Internships in Animal Rescue, Shelter Operations, Veterinary Medicine and Wildlife Rehabilitation

Center Valley Animal Rescue (CVAR) in Quilcene, Washington has two to three unpaid internships available. These are offered quarterly but may be tailored for your school’s time frame.  There are new living quarters in an apartment on site that will be shared with the other interns.  

About Us 

CVAR is a non-profit no-kill animal rescue and shelter with a limited budget and a volunteer force of, on average, 45 – 50 dedicated people. We are funded mostly on private donations. 

CVAR was established in 2002 and on it’s present site since 2004. We have 32 acres in a rural area, a building for a variety of small animals and outdoor pastures, 3 barns and other smaller shelters for large animals; a new dog building is under construction at this time. A separate area is used for wildlife rehab with many enclosures and two small buildings. 

We also have a full medical facility equipped with surgery and treatment areas; digital x-ray; dental x-ray; new up-dated dental equipment and more.  There are three Veterinarian that donate their time on a regular basis and our director is a LVT and Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator. 

We are on the picturesque Olympic Peninsula with a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities. Seattle is a short drive and ferry ride away. 

About the Position 

  • Internships are offered quarterly and will be for a minimum of 20 hours/week. This will include some weekend work and some potential holiday work. This is an opportunity to get hands on experience with different aspects of farm animal and companion animal rescue and care and daily care of wildlife. It also will help build the knowledge base of running a no-kill shelter and hone adoption screening skills; gain veterinary skills and experience with all the above animals. 
  • Interns will assist with the daily tasks of animal care at CVAR. This may include feeding, giving meds to a variety of animals. After a period of training, the intern may take on the morning and evening feeding and meds (meds are most often the cats only). This will begin under the supervision of the Director who is a licensed veterinary technician and our staff. On demonstration of competency the intern can continue the care without close supervision. Interns may be asked to fill in when volunteers are unable to come in. This may include cleaning and other care of any number of species as needed. 
  • Interns may help during Open to the Public days by giving tours and helping people who are interested in adopting a pet that is a good match. 
  • Interns will help with intake of animals as needed as well as release of wild animals. 
  • Transport +/- animal capture may all be delegated as experience is gained 
  • Many aspect of wildlife care and rehabilitation will be performed; including cleaning, feeding, medicating, bottle or tube feeding, enrichment…. 
  • Assist with spay/neuter and vaccination clinics 
  • Assist with surgeries, treatments, diagnostic testing on a multitude of animals 


Daily activities could include: 

  • Care for domestic/exotic animals in care: dogs, cats, rabbits, small animals (mice, rats, chinchillas…), birds, reptiles and anything else we may have. 
  • Care for farm animals and equines: horses, goats, sheep, llamas, alpacas, pigs, emus, poultry, bovines and anyone else that may be here. 
  • Care for wildlife in rehabilitation as well as education animals: raccoons, deer, squirrels, opossums, rabbits, rodents, coyotes, bats (if you have proof of rabies vaccinations only), ducks and geese, gulls, raptors, owls and anyone else we may have. 
  • Animal care may include cleaning cages, stalls, rooms, enclosures, feeding, medicating, transporting, capturing, restraining…. 
  • Research and carry out (after approval) enrichment ideas for the animals 
  • Learn protocol for quarantine for both inside and outside animals and demonstrate adherence. 
  • Help write up protocols and enrichment plans for all types of animals. 
  • Online classes: we have started building an online set of classes.  You will be expected to take them and we would be thrilled if you would like to help us create more! 
  • Surgery/clinic Days: Assist the veterinarians and LVT with all aspects of clinics, including:  Scheduling appointments, Checking in and out clients/patients, cleaning and wrapping surgery packs, drawing up injections, animal handling and restraint, placing microchips, help maintain records, help with treatments and diagnostic tests.  Some of this will depend on the interns qualifications/licensing but other duties could include, supervised surgeries, taking x-rays, emergency care, dentistry, iv catheter placement, injections, tube feeding, exams…… 
  • Assist farm animal vet and accompany her on rounds to other clients. 
  • Observe at local veterinary clinic/hospital. May include observing surgeries or appointments and helping the DVM’s or staff. 
  • Objectives can be developed to help each student achieve learning goals.  This should be done at the beginning or before the internship and evaluated after. 
  • Special projects can be established to benefit both student and CVAR. Projects can be worked on during ‘down times.’ 


  • Age: Must be 18 or over 
  • Must have a strong interest in animal welfare, be a self-starter and exhibit a willingness to learn. 
  • Experience with animal care preferred.
  • Preference given to students considering a career in wildlife or veterinary medicine. 
  • We will look for the same qualities that we find in our volunteers: enthusiastic, mature, hard working people who work with the overall team in an open and supportive manner. 
  • Must be able to list at least 50lbs on a daily basis. 
  • Strong verbal communication skills or willingness to learn  
  • Ability to work independently and work as a member of a team 

The Basics of Life 

  • Housing: The newly constructed apartment includes a kitchen and bathroom in the loft of one of our barns.  This space will be shared with the other interns.
  • There is lots to do in the area if you like nature.  We are not far from beaches, mountains and hiking.  It is about 2 hours to Seattle. 
  • Public transportation is minimal – Jefferson Transit has one bus that runs past here and up to connecting buses and to Port Townsend 4 times daily, twice on Saturdays and does not run on Sundays. It is suggested that interns have their own vehicle for transportation. 
  • This is a volunteer position. 

To Apply

Please email a resume and cover letter, as well as dates available to: