Home Dog Care 9 Best Gifts for Animal Shelter Employees and Volunteers

9 Best Gifts for Animal Shelter Employees and Volunteers

The 9 Best Gifts for Animal Shelter Employees and Volunteers

Animal shelters often rely on volunteers to function but whether this important job is done by paid employees or volunteers doesn’t really matter. They all deserve gratitude for their work and if you are looking for a perfect gift to express that gratitude, we have a few choices in mind.

Themed Coffee Mugs

Coffee cups and mugs are always necessary at the workplace. Whether animal shelter employees and volunteers prefer to drink coffee or tea, nice animal-themed coffee mugs will surely come in handy.

You can choose a set of coffee mugs like this Animal Coffee Mugs Set, or you can go with the “Mornings are Ruff” Coffee Mug but make sure to purchase at least four of them.

Pet Supplies

Animal shelter employees and volunteers will certainly be thankful for pet supplies. This may not be a gift for them personally but it is a gift that can make animals in shelters more comfortable and thus make the employees and volunteers happy.

Things that animal shelters need you to donate include leashes, collars, pet grooming supplies, office supplies, pet food and treats, pet hygiene products, toys, etc. Even things like towels and other stuff that can be used as bedding is always welcome.


If you want to put an instant smile on the face of animal shelter employees and volunteers, food is always a good choice. Ordering a pizza or showing up with a batch of freshly baked cookies is a certain way to lift the mood at the shelter.

You can also go with a gift basket of some kind, like this Connoisseur Gift Basket with a bunch of different sweets or this Classic Gourmet Fruit Basket with fresh fruit, nuts, and crackers.


Cash is often the most practical gift you can give to someone, even though it may be somewhat impersonal. However, giving cash instead of buying a present is impersonal if you know the receiver well.

In this particular case, cash is a good way to say that you care about the shelter and the people working there. You can make a donation to the shelter or leave some cash in an envelope for all the employees and volunteers to share.

Gift Cards

You may feel like gifts cards are impersonal but many people love gift cards. When you purchase gift cards for animal shelter employees and volunteers, keep in mind which stores are nearby. Some of the gift cards you can give include Amazon, Target, Walmart, Starbucks, Best Buy, etc.

In addition to this, you can also choose a gift card for pet stores, like PetsMart or Petco. This way, animal shelter employees and volunteers can buy exactly what they need to help the shelter running smoothly.

Funny Animal Signs

Funny animal signs are a perfect gift for animal shelter employees and volunteers. After all, what better way is there to decorate an animal shelter than with funny animal-themed signs.

There are a lot of great choices here but our suggestions include this hand-painted “Welcome to the Zoo” sign and this wooden “Drink Wine, Save Animals, Take Naps” Box Sign.

Funny Animal Doormats

Just like the funny signs, funny animal doormats are also a thoughtful and entertaining present you can give to animal shelter employees and volunteer.

Once again, you have a lot of options to choose from. Our favorites are this “Animals Welcome (People Tolerated)” doormat, as well as this “Just So You Know There's Like A Lot of Animals in Here” doormat.


If you are looking for a more personal gift for a specific animal shelter employee or volunteer, books are always a good idea.

Since it is safe to assume that you are looking for a book for an animal lover, our suggestions include A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron, Animal Wise: How We Know Animals Think and Feel by Virginia Morell, and the classic novel by Jack London, The Call of the Wild.

Treat Jars

Animal shelters need a place to store treats and a pretty treat jar can be very helpful in this respect. Of course, you want to make sure that the jar is both stylish and large enough since it’s supposed to keep treats for multiple animals.

For example, this Harmony Ceramic Dog Treat Jar is a good choice, as well as this stylish Park Life Designs Treat Jar. You may also like this artistic FineLife Ceramic Pet Treat Jar.

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Shelly lives in Iowa with her husband and Australian Shepherd named Tex. She's been an animal lover since she was a child. Currently, she enjoys reading and writing about dogs, and spending time with her family and getting involved in all things pets.