Daily Workflow & Work Protocols

The following info covers how we work at the Every Dog Matters EU shelter on a daily basis, including our highest priority tasks for the day.

If you have any questions about details that are not clear here, please contact Sabine (in our shared Workaway Whatsapp group) or Terry (he is in the Whatsapp group too).

Daily Routine

– we normally start at 8 am and finish around 4.30 pm (train delays may make this vary a little).

– upon arrival, individual permanent staff and Workaway volunteers do their tasks assigned previously e.g. cleaning the office (sweeping both containers + cleaning up any toilet misadventures from Kaya, our office dog), cleaning the cat cage + adding food and water for cats, feeding dogs in little street from Red’s yard to Jerry’s yard at end, feeding/watering + poo picking in Roaming Area (these tasks are usually finished between 9.30 am – 10am).

When staff are sick or on days off, those staff delegate their assigned tasks to someone who will be working and Sabine, our Site Manager, must be informed about task delegation.

– when the above tasks are completed, we then leash Main Street dogs in preparation for the main feeding (once a day).

Depending on medical issues, a small number of dogs will receive a 2nd feeding each day but most get 1 feeding per day.

If main feeding has started around 10 am to 10.30 am, this should finish around 12.30 but should not be rushed.

During the main feeding, water pools are cleaned or replaced, water is changed and refilled as well and any broken wooden pallets on fences should be reported to Sabine for fixing.

After the main feeding, we have lunch for 45 minutes.

During lunch, Flo and/or Marli assign tasks for the afternoon such as Winter room cleaning, Recovery cleaning, medicine for specific dogs, lunch room floor sweeping, specific dogs for walking e.g. Suzi, office road swept once a week.

At the end of the day, Flo and/or Marli will check that assigned tasks have been done.

By 4.30 pm, we then aim to complete all necessary work + building and gate locking, Granny in a cage in the laundry room, any completed washing hung out to dry inside Building 11 and Kaya and Godzilla out for toilet before being locked in containers for the evening.

During Feeding

Food aggression is very common in a shelter environment so we are always managing that, so:

– do NOT touch the bowls of the dogs while they are feeding

– give the dogs plenty of personal space while they are eating (NOT a time for patting dogs)

– if a dog does not have an appetite, this should be reported immediately to Marli, Flo or Sabine

– dogs must be unleashed after feeding and not left too long, especially in summer when dogs can overheat without shade

During Poo Picking In Yards

Poo picking in yards is not the most glamorous job at the shelter but is vital for keep our dogs in a clean, healthy environment.


When you are in a dog yard doing poo-picking, please also remove any obvious rubbish in the yard too (that should go to our main blue rubbish container and not mixed in with the poo) e.g.

And be observant for any wood laying around as often this has nails sticking up that could injure our dogs e.g.

– check if any drinking water needs refilling

– some dogs love to eat collected poo from the wheelbarrow so that is best left outside during poo picking

– check for diarrhea and report that to Marli, Flo or Sabine

During Dog Walking

– dogs from different yards should never be allowed to meet while on walks (this can cause fights)

– dogs from the same yard should not be allowed to meet either because if one finds a ‘treasure’ such as a dead mouse, they may attack the other dog

– always have a spare leash in case a collar or leash breaks and you need a backup on the walk

– if you see approaching homeless dogs, stand your ground, don’t move away and vocally discourage them from approaching (yell at them)

– you should not walk so far that you get close to farm buildings outside as they have dogs guarding them

– walks must ONLY be taken by turning RIGHT at the end of Main Street as turning left will bring you in range of loose dogs from a nearby shelter

When In Recovery Rooms

– when opening the door of Recovery, it is very likely that 1 or more digs will be behind the door and try escape when you open the door, expect that and do NOT let them out

– Linus is a fearful dog who lives in Recovery so try to keep calm and quiet when in Recovery

When In Quarantine (Building 10)

– plastic shoe covers AND plastic gloves MUST be worn Quarantine

When In Winter Rooms

– check instructions on the whiteboard for specific tasks that are needed for each winter room

– if a dog in a winter room is fearful, do NOT approach them and try to pat them. Instead, ignore them completely and carry out the necessary tasks and leave (always give the dog the choice to approach you or not, don’t take that away from them)