General Position Summary
The Adoption Counselor will be responsible to find good homes for dogs, cats and other animals both at the shelter and at off site adoption events, while creating a positive experience for prospective adopters. The ideal candidate will be friendly outgoing and have strong customer services skills as well as experience with cats and dogs.
Responsibilities of this role include:
- Actively reaching out to and interacting with the general public, specifically greeting visitors and talking with prospective adopters to find out what they are looking for in a pet.
- Interacting with/getting to know the animals and talking with prospective adopters about them in order to make the best possible match.
- Providing high quality customer service to people who visit or call Nevada SPCA and maintaining a friendly demeanor.
- Helping people through the adoption process, sharing information about animal care and behavior, reviewing adoption applications, interviewing applicants in a conversational way, making decisions to finalize or deny an adoption, and communicating with the applicant in such a manner that maintains a courteous and friendly attitude even when declining a request.
- Following up on adoptions by phone once the animal has been placed in the new home.
- Advising people who want to surrender their pet to Nevada SPCA, with the goal of keeping the pet in the home. This may occur in person, over the phone or via e-mail.
- Willingness and ability to learn the Animal Shelter Manager computer program we use to track animals in the shelter.
- Willingness and ability to learn about cat and dog behavior, common issues, and ways to address them in order to make good adoption matches and to keep animals in homes.
- Assisting with the cleaning of animal areas and equipment as needed, including spot cleaning of animal and the lobby area throughout the day.
- Transporting animals, cages and other equipment to and from off-site events.
- Working with volunteers to increase adoptions.
- Photographing adoptions and documenting and sharing positive adoption stories.
- Monitoring the health of the animals on an ongoing basis and rapidly identifying any health problems or conditions (medical or behavioral) and immediately reporting it to the supervisor or animal care manager.
- Filling in for other areas and performing other tasks/functions as needed, including helping out at special events.
Required experience and abilities for this role include:
- Strong interpersonal skills. The ideal person for this job would be personable, outgoing, patient, professional, and able to get along well with a variety of people. Excellent written and oral communications skills.
- Maturity, good judgment and a professional personal appearance.
- The ability to remain pleasant and calm even in stressful situations.
- The ability to ask appropriate questions to gather information along with the ability to feel and show empathy for others.
- The ability to learn about and understanding each animal as an individual with his or her own personality, bad habits, past experiences, etc.
- Familiarity with animals, knowledge of animal behavior or experience volunteering or working with an animal shelter, foster care involvement or other animal welfare agency are a plus.
- Comfort and ability to work with animals of unknown disposition and those who may exhibit medical and other problems, as well as aggressive tendencies.
Responsibilities of all Nevada SPCA staff include:
- Treating all animals with respect and compassion at all times and promoting a humane and caring attitude toward all animals.
- Working courteously and cooperatively with colleagues, other organizations, and volunteers.
- Ensuring superior customer service by being courteous and kind, demonstrating respect and empathy, promptly addressing concerns, and resolving problems promptly.
- Willingness to assist with tasks outside of primary realm of responsibility, as needed, including animal care, adoptions, and events and always in a manner which demonstrates interest, care, and concern for the colleagues, the public, and animals we serve.
- Helping to ensure that all established procedures and policies are followed within the intended spirit of each.
- Being alert to and providing information on success stories to appropriate team members.
Required qualifications for all Nevada SPCA staff include:
- Commitment to the mission and goals of NSPCA.
- Affection for animals—concern for their welfare and a willingness to accommodate animals in the workplace.
- Flexibility—the ability to adjust to changing priorities and varied tasks and schedules; willingness to learn new things.
- Initiative and follow through―taking initiative and working with minimal supervision.
- Appearance― neat and clean personal appearance and friendly demeanor.
Terms of Employment
- There is no minimum period of employment guaranteed or implied by acceptance of an employment offer.
- A 90-day probation period is implemented for all staff.
Daily reporting hours and days of the week may vary according to the needs of the department schedule and may include weekend and holiday work.
Wage Range: up to $15.00 per hour based on experience.
- Three weeks paid time off (for vacation, sick, and personal time) on an annual basis accrued per details in the employee handbook.
- Health Insurance—optional individual medical insurance with 20% employee contribution and 80% employer contribution.
- Three paid holidays—Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day.
High school graduation minimum, plus three years of public contact work and/or experience working with animals.
- Physical ability to walk and/or stand on your feet throughout a normal workday.
- Physical ability to engage in repetitive motions of legs, arms, and hands, to hear, to see, and to move animals and goods.
- Ability to lift and move objects and animals weighing up to 50 pounds for short distances and to humanely restrain an animal when necessary.
- Comfort and ability to work with animals of unknown disposition and those who may exhibit medical conditions and other problems, as well as aggressive tendencies.
- Ability to work around loud noises, chlorine and other cleaning chemicals, and in inclement weather.
- Allergic conditions which would be aggravated when handling or working with animals or in the shelter environment may be a disqualification.
- Ability to read, write and understand English.
Euthanasia Policy for Animals:
Staff members must be aware of NSPCA euthanasia policy. From time to time NSPCA euthanizes animals who are sick or injured. Also, from time to time NSPCA needs to end the life of a dog who has displayed aggressive tendencies and who poses a risk to public safety or to the safety of other animals.