Sri Lanka Dog Volunteering
2-4 weeks from £829
- Stay in a volunteer villa in the beautiful colonial city of Galle
- Feed and care for the programme’s cute puppies
- Groom, feed and help socialise older dogs
- Help with local dog vaccination programmes
- Explore world-class beaches at the weekends
Love travel? Love dogs? Then this is the perfect trip for you! Life as a stray dog in Sri Lanka is pretty rough. Most animals live on the streets and suffer disease, hunger and injury. Our Dog Care Clinic rescues hundreds of dogs and puppies every year and you can help them continue their invaluable work. Spend 2 – 4 weeks in gorgeous Galle feeding, cuddling, cleaning and playing with the adorable animals that the clinic looks after. You’ll also have plenty of free time to check out Galle and the area’s golden beaches. It’s a unique way of exploring Asia while giving back to the community.
Want to find out more?
Download more trip information and detailed itinerary
Our programme starts on a Saturday and you choose how long you want to stay (between 2 and 4 weeks). Working hours are Monday to Friday, with a 4 -5 hour shift each day, falling either in the morning or afternoon. Your weekends are free to explore the stunning local area.
You’ll spend most of your time at the Clinic, working hands-on with dogs and puppies. The type of tasks you might be asked to do include:
- Puppy care
- Playing with and cuddling dogs
- Giving out treats
- Checking dog boxes
- Help socialising dogs
- Removal of parasites
- Basic wound cleaning
- Medicine distribution
- Helping with the vaccination programme
You'll be given all the training and support you need while on the project, working with the experienced team of 40 vets, caretakers and operations personnel who run the care centre. You'll also be provided all the equipment you'll need while volunteering, including 3 volunteer t-shirts.
All your accommodation and your meals (Monday to Friday) are included. You’ll also get an introduction session, tour of the clinic on your first day, local culture training and an orientation tour of Galle on arrival.
You'll also be staying with other volunteers from our other projects in Sri Lanka in a social volunteer house, which can house up to 30 people.
As well as your volunteering duties you may also have the opportunity to take part in a number of activites which may occur whilst you are at the project, such as:
- Weekly yoga class from an experienced yoga teacher
- Weekly movie night on large screen projector
- Monthly guided bike tour around the local paddyfields and countryside
- Monthly special Sri Lanka BBQ dinner
- Monthly cultural visit to Buddhist temple
The nearby town of Galle is a perfectly preserved colonial trading port brimming with Dutch villas, palm trees, beautiful mosques and churches. It’s a compact jewel with atmospheric streets full of colour and is much more peaceful than the other major cities in Sri Lanka.
The local area is full of beautiful beaches that can be reached with a short tuk tuk ride. Galle is also heaven for foodies, with a fascinating mix of cultural influences, and you'll have plenty of time to explore the are, and the rest of incredible Sri Lanka during your time away from the project!
- All accommodation
- Three meals a day
- Airport transfers
- Introduction session
- Orientation tour of Galle
- Local culture training
- Three Dog Care Clinic t-shirts
- Daily transport to and from the project
- Dog project activities
- Weekly yoga class on rooftop terrace
- Weekly movie night
- Monthly bike tour of local villages
- Monthly garden BBQ
- 24 hour emergency support
- Travel insurance
- International flights
- Some meals, snacks and drinks
- Optional activities and excursions
The accommodation you will stay in a a volunteer house in southern Sri Lanka's Unawatuna district of Galle. The volunteer house overlooks Unawatuna beach which is just a 5 minute walk away and the historic city of Galle is a 15 minute tuk tuk ride away.
There are 11 ensuite bedrooms with a maximum of 6 per room, although most rooms are are only 4. Rooms are single sex, but private room upgrades are available at extra cost. The house has 3 kitchens, 3 common areas, a dining area, private outdoor garden and swimming pool. The house is covered by CCTV and is located in a safe and quiet residential neighbourhood. Hot water and wifi included. Airconditioning and laundry facilities are available at an extra charge which is payable locally.
