Canine Task Training

Canine Butler Training

Canine Butler Training Requirements

  • Review the Task Safety & Health Guidelines, Task Instructions and Checklist!
  • Submit the quiz below. 
  • Your Volgistics Account has been updated and you will receive an email to let you know that you are ready to schedule your Shadow Session with a Mentor or Staff member when it is convenient for you! 
    • Please note that we recommend that you schedule your Shadow Training Session during the shift time that you plan on signing up for!
  • please contact the Director of Volunteers via email at volunteer@spcawake.org.
  • If you need additional resources, please see the library of videos below.  Watching the videos is not required. 

What does it mean to be a Canine Butler?

We have an awesome team of Canine butlers that not only clean our dog bedrooms and play yards and our puppy bedrooms and tubs. But,  they also provide enrichment and socialization to our dogs and pups!  Our dogs and puppies cannot wait to meet, cuddle and play with you!

Responsibilities include:

  • Take the dogs out for bathroom breaks.
  • Clean, tidy and deep clean their bedrooms, tubs, and play yards when needed. as needed.
  • Work on training using fear-free training methods and spend time with the dogs.

Our dogs not only inspire us in so many ways, but they bring us so much joy! It is the best part of this volunteer task!  Please click on the button below to review

Supplies & Where to Find Them:  Adult Dogs

  • Apron – Volunteer Area
  • Treats -Dog pods; refills near the sink in the dog area
  • Two 4-ft slip leads - Command hooks in each dog pod or in the Dog Area Supply Closet
  • Walkie Talkie – Dog Area Sink
  • Dog Bedroom Key- See an Animal Care Specialist
  • Water Buckets- under Dog Area Sink
  • Hard toys- Food Prep Room/ Dog Pod
  • Soft Toys- Laundry Room/Dog Pod
  • Linens- Red Cabinet/Behind the Scenes Hallway/Laundry Room
  • Enrichment Kongs and Treats- Freezer of the Food Prep Room (remove paper cups before giving to dogs)

Important Points to Remember for Dogs

  • Always check the dog bedroom door before entering the bedroom or play yard.  
  • In the event of an emergency, contact a staff member using the radio or find the staff member assigned to the Dog Area for your shift.
  • Purple Stars Dogs are Staff ONLY.  PINK STAR Dogs are Leads and Staff ONLY. 
  • The dogs that are mouthy or jumpy need your attention the most to work on manners. 
  • Dogs that know to sit, stay, or come and that are socialized are likely to get adopted a lot quicker. 

First Rotation

  • Check and refold the blankets in the crate (if there is one), cot (if there is one) and on the floor.  If blankets are soiled: replace with clean blankets.  
  • Wipe down windows and window sills. 
  • Sweep and the floor, behind the door, and under the cot and under the crate 
  • Throughout your shift, messes must be mopped & the floors should be dried (extra towels are in the red cabinets).
  • Morning and Evening Shifts ONLY.  Get the food bowl from the top of the red cabinet in your pod* and place it in the room. * The dog’s name is written on the bowl.
  • Rinse/Refill/Refresh water buckets.  
  • Spend time with the dogs as time allows.

The Morning Shift (7AM- 9AM) and The Evening Shift (6pm-8pm) Shift Rotations

  • PODS A, C & D (PODS WITH 4 BEDROOMS): Let each dog outside for 15 minutes.
  • POD B (POD WITH 5 BEDROOMS):  Let each dog outside for 12 minutes.  

The Afternoon Shift (12pm-2pm) 

  • ALL PODS: Let each dog outside for at least 30 minutes.

* Rotations can be longer than 30 minutes, if every dog gets outside during your shift.

FOR ALL SHIFT ROTATIONS

  • Scoop poop in the play yard between each dog
  • At the end of 15 minutes OR 30 minutes, re-leash the dog and bring it back inside.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands.
  • Repeat with remaining dogs in order by bedroom number (clockwise).Wash or sanitize your hands, then repeat with remaining dogs in order by bedroom number (clockwise).
  • Second Rotation

  • Return empty bowls to the top of the red cabinet in the POD. 
  • Remove large treats or toys that could be choking hazards. 
  • Clean any messes using the mop.
  • Spend time with the dogs.
  • *Repeat the rotation with the remaining dogs in order by bedroom number. See shift rotations above.

