Rescue Ranch Animal Care Internship

Application Deadline: February 15, 2024

Animal Care - Internship Opportunity


Rescue Ranch is seeking candidates to intern with our Animal Ambassadors.  Our Animal Ambassadors include a variety of small mammals, (rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchilla, degus, and hedgehogs), birds (Quaker Parrots, Umbrella Cockatoo, African Grey and Eclectus), reptiles (variety of snakes including ball pythons, sand boas, corn snake, western hognose, California King snake and crawl cay boa, bearded dragon, leopard geckos, crested geckos, blue tongue skink and uromastyx), as well as barn yard animals (goats, sheep, potbellied pigs, miniature horses, poultry, steer, alpacas and sulcata tortoises).  Our Animal Care Interns will be expected to be able to handle a variety of animals and engage guests in public animal presentations.  Interns will work closely with staff and volunteers, independently and alongside animals that could be considered dangerous.  The applicant will need to show maturity and drive and be able to follow written and verbal directions. Prior animal experience is preferred but not required.  

Experience Includes:

Experience will be invaluable for interns planning a career in a variety of animal care fields.  As an intern, you will be able to learn about animal observations, record keeping, animal handling, animal presentations, diet preparation, animal husbandry, safety policies and procedures, administering medications, and/or supplements, enrichment, observing veterinary procedures, among other essential animal care duties.  Interns will assist with construction and habitat modification and related activities.  Interns will also be involved with the volunteer program, education programs, and events. 


  • Uphold and apply USDA standards throughout the facility with daily cleaning and facility maintenance. 
  • Assist with daily husbandry for a variety of animals.
  • Properly prepare species specific diets based on natural and individual needs.
  • Implement enrichment for a variety of animals and design original enrichment.
  • Assist and/or lead animal presentations with a variety of animals for diverse groups in a courteous and professional manner. 
  • Help maintain the general cleanliness of the facility. 
  • Effectively communicate with staff regarding all elements of the internship.


  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Must be able to pass background check. 
  • Must produce negative tuberculosis test prior to start date. 
  • Must currently be enrolled in college in a related field of study. 
  • Must have a valid driver's license and have reliable transportation to and from internship. 
  • Must be able to lift 50 pounds occasionally and work in all types of weather environments (extreme heat and humidity, rain and freezing temperatures).
  • Ability to stand and be on your feet for prolonged periods of time. 
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills are required.
  • Must be able to work with or without direct supervision and follow written and oral instructions. 
  • Ability to multitask, be self-motivated, and work in a fast-paced environment. 
  • Must follow Rescue Ranch policies as it relates to dress code and appearance.  Must be able to represent the facility in a professional manner, both onsite and offsite. 

Compensation and Benefits:

Internships are unpaid.  Housing and transportation are the responsibility of the intern.  Course credit may be available to current college students with intern's institution of study.  Participation in the internship program is not a guarantee of future employment. 

Health and Safety: 

This internship can be physically demanding.  Consider these factors and exposures when applying:

  • Must be able to lift a minimum of 50 pounds.
  • Frequent bending, stretching, climbing into small spaces.
  • Occasionally strenuous tasks may be assigned. 
  • Extreme weather conditions related to outdoor work. 
  • Strong odors including dust, hay, and animal hair/fur/dander. 
  • Loud and abrupt noises

To Apply:

Send cover letter, one (1) page resume and one (1) professional letter of reference (must be professional, no family or friends) via email to [email protected], with "internship" in the subject line. 

Applicants will be required to complete a preliminary interview (either in person or remote) before being considered for an internship position. Applicants are not guaranteed a follow up interview or internship position. 

Applications are received on a rolling basis with the following deadlines by semester: 

  • Spring: February - April with application deadline of November 15
  • Summer: May - July with application deadline of February 15
  • Fall: August - October with application deadline of May 15
  • Winter: - November - January with an application deadline of August 15

**These dates are subject to change and can be adjusted if needed on a case-by-case basis, pending approval by Rescue Ranch authorized representatives. 

Duration / Time Commitment: 

Internships may require working Saturdays, Sundays, and/or holidays.  Minimum of 24 hours to maximum 40 hours per week is expected for a minimum of eight (8) weeks.  Upon evaluation, interns may be invited to extend their term if opportunity is available.  Term start dates are dependent upon your selected orientation date and internship availability. Schedules can/may be flexible to accommodate other educational or employment obligations. 

Please note that students from Davidson Davie Community College in the ZAS program will follow the programs deadlines for applications, hours completed and other specified criteria for the program.  If there are questions, please contact Leslie Smith at [email protected]

Rescue Ranch 1424 Turnersburg Hwy., Statesville, NC 28625
Schedule: Intern
Originally posted by Rescue Ranch via Locable
Rescue Ranch

5.0 (85 Reviews)
Rescue Ranch

1424 Turnersburg Hwy.
Statesville, NC 28625

Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat, Sun 8:00am- 4:00pm

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