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People passionate about preserving local wildlife sought to volunteer for HOWL

animal services officer holding a small animal

If you’re passionate about animals and want to help preserve local wildlife, consider applying for the Helping out Wildlife Locally (HOWL) Volunteer Program. 

Mission Viejo Animal Services is seeking dedicated adults interested in helping the local wildlife and community through this volunteer program. HOWL volunteers take 20 hours of specialized training on the natural history of local wildlife, animal services operations, common wildlife issues and attractants. Volunteers also learn proper wildlife hazing and conflict mitigation techniques. 

Once trained, HOWL volunteers receive uniforms and participate in a variety of assignments that may include:    

  • Wildlife patrols 
  • Wildlife conflict mitigation and incident education canvassing 
  • Wildlife attractant yard and area assessments 
  • Trail and park patrols 
  • Public education events 
  • Wildlife rehabilitation transport 
  • Disaster response assistance 

Program Requirements: 

  • Must be at least 18
  • Must be enthusiastic about helping local wildlife
  • Ability to work outdoors, may include walking for extended periods of time or hiking
  • Must possess good verbal and communication skills 
  • Assist with emergencies 
  • Participation in community projects and events 
  • Team player 


  • Field volunteers are expected to complete a 20-hour introductory training that takes place in the early late afternoon hours
  • Volunteers are expected to complete a minimum of eight hours a month and participate in volunteer meetings, events, activities, or projects

For more information or to complete the interest form, visit this link.


Submitted by Brad Robitaille on Thu, 03/23/2023 - 7:53 am


I'm a recently retired So Cal native (and 30 year resident of MV) and I am interested in participating in the HOWL program.

Submitted by Debbie Gude on Tue, 03/28/2023 - 2:25 pm


I submitted an application for this volunteer opportunity nearly 2 weeks ago, and now notice that you are no longer excepting volunteer participants. Will you be choosing someone from the candidates who submitted applications prior to your closing the volunteer window?

Submitted by Larry on Mon, 11/20/2023 - 2:20 pm


Brad and Debbie, It doesn't look like your comments were answered. As a member of HOWL, I would like to invite you to apply. We do need Volunteers and it's a wonderful way to learn about our wildlife while helping out the city. If you need any help applying to HOWL feel free to email me directly and I'll get your application in the right hands.

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