Spay/Neuter Clinic Helpers
The cornerstone of CCMD’s TNR program is our spay/neuter clinic, which is held monthly at BARCS, the Baltimore City animal shelter. We usually have 4-6 volunteer veterinarians at each clinic, and 20-25 regular volunteers to help run the clinic. These clinics are a bit like M*A*S*H units--they're fast-paced and hectic, but also a lot of fun. And they make a huge, huge difference in the lives of feral cats in the Baltimore area.
Volunteer jobs can either be hands-on or hands-off. There is generally some amount of blood, poop and pee involved, but some jobs have more than others! Volunteers with vet-tech-type skills are always needed, but those without any specialized experience can help too. BARCS does require that all volunteers have health insurance and be over the age of 18, however. You must also fill out a BARCS volunteer application (pdf) to participate.
The clinics generally take place on the third Sunday of each month (click here for a calendar of upcoming dates), but volunteers are needed on Saturday and Monday as well.
A sampling of clinic "jobs" are listed below:
- Helping to clear out the clinic space and get tables set up (Sat. early afternoon)
- Helping with intake -- writing cat descriptions and labeling traps (Sat. late afternoon)
- Giving cats food and water, cleaning traps and lining with newspaper (Sat. afternoon, Sun. afternoon, Mon. AM)
- Bleaching the surgical suite (Sat. afternoon)
- Being a "runner" -- taking cats back and forth from surgery (Sunday AM to late afternoon)
- Photographing each cat for ID purposes (Sunday AM to late afternoon)
- Cleaning the cats' ears and applying Frontline (while cats are anaesthetized) (Sunday AM to late afternoon)
- Watching cats as they wake up from anesthesia (Sunday AM to late afternoon)
- Giving vaccines (Sunday AM to late afternoon)
- Helping to break down the tables and clean up after the clinic (Mon. afternoon)
- Transporting cats to and from the clinic (Sat. afternoon and Mon. afternoon)
If you’re interested in volunteering specifically for clinics, please contact Holly, our clinic volunteer coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.