3 meals a day during the week are provided at the volunteer house. These will be prepared by the in-house chef using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Breakfasts usually consist of pancakes, eggs or fruit. Lunch and dinner is often Sri Lankan curry with vegetables, pasta, soups, wraps or fresh salads. You will need to purchase any additional snacks yourself, and there is storage for your food in the kitchen.
You should arrange your flight into Colombo International Airport between the hours of 8am and 5pm on your programme start date. You will be met at the airport and transferred to your accommodation near Galle. If you arrive outside of these times (and if your flight is delayed so you arrive after 5pm), you will need to pay for a private transfer, please contact us for details.
Your project finishes on your programme end date, please arrange your flights to depart from Colombo International Airport between 10am and 7pm. A departure airport transfer is included between these times however if you flight departs at other times no transfer will be included but can be arranged locally; please ensure that you allow plenty of time for your journey back to Colombo and check-in at the airport.
The minimum age to participate in this volunteer experience is 18 years; this is an open-aged volunteer programme so you are likely to meet other volunteers of varying ages on this project.
You will need to get a visa before arrival for Sri Lanka with a UK passport. You can apply for a Electronic Travel Authorization visa online (ETA) through the offical Sri Lankan ETA website.
We recommend you check the latest visa regulations with the Sri Lanka Embassy.
If you intend to stay for longer than 30 days, you will need to make an appointment with the Sri Lankan Embassy in the UK to apply for a 90 day visa. You should also ensure that your passport will still be in date for six months after your return. All visa information is subject to change and you should consult the nearest High Commission or Embassy for the most up to date information.
What Kind Of Clothes Should I Pack For When I’m Volunteering?
You’ll be given three volunteer t-shirts. The rest of your clothing should be comfortable but conservative. Footwear should be comfortable trainers or sandals. We also recommend that you bring a light rain jacket.
Are Meals Included?
You’ll get three meals a day (Monday to Friday). You’ll need to buy your own meals at the weekend and any additional snacks or drinks.
Will There Be Other Volunteers At The Clinic?
This is a popular trip so it’s likely there will be other volunteers on the programme at the same time as you. There will be a maximum of 8 volunteers at any one time, and up to 30 volunteers at the volunteer house.
Can I Get In Touch With Other Volunteers Before I Go?
Yes! Join our Facebook group to find others on your trip before you depart.
Due to Covid-19, many of our partners and suppliers across the globe are putting in place new procedures and policies regarding health and safety in response to the outbreak. These new measures will adapt and change as the state of travel evolves, and the policies and procedures will vary depending on each trip. Some changes that you may experience on our trips are:
Updated safety & hygiene procedures
Health and safety measures will be adapted by our partners and suppliers, dependent on local laws and restrictions.
Different transport & accommodation
You may find yourself on transport or in accommodation that would not typically be used, such as hostels that are more secluded, or on more private transport. This may vary by trip, or even by individual departure dates.
Most trips include a meeting on arrival with the guide or local team to discuss the trip, and this is an opportunity for you to ask any questions. You should arrive in time to attend these briefings.
Emergency support 24/7
We have a UK based 24/7 emergency phone line if you have a genuine urgent matter that you need attending.
Knowledgeable & Trained Staff
We can help answer any questions or concerns you may have before you depart. Whilst travelling the guide or local team on our trips are there to help, and to ensure the smooth running of our trips.
Should you require medical assistance whilst travelling, the local team or guide will be able to help you get to a point of care. Medical facilities and standards can vary across the glove, so you should ensure you have adequate travel insurance in place.
Varying group sizes
To begin with, many trips will run with amended group sizes, so you may find smaller groups than would be typical. This may vary by trip, or even by individual departure dates.
Whilst there may be changes on our trips, it is vital that you make travelling safer for yourself, your travel companions, the local staff and guides, and the people of the country you are visiting. You should follow all local laws and restrictions, and follow the guidance of the local team. In addition, you can help make travel safer by bringing and using your own face coverings/masks and hand sanitiser, social distance where appropriate, wash your hands frequently, and cover your face when coughing or sneezing.