Spring break, summer and winter breaks are magical times at Animal Friends, with fun and educational camp experiences for young people.  Throughout the year, we offer daytime camps for animal-loving youths of all ages – from preschoolers with a caregiver to teens seeking a deep-dive into animal welfare.

Our Campers and Apprentices

Grade levels listed below indicate the camper’s or apprentice’s grade as of the spring of 2024. Youths must be registered for the appropriate camp based upon the grade they complete in the spring of 2024. We do not register youths outside of their grade level except to accommodate neurovariance. If this applies to your child, please contact us before registering.  For the safety of the children and animals, all campers or apprentices must be able to follow verbal directions or be accompanied by an adult assistant. 

Animal Friends’ camps are not appropriate for students who are allergic to or fearful of dogs, cats or rabbits. Animal Friends is nota nut-free facility.   

Campers and apprentices in three-hour camps are encouraged to bring a light non-perishable snack and a refillable water bottle to camp each day. 

We do not provide any pre- or post-camp childcare for our campers or apprentices. Drop-off is ten minutes before the start time listed for the camp session. Pick-up should be within ten minutes of the end time of the camp session.  Caregivers will be invited to a special Show What You Know presentation for campers or a Recognition Ceremony for apprentices during the last 15 minutes of camp each Friday. 

Online Registration

Registration for camp must be completed online. We are unable to accept paper or walk-in registrations. We accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and PayPal. 

Due to parental permission slips and required medical information, only the parent or legal guardian of the camper may complete the registration process. 

Our camps sell out quickly!

Before registering, please scroll down this page to be sure the camp of your choosing is not already sold out. If you would like your name added to a wait list for a sold out camp, please provide your name, phone number and the specific name of the camp you are interested in attending, in an email to Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org.

Registration Confirmation Email

Once online registration is complete for a particular camp, you will receive a confirmation email shortly thereafter.  If you do not receive the confirmation email, please contact Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org. Approximately one week prior to the start of camp, you will receive a reminder email.

Camp Cancellation Policy

To receive a refund for camp, the refund request must be received no later than one month prior to the start date of the registered camp. Refund requests should be sent to Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org. Refund requests received after that date will not be accepted, and the tuition will be considered a donation to Animal Friends.

2024 Summer Camps

All registered summer campers and apprentices are invited to drop by Animals Friends on Thursday, June 13th OR Friday, June 14th from 10 a.m. -2 p.m. during the “Countdown to Camps” open house.

Learn the lay of the land at the Caryl Gates Gluck Resource Center, including seeing the camp classroom, peeking in at the Humane Education & Engagement Center, and strolling through the Adoption Floor.

Additionally, Summer Camp T-shirt orders will be available for pick up.  More information about T-shirts is provided at the time of registration.  T-shirt orders not picked up ahead of time will be distributed on the first day of camp.

Our Campers and Apprentices

Grade levels listed below indicate the camper’s or apprentice’s grade as of the spring of 2024. Youths must be registered for the appropriate camp based upon the grade they complete in the spring of 2024. We do not register youths outside of their grade level except to accommodate neurovariance. If this applies to your child, please contact us before registering.  For the safety of the children and animals, all campers or apprentices must be able to follow verbal directions or be accompanied by an adult assistant.

Animal Friends’ camps are not appropriate for students who are allergic to or fearful of dogs, cats or rabbits. Animal Friends is not a nut-free facility.

Campers and apprentices in three-hour camps are encouraged to bring a light non-perishable snack and a refillable water bottle to camp each day.

We do not provide any pre- or post-camp childcare for our campers or apprentices. Drop-off is ten minutes before the start time listed for the camp session. Pick-up should be within ten minutes of the end time of the camp session.  Caregivers will be invited to a special Show What You Know presentation for campers or a Recognition Ceremony for apprentices during the last 15 minutes of camp each Friday.

Online Registration

Registration for camp must be completed online. We are unable to accept paper or walk-in registrations. We accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and PayPal.

Due to parental permission slips and required medical information, only the parent or legal guardian of the camper may complete the registration process.

Our camps sell out quickly!

Before registering, please scroll down this page to be sure the camp of your choosing is not already sold out. If you would like your name added to a wait list for a sold out camp, please provide your name, phone number and the specific name of the camp you are interested in attending, in an email to Donna Klingelhofer, Animal Friends University, at DKlingelhofer@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org.

Confirmations

Once online registration is complete for a particular camp, you will receive a confirmation email shortly thereafter.  If you do not receive the confirmation email, please contact us at DKlingelhofer@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org. Approximately one week prior to the start of camp, you will receive a reminder email.

Camp Cancellation Policy

To receive a refund for camp, the refund request must be received no later than one month prior to the start date of the registered camp. Refund requests should be sent to Donna Klingelhofer at DKlingelhofer@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org or 412.847.7035. Refund requests received after that date will not be accepted, and the tuition will be considered a donation to Animal Friends.

If you would like to be placed on our wait list for a particular sold out camp session, please email Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org

Littlest Animal Friends

Recommended for youths ages 3-5 with a caregiver.

Nurture your child’s love of four-legged friends while engaging in animal-themed activities from story time to singing to artmaking. This special four-day experience will feature different activities daily, with visits from real-life furry friends along the way.  Little ones will experience how to safely meet and interact with dog, cat, and rabbit friends in a joyful and playful environment.

Note: facilitated activities 1:00pm-1:30pm, with the option of exploring the Adoption Floor and Humane Education & Engagement Center at your own pace immediately afterward.