Wrapping Up Adult Dog Pods 

  • Return the dog to the bedroom.  *Never leave a dog outside when the shift is over.
  • Crating dogs.  *Unless specified by signs or staff instruction, there is no need to crate the dogs.
  • Afternoon Shift Only: Accel the play yards. *See staff for instructions.
  • Spray down the play yard with the hose. 
  • Make sure the bedroom doors are locked when you are finished.
  • Remove all used supplies from the room and place in the appropriate areas:
  • Used buckets and food bowls- food prep room sink
  • Used bedding, apron & toys- bins outside of laundry room
  • Return the key to an Animal Care Specialist

     Our wonderfully wiggly canines are so grateful that you came in to not only clean their rooms, but to spend time with them and gave them so much love and attention!

Important Points to Remember for Puppies

  • DO NOT step into an occupied puppy tub without booties over your shoes!  
  • When cleaning tubs and rooms, relocate puppies to an empty and clean visit room, tub, or crate. If the tub is vacant, puppies can stay there or in the puppy room; inform animal care. If using a crate, sanitize and dry it before placing the next batch of pups inside for cleaning.
  • Clean linens and toys (are not soiled) can be reused after cleaning the tub if the same puppies are returning to it.
  • DO NOT move puppies to tubs or rooms with other puppies or place them on the floor of the puppy area.
  • Always pick puppies up by supporting their bottom (place one hand under their bottoms and lift horizontally to avoid touching their surgery incisions). Post-surgery puppies should be handled minimally.

Supplies & Where to Find Them: Puppy Tasks

  • Gloves- puppy mop closet
  • Accel (rescue) 4oz spray bottle- puppy mop closet
  • Brooms & Scrub Brushes & Mop & Mop Bucket- puppy mop closet
  • Trash Bags and trash can- puppy mop closet
  • Clean Bowls, Toys & Tennis Balls- puppy prep closet
  • Newspaper- general puppy area
  • Towels & Blankets- general puppy area
  • Puppy Tub Cleaning Instructions
  • Wash/sanitize hands!
  • Put on a new pair of gloves and booties (if available).

Puppy Tub Cleaning Instructions

  • Wash/sanitize hands!
  • Put on a new pair of gloves and booties (if available).
  • Move the puppies to an empty and clean visit room, tub, or crate while you clean.
  • Remove any toys, blankets and towels that are not soiled, set aside off the floor
  • For unoccupied tubs: remove All items from the tub, place linens and soft toys in the laundry and set the dishes and plastic toys aside to take to the food prep room to be sanitized.
  • If toys, blankets or towels are soiled, shake off any poop or other solids into the trash can and then place in the laundry bins
  • Remove food and water bowls
  • Throw away soiled newspaper
  • Sweep the tub floor.
  • Use the scrub brush to remove stuck on messes and debris.
  • Mop the floor, walls, and ledges of the tub until heavily saturated and allow the solution to sit for 5-10 minutes.
  • For unoccupied tubs: Let the solution sit for 20 minutes.
  • Use the squeegee to remove excess foam or liquid from the tub.
  • Cover the entire floor of the tub with 2-3 layers of unfolded newspaper (laid flat)
  • Place blanket back into tub
  • Place a large water dish at the back corner of the tub and use water pitcher to fill bowl
  • For unoccupied tubs, place bowls upside down in the appropriate spots.
  • Place the smaller food bowls along the back wall of the tub
  • Put a variety of soft toys and plastic/rubber chew toys in the tub
  • Place the puppies back into the tub.

Visit Room Cleaning Instructions

  • Wash/sanitize hands!
  • Put on a new pair of gloves and place puppies in the crate located outside of the door.
  • Pick up any toys, blankets and towels that are not soiled, set aside off the floor.
  • If toys, blankets or towels are soiled, shake off any poop or other solids into the trash can and then place in the laundry bins and throw away soiled newspaper
  • Remove food and water bowls. 
  • Wipe down the counter and windows.
  •  Sweep (floor) and mop the floor, walls, and sides of the counter. Allow the solution to sit for 5-10 minutes.
  • For unoccupied rooms: Let the solution sit for 20 minutes.
  • Use the squeegee to remove excess foam or liquid and  use a towel to finish drying the floor
  • Place newspaper 2-3 pages thick in an approximately 3ft by 4ft area in the corner of the room opposite the door
  •  Place blankets under the built-in desk and add 5 toys to the floor of the room 
  • Place the food and water bowls on the floor next to the side of the desk..  Fill the water bowl up (using the pitcher) ½ inch from the top. *they must have water.
  • For unoccupied rooms: place food and water bowls upside down..
  •     Place the puppies back into the room.  Sanitize the crate before placing new pups in the crate.

