Best Friends Animal Society
  • 555- Westside Adoption Center
  • Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • Full Time

Join Best Friends and turn your career into a labor of love. The benefits package is one of the best! Medical, Dental, Vision, Basic and Supplemental Life Insurance, Short and Long Term Disability, Child Care reimbursement, Pet Sitting reimbursement, Flexible Spending Account, Health Savings Account, PTO, Paid Holidays, Employee Assistance Program, 401k and Staff Discounts.

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Position Summary: The Lead Pet Caregiver is responsible for the day to day activity and employee productivity in the pet care department along with, and in the absence of the NKLA Pet Adoption Center Manager. Specific duties include but are not limited to: leading caregivers, as well as working as a member of the pet caregiving team to ensure that the daily feeding, cleaning, medicating, and enrichment of the pet population is done in accordance to time frames and protocols, ensuring quality client service at all times, confirming accurate record keeping of animal intake, medical, and behavior documentation, training of staff and volunteers in all aspects of the caregiving department, maintaining familiarity with the center's admission process with Best Friends Animal Society-Los Angeles and NKLA coalition members, maintaining appropriate communication with NKLA coalition partners, promptly handling staff or volunteer conflicts using performance management processes, assisting in various volunteer programs and adoption processes, and enthusiastically promoting animals and the NKLA Pet Adoption Center to the public.  

Essential and Primary Duties/Responsibilities Include:

  • Perform and ensure daily feeding, cleaning, medicating and enrichment of the pet population is done in accordance to time frames and protocols; this includes working with the NKLA Pet Adoption Center Manager to keep standard operating procedures (SOP's) relevant and current, as well as ensure regular implementation and continuing education on SOP's for staff and volunteers.
  • Ensure all pet caregiving staff and volunteers are trained in all policies and procedures of Best Friends Animal Society including: performing all animal caregiving tasks, delivering exceptional client service, assisting all clients with finding appropriate pets by facilitating introductions to appropriate animals, disseminating appropriate information about animals and the organization, and communicating an understanding of the NKLA Pet Adoption Center's high level of life saving and positive productivity. Establish priorities of importance to ensure pet caregivers are on task and that these policies and procedures are met on a daily basis.
  • Work closely with the manager in various area of oversight of staff, including but not limited to:
      • Schedules
      • Payroll
      • Conflict resolution 
      • Identifying and addressing employee relations and operations issues
      • Identifying, addressing, and evaluating staff performance
  • Present recommendations to the manager about staff performance (areas for opportunity, strengths, future goals, potential, etc.) quarterly to encourage performance feedback that moves the department and staff forward.
  • Collaborate with the NKLA Pet Adoption Center Manager to host, or plan and lead independently, staff meetings or huddles to keep the team informed of goals, updates, training opportunities, and other pertinent information.
  • In collaboration with the Pet Admission Coordinator and Lead Adoption Specialist, step in as support when needed in the admissions department for tasks including but not limited to: performing of animal intake exams, scheduling animal care treatments and vaccines, data entry of animal health and history in animal care software, and other processes as outlined in the Admissions Protocol for both BFAS and NKLA coalition animals.
  • Monitor pet eating habits, behavior, and medical habits or issues, and ensure documentation is given to the Best Friends Medical Team in Mission Hills or appropriate Coalition Partner point of contact.
  • Keep animal records current with information which will help place them into suitable homes, including entering past and current medical examinations, observations, and behavior notes in animal care software as needed. Ensure kennel cards and shared kennel map are kept up to date.
  • Work within budgets as directed by the NKLA Pet Adoption Center Manager and senior leadership. Assist NKLA Administrative Specialist in maintaining inventory of all pet caregiving department supplies, and collaborate for ordering needs.
  • Work with Volunteer Department to recruit volunteer support, and create/provide training through the staff & volunteer leads for new volunteers to fulfill volunteer roles. Additionally, work with volunteer department to identify most in-need shifts for volunteer staffing & program needs as well as volunteer recruitment.
  • Assist the public with providing information on the pets and help potential adopters with "Meet 'n Greets."
  • Work positively with adoption team to promote pets to potential adopters.
  • Maintain inventory of all pet food, medical supplies, dry storage and cleaning supplies as well as daily pet population inventories.  
  • Report all maintenance/repair issues to manager.
  • Other duties as assigned by the NKLA Pet Adoption Center Manager and senior leadership.

Additional Duties:

  • Facilitate the complete adoption process including full counseling and clerking duties according to Best Friends' standards and philosophy to include but not limited to: surveys, checklists, agreements, medical records, health certificates, adoption follow-ups, written correspondence, email, and phone calls.  
  • In the absence of the Lead Adoption Specialist, ensure that adoption specialists are on task, providing quality client service, and maintaining lunch breaks and productivity.
  • Perform and oversee the answering of client inquiries including but not limited to: answering the phone and basic questions from the public and appropriately directing calls to other team members when relevant, checking voice mail messages and overseeing call backs and information is delivered to appropriate staff as well as respond to general email inquiries.

Required skills and experience:

  • Experience interacting with the general public and excellent interpersonal skills strongly preferred.
  • 3 years of customer service experience, 2 years of management/team leading experience, and/or adoption counseling experience strongly preferred.
  • Strong leadership skills with the ability to act decisively in difficult and fast-paced situations.
  • Must be able to work with all dogs and cats, including those with health concerns/conditions as well as behavior conditions.
  • Ability to work independently and use judgement within established guidelines.
  • Must be able to administer animal vaccinations and microchips, as needed during intake process.
  • Must have the ability to make decisions on behalf of the organization and in partnership with NKLA Coalition Partners to maintain intake standards for animal admissions approval, and approval of animals into adoptive homes.
  • Strong interpersonal skills to handle sensitive and confidential situations.
  • The ideal person for this job would be a team player, positive, personable, upbeat, energetic, takes initiative, and uses tact and diplomacy. Resourceful, roll up the sleeves attitude. The successful candidate must have the initiative to resolve problems and seek answers independently and enthusiastically and demonstrate flexibility to persist until goals are achieved. Knowledgeable of general pet care and characteristics of animals.
  • Must be able to work in a fast-paced environment with demonstrated ability to juggle multiple competing tasks and demands.
  • Computer literate in: Microsoft Office, (Office 365, Sharepoint, and One Drive experience highly preferred), using the Internet and social media platforms, knowledge of animal care shelter software, ShelterLuv specifically preferred.
  • Ability to professionally advocate Best Friends' position on issues.
  • Bilingual in English and Spanish preferred.

Physical Requirements:

  • Must be able to routinely lift 65 pounds.
  • Must be able to perform strenuous physical activity on a daily basis, including, but not limited to: lifting and carrying, reaching, climbing ladders, stooping, squatting, cleaning and bending.
  • Valid driver's license with access to transportation to travel on organization business.
  • Ability to effectively interact with and handle all cats and dogs at the facility.
  • Work at a computer for extended periods of time with repetitive typing, arm and hand motion.
  • Work indoors and outdoors in a variety of weather conditions.
  • Standing and walking for long periods of time throughout the day.
  • Long exposure on a daily basis to cats of all temperaments and medical conditions.
  • Daily hours and days of the week may vary according to the needs of the department schedule: includes weekends, night, on-call and holiday work.  


Thank you for your interest in pursuing a career at Best Friends Animal Society.  Best Friends Animal Society is an equal opportunity employer.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, marital status, domestic partner status, or medical condition.

We will consider for employment all qualified Applicants, including those with Criminal Histories, in a manner consistent with the requirements of applicable state and local laws, including the City of Los Angeles' Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring Ordinance.


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