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Animal Services Academy

We are proud to offer an opportunity for community members to learn more about the resources we offer at Washington County Animal Services. This free program is open to anyone ages 16 or older in Washington County.

Welcome to the Animal Services Academy!

The dates of the next Animal Services Academy have not been announced yet. Please check back for future sessions.

Does it tug at your heartstrings when you see an online post about a lost or found pet? Are you curious about how our county’s animal shelter works? Do you want to be an advocate for pets in your neighborhood? Are you interested in the animal welfare trends in our region? Then the Animal Services Academy is for you!

The Animal Services Academy is an opportunity for anyone 16 years of age or older in Washington County to learn about the services and resources we offer the people and pets in our community.

This FREE training program aims to help community members understand how the Bonnie Hays Animal Shelter works. This two-day course will empower you to share animal-related resources and information with your friends, neighbors, and online networks. No onsite or animal handling opportunities will be available, although tours of the shelter will be available to all Academy participants in the weeks following the training.

Course Content

  • General Overview of Washington County Animal Services and the Bonnie Hays Animal Shelter
  • The Importance of Licensing Your Dog
  • A Guide to Lost & Found Pets
  • Field Services: Investigating Abuse, Neglect, and Code Enforcement
  • Animal Intake: What Happens to the Animals at the Shelter
  • Veterinary Medicine in Animal Shelters
  • Animal Enrichment in Animal Shelters
  • Community Resources
  • Disaster Preparedness: How to Prepare You and Your Pets
  • Careers in Animal Welfare

After completing the Academy, you will have the chance to apply to become an official  Volunteer Ambassador.

Contact [email protected] with questions.

What past Animal Services Academy participants have said about their experience:  

"Washington County Animal Services and the Bonnie Hays Animal Shelter are passionate about educating the community and answer every question. I feel much more knowledgeable and able to help the critters now."

"I was interested in learning about working with animals and volunteering somehow. The Animal Services Academy provided such depth of information across all aspects of the county's organization plus how it works with a large network of rescue orgs throughout the greater Portland area. Time well spent! I'd encourage others to check it out! The Careers in Animal Welfare was fascinating!"

"I learned so much during this Academy. I hope to use this knowledge to better serve animals and be a good resource to my community."