Wrapping Up Puppies

  • Mop the floor in the main walkways of the puppy area.
  • Bring dirty linens to laundry room
  • Bring dirty hard toys and dishes to the Food Prep room.
  • Take trash to the shopping cart in Cleaning Supply Closet in the Behind the Scenes Area
  • Replace the trash bag in the can for the next person
  • Dump the mop bucket in the drain in the mop closet.
  • Rinse out the bucket and mophead. 

Canine Matchmaker Training

Canine Matchmaker Training Requirements

  • Review the instructions and complete the Maddie's University Training Certification Course! Note: you will need to upload the certification to the quiz when completed, so don't take the quiz before taking the course! 
  • Submit the quiz below. 
  • Your Volgistics Account has been updated and you will receive an email to let you know that you are ready to schedule your Shadow Session with a Mentor or Staff member when it is convenient for you! 
    • Please note that we recommend that you schedule your Shadow Training Session during the shift time that you plan on signing up for!
  • please contact the Director of Volunteers via email at volunteer@spcawake.org.
  • If you need additional resources, please see the library of videos below.  Watching the videos is not required. 

What does it mean to be a Canine Matchmaker?

As a Canine Matchmaker, you're bringing together eager visitors and lovable canines for cuddles, connections, and potential adoptions! You're not just a matchmaker; you're also gathering helpful information about the dogs & puppies in our care & taking some adorable pictures & videos. Sharing details and cute pictures with our Adoption & Animal Care Team will help the pets find their forever homes even quicker. You’ll also be helping our dogs stay active & happy by providing them with appropriate toys & treats. And while you're at it, you’ll tidy up to ensure that our pets are staying clean & healthy and that visitors are having a great experience.  

Responsibilities include:

  • Showcasing all of the dogs & puppies on the adoption floor
  • Sharing accurate and helpful information to potential adopters  
  • Providing a fun & welcoming experience for visitors
  • Ensuring the safety of the dogs & people by following protocols 
  • Providing the dogs with enrichment
  • Keeping the dog bedrooms & puppy tubs clean
  • Sharing any observed behavior information & pictures/videos with the staff 

Supplies & Where to Find Them

  • Apron – Volunteer Area
  • Treats -Dog pods; refills near the sink in the dog area
  • Two 4-ft slip leads - Command hooks in each dog pod or in the Dog Area Supply Closet
  • Walkie Talkie – Dog Area Sink
  • Dog Bedroom Key- See an Animal Care Specialist

Important Points to Remember

  • Visitors may not access the puppy room, dog bedrooms, visit rooms, or play yards without a matchmaker or staff.
  • Pink Star dogs are only permitted to be handled by Lead Volunteers and staff. Purple Star dogs are only permitted to be handled by staff.   
  • Always read information about the dogs whenever applicable- these notes can be found in the dog pods, behavior notebooks, Salesforce, and profiles.
  •  Interact with the dogs to get to know their personalities. 
  • If the puppies have just come back from spay/neuter surgery, there will be a sign posted that they should not be handled that day. Please avoid picking up these puppies unless absolutely necessary to clean them or their tub. Please do not throw these signs away.
  • Pay attention to visitors’ interactions with pets. If you witness or hear anything that makes you uncomfortable, discreetly tell an Adoption or Animal Care Specialist that you have information to share.
  • The Adoption Team is responsible for completing the adoption process and sending the dogs home with potential adopters. They are extensively trained on how to set up everyone involved for success & we ask that you trust their training.

Engaging and Interacting with Visitors

  •  Our core values guide everything that we do and how we treat our staff, volunteers, and visitors.  Visitors are potential adopters and they are making the important first step to adopting a homeless pet by coming to the SPCA.  Your interactions as a matchmaker shape their perception of the SPCA.
  • Greet everyone that comes through our doors.  
  • *Examples: Have you been here before? What can I help you with today?” 
  • Ask open-ended to start a dialogue with visitors and get information that will help you ensure that they have a great experience.  
  • *Examples: “Are you considering adopting today? Did you have any particular dog in mind? Are you looking for a specific type of personality? Let me know if you have any questions or if you see someone you would like to meet!”  