Littlest Animal Friends Session 1

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 9-12 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.–1:30 pm

Tuition: $40 per child/adult pair (for all four days)

Littlest Animal Friends Session 2

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 30-August 2   Register

Time: 1:00 p.m.–1:30 pm

Tuition: $40 per child/adult pair (for all four days)

If you would like to be placed on our wait list for a particular sold out camp session, please email Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org

Critter Camp 

For learners in kindergarten or grade 1 in the spring of 2024.  This camp curriculum is based on grade completed, rather than age.

Our youngest campers will enjoy four consecutive days of fun activities and projects centered on cat, dog, and rabbit critter companions.  Through stories, artwork, hands-on activities, and animal interactions, campers will not only learn about the fascinating lives of pets but also how to care for and interact with them, while connecting with fellow campers, animal professionals, and a world where kindness is key!  We will provide a camp T-shirt that is to be worn each day. Critter Camp is limited to ten campers per session.

Instructor:
Brittany Winkowski

Critter Camp Session 1 

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | June 18-21 – Sold Out!

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Critter Camp Session 2

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 9-12 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Critter Camp Session 3

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 30–August 2 – Sold Out!

Time:  9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Critter Camp Session 4

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | August 13–16   Register

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

If you would like to be placed on our wait list for a particular sold out camp session, please email Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org

Camp Animal Friends 

For learners in grades 2-4 in the spring of 2024. This camp curriculum is based on grade completed, rather than age.

For the budding pet lover or tried-and-true animal enthusiast, this animal-centered program features projects, games, and activities all about cat, dog, and rabbit friends.  Campers will examine what it’s like to be a dog, cat, or rabbit while practicing safe animal interactions, digging into animal caregiving and enrichment, and learning all about the work of Animal Friends in the shelter and in the community.  We will provide a camp T-shirt that is to be worn each day. Camp Animal Friends is limited to twelve campers per session.

Instructors:
Tracy Tooch

Camp Animal Friends Session 1 

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | June 18-21 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Camp Animal Friends Session 2

Dates: Tuesday | July 2* – Sold Out!

Time:  9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $40

*NOTEthis is a one-day session due to the holidaytuition fee adjusted accordingly.

Camp Animal Friends Session 3

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 9-12 – Sold Out!

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Camp Animal Friends Session 4

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 16-19 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Camp Animal Friends Session 5

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 30–August 2 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Camp Animal Friends Session 6

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | August 13 – 16 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $155

If you would like to be placed on our wait list for a particular sold out camp session, please email Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org

Pets Plus 

For learners in grades 5-6 in the spring of 2024. This camp curriculum is based on grade completed, rather than age.

Pets Plus camp includes the most popular camp activities — hands-on time with dogs, cats and rabbits, collaboration with fellow campers, and putting animal safety into practice – plus the opportunities for behind-the-scenes peeks at Animal Friends, engaging with staff and special guests, and exploring the real responsibilities and rewards of caring for and speaking up for animals.  We will provide a camp T-shirt that is to be worn each day. Pets Plus is limited to 12 students per session.

Instructors:
Katie Devlin

Pets Plus Session 1 

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | June 25-28 – Sold Out!

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Pets Plus Session 2  

Dates: Tuesday | July 2* – Sold Out!

Time:  9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $40

*NOTEthis is a one-day session due to the holidaytuition fee adjusted accordingly.

Pets Plus Session 3 

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 16-19 – Sold Out!

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Pets Plus Session 4 

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | July 23-26 – Sold Out!

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

Pets Plus Session 5

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | August 6-9 – Sold Out!

Time: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Tuition: $155

If you would like to be placed on our wait list for a particular sold out camp session, please email Donna at AFU@ThinkingOutsideTheCage.org

Mini Apprenticeships 

Mini-Apprenticeships offer teens the opportunity to experience the professional world of animal caregiving and advocacy through hands-on encounters with pets and the professionals who care for them.  Teens who complete a Mini Apprenticeship will receive a certificate of completion and valuable career-readiness preparation.

We provide a T-shirt that is to be worn daily.  Apprentices are asked to wear closed-toed tennis shoes or sneakers, as apprentices wearing flip flops, sandals or open-back shoes will not be permitted to handle dogs.  Attendance each day is mandatory, and teens must be 13 by the first day of camp.

Canine Companions Mini Apprenticeship

For teens ages 13-17.
Whether you want to work with dogs as a career, wish to be the best friend possible for your dog at home, or plan to have a dog companion in the future, this mini-apprenticeship will align you with certified dog trainers, canine behavior specialists, veterinary professionals, and more – with plenty of interactions with a variety of dogs.  You will leave with real-world experience in dog care and training as well as a big-picture view of the interconnected worlds of humans and animals. Canine Companions is limited to 10 students per session.

Coach: Katie Devlin

Dates: Tuesday-Friday | June 25-28 – Sold Out!

Time:  1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $185

Animal Allies Mini Apprenticeship 

For teens ages 13-17.

Calling all future animal trainers, rescuers, caregivers, and veterinarians – join professionals who will guide you in experiencing animal-related careers firsthand.  Learn about how to meet, interact with, and care for companion animals while you experience a deep dive into the lifesaving work of the animal advocates at Animal Friends. Not only will you participate in tasks that benefit the shelter residents, but you will also leave with a deeper understanding of the animal-human relationship and how the health and wellbeing of all animals leads to a healthy, happier you.  Apprentices will have encounters with dogs, cats, and rabbits throughout the week. Animal Allies is limited to 10 students per session.

Coach: Katie Devlin

Dates: 
Tuesday-Friday | July 23-26 – Sold Out!

Time: 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

Tuition: $185