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We envision a community of volunteers who take shelter dogs on meaningful adventures while they await their forever homes. We aim to improve the lives of shelter dogs and provide relief for animal shelter staff. Getting shelter dogs outside and into the community increases their chances of being adopted and improves their behaviors in the shelter. 

Our goal with partner shelters is to provide volunteer recruitment services and organized volunteer efforts to increase the volunteer activity at your shelter. 


RunningDog offers a crowdsourcing approach to connect eager, dog-loving volunteers with animal shelters. Volunteers will complete both the RunningDog virtual training program and the shelter’s volunteer training program. 

Many of our volunteers become involved with RunningDog because they are avid runners, looking to run with high energy dogs. Our volunteers tend to gravitate towards the larger and more challenging dogs in the shelter, recognizing how strongly they can benefit from physical activity and the mental stimulation that an outdoor run provides. 


















Our request to partner shelters is to let RunningDog volunteers take dogs off shelter grounds. Our virtual training highlights specific safety measures when taking a dog on a run, transporting a dog in a vehicle, and steps for avoiding conflict. On average, a volunteer will be out with a dog for 30-90 minutes. 

Detailed Services RunningDog provides:

Pack Runs- RunningDog organizes regular pack runs, with a focus on an ‘empty the shelter’ approach. The goal of pack runs is for RunningDog to get a large group of dogs out of the shelter to allow for staff to have time to clean kennels, and complete other tasks that are normally challenging to do with all of the dogs on-site. Therefore, we ask for a shelter representative to coordinate with us and provide feedback on the most helpful times to organize pack runs. 



















RunningDog volunteers are dedicated and passionate. They will often still pick up a dog in the snow or rain, understanding that the dog still needs to go outside regardless of the weather. Volunteers enjoy giving dogs unique experiences, such as taking a dip in a lake during hot weather or participating in a dog friendly race. These experiences expose dogs to different areas of the community, providing more information to the dog’s personality outside of the shelter. It is common for community members to inquire about adoptable dogs they see out on hikes with RunningDog volunteers.  




















Volunteer Recruitment- RunningDog will recruit volunteers from areas surrounding your shelter/rescue location. Our already established large volunteer base will be aware of your partnership and encouraged to assist at your site. Pack runs and other events will be shared with our entire volunteer base. 

Location Mapping- RunningDog will put together an area map of safe places to run and hike with dogs near your location. This map will be available to all of our volunteers, and updated based on construction and weather closings. 

Social Media- RunnningDog has a very active volunteer Facebook page and primary Facebook and Instagram accounts. We are always willing to promote partner events and encourage volunteers to participate. Our volunteer Facebook page contains daily posts from volunteers regarding adoptable dogs with pictures and behavior descriptions. These posts are available for all partners to share. 

To inquire about becoming a RunningDog partner, please contact us at

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