Talking to Visitors about the Dogs

  • People sometimes don’t know if they are taking a pet home that day and really want to connect with the right dog.  
  • It’s okay if you don’t know all the answers to questions! Don’t try to guess, because incorrect or confusing information could change the outcome of a potential adoption. You can either ask an Animal Care Specialist in the dog area or walk the visitor up front to speak with an Adoption Specialist about any questions they may have. You do not need to stay up front with the visitor while they speak with the specialist.
  • Be positive and upbeat when sharing the experiences you’ve had with that dog & remind visitors that Adoption Specialists have detailed information about them.
  • We don’t label our dogs as any specific breeds because we focus on their personality- also, we don’t know what they are and would only be making a guess! If a potential adopter continues to ask about the breed, please advise them to speak with an Adoption Specialist for more information. Please do not speculate on what type of breed you think a dog is.
  • Don’t use language that may lead the visitor to believe that they will be able to adopt the dog. Show them where  the QR Code for the adoption survey is so they can schedule their appointment to speak with an adoption specialist. You may also look up the adoptable dog list on your phone and advise the potential adopter if a dog is already on an adoption hold. There are different reasons why a dog would be placed on temporary hold so please advise them to speak with an Adoption Specialist for more details. We encourage backup adoptions for dogs but do not accept backup adoptions for puppies.

SAFE & PRODUCTIVE INTRODUCTIONS & INTERACTIONS

Hand sanitizer must be used before entering a dog or puppy bedrooms and before interacting with puppies from different tubs.

Dog Guidelines : 

  • Minimize distractions before visits by removing food-related items like Kongs using an object trade. If a dog focuses more on a toy than a visitor, temporarily remove the toy or ask an Animal Care Specialist if you can relocate the dog to a different area.
  • Never unleash a dog; instead, drop the leash end if safe.
  • Always stay with visitors and dogs, especially if minors are present or if safety is a concern. Stay in the play yard unless another volunteer or staff member takes over.
  • If visitors need privacy or others are waiting, you may step out & stay nearby in the same area to help them exit safely.

Dog Visit Locations: 

  • Dog bedrooms: Visits typically happen in the dog's bedroom unless stated otherwise on the door. Enter first, leash the dog, then invite guests in. Visitors can offer treats unless specified otherwise.
  • Play yards: Visits are allowed in the play yards unless noted on the door. Check with an Animal Care Specialist first to ensure that there is no other dog out in the play yard. Stay in the yard during the visit unless another volunteer or staff takes over.

Puppy Tub Visits:

  • Only 5 visitors may enter the puppy room at a time.
  • Do not step into the puppy tubs or put puppies on the floor (other than tub or visit room floors) & do not allow visitors to do so either.
  • Only volunteers or staff can pick up puppies. Have visitors sit in a chair or on the bench and place them into their lap.
  • To pick up and handle a puppy, place one hand under the puppy’s chest and the other hand under his/her bottom. Never pick up puppies by their armpits as this may cause their recent spay or neuter sites to become open.
  • Puppies from different rooms or tubs cannot be mixed and may not be removed from the puppy area.

Cleaning Instructions

 If you see a mess in any of the bedrooms (except Pink or Purple Star dogs), please clean it up. This  applies to everyone. Please sweep and mop under the crates as well. See Canine Butler instructions for more details.

Wrapping Up

Make sure that you let the next matchmaker know what is going on with visitors or dogs, and let staff know that you are leaving.  Please put away dirty linens, dishes, toys, etc in the laundry room and food prep room before leaving.  Also, put away any cleaning supplies that you used to clean messes.  

We are fortunate to have volunteers who are dedicated to connecting people with their new family members. Your work is much appreciated!

Additional Resource Library

This library contains a series of videos meant to be an additional resource to help with your success and support as a Dog Butler.  You can refer to these videos as often as you need! Thank you for your dedication to our dogs and puppies! You are making a difference in their lives and in ours! Keep up the amazing work!

Overview

Dog Butlers take the dogs out into the play yards for exercise and nature calls. They clean up after the dogs in bedrooms and yards, and provide positive interactions and training. Each Dog Butler is responsible for one suite (pod) with 4-5 dog bedrooms.

Please complete the Survey Below.  Once you have submitted the survey, the Director of Volunteers will update your account and you will be able to view and schedule your Shadow Training Session.

If you want to take the Crazy Awesome Customer Service for Animal People to learn more about providing amazing experiences to our visitors, please do so by clicking on the button below, if you are not registered for Maddie's University, not to worry, it is free!

https://university.maddiesfund.org/products/crazy-awesome-customer-service-for-animal-people