wine tasting and whale watching. The historic town of Stellenbosch is only 25 minutes away and has an array of cafes, pubs and wildlife attractions. Transport and tours are best booked locally once you are at the project.

Accommodation

Volunteer apartments are fully furnished and have all modern conveniences. Bedrooms are shared with 1-2 other volunteers. Bathrooms are shared between volunteers.

Read volunteer reviews from the Dog and Cat Rescue project

Janna

“My whole stay in South Africa was absolutely amazing and I will try to integrate all I have learned going forward, and I can’t wait to come back.”

Eliana

“I really enjoyed the time in Africa and I will return home with great memories.”

Michael

“South Africa is a beautiful country with a very interesting history and huge diversity of traditions, languages, people and wildlife… It’s definitely a rainbow nation.”

What's Included?

Before you go:

  • Carefully selected and vetted volunteer project
  • Support from our friendly and highly experienced Pod UK team
  • Single point of contact - Iona is your dedicated Pod Volunteer Specialist
  • In-depth volunteering and planning your trip guides
  • Travel information - visa, health and safety advice
  • Access to specialist travel insurance at exclusive rates
  • Recommended travel agency for flights and tours
  • Access to special deals and resources
  • Fundraising guide and support
  • Financial protection for monies paid to Pod

On your placement:

  • Animal care volunteering placement
  • Airport pick up (Cape Town) and return transfers
  • Accommodation - a shared room
  • Daily travel to the project site
  • Induction
  • Tour of Cape Town
  • Support from local team
  • Support from Pod UK office by phone and email
  • 24/7 emergency back up
  • Incident Management and Emergency Response Plans

On your return:

  • Contact from your Pod Volunteer Specialist
  • Feedback scheme
  • Volunteering certificate (on request)
  • References (on request)
  • Member of the Pod community

Not included: Flights, travel insurance, visa (if required), food. Budgeting guidance is provided in our Guide which we will email you when you apply.

Price table
2 weeks £895 GB Pounds
Each additional 2 weeks £250 GB Pounds
Apply

Fees in currencies other than GBP are indicative only and volunteers are invoiced in GBP. For current exchange rates please see www.xe.com

180

rescued animals cared for

"It was an amazing experience that will stay with me forever! Pod Volunteer provided the ideal amount of support and guidance"Satvinder

Iona

Pod UK Specialist

Apply and you'll hear from Iona soon!

We look forward to receiving your application! There is no commitment by applying and we will send more information.

Apply

VOLUNTEER REVIEWS

  • South Africa Dog and Cat Rescue volunteer – Elaina

    “I really enjoyed the time in Africa and I will return home with great memories.”

    Read more volunteer reviews
  • South Africa Dog and Cat Rescue volunteer – Janna

    “My whole stay in South Africa was absolutely amazing and I will try to integrate all I have learned going forward, and I can’t wait to come back.”

    Read more volunteer reviews
  • South Africa Dog and Cat Rescue volunteer – Michael

    “South Africa is a beautiful country with a very interesting history and huge diversity of traditions, languages, people and wildlife… It’s definitely a rainbow nation.”

    Read more volunteer reviews

SIMILAR PROJECTS

We have other projects you may be interested in

Animal Rescue

Animal Rescue

India FIND OUT MORE
Dog and Cat Rescue

Dog and Cat Rescue

Thailand FIND OUT MORE

COMBINE PROJECTS

You can also combine projects to make the volunteering trip of a lifetime!

Monkey Rescue

Monkey Rescue

South Africa FIND OUT MORE
Children’s Day Care

Children’s Day Care

South Africa FIND OUT MORE

AWARDS AND ACCREDITATIONS

  • Tourism Concern
  • Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust
  • Right Tourism
  • DOFE
  • theguardian
  • the independent
  • Sunday Times
  • Year Out Group
  • Best Volunteering Organisation
  • Wall Street Journal