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Have you always wanted a career working with animals? Are you genuinely passionate about animal well-being? Would you like to share your knowledge to educate others? Our vision is to one day live in a world where all animals are respected and treated with compassion and that is what we work towards every day. 

We are excited to be recruiting for our next intake of Animal Rescue Officers (ARO) and currently have multiple openings across England and Wales.

You don't need to have previous animal handling experience. We are keen to hear from anyone who shares our values and wants to create a world that's kinder to animals. Full training will be provided across a number of weeks. 

We can offer you:

  • Great Annual Leave benefits - 25 days annual leave on joining increasing each year to a maximum of 31 days (pro rata for part-time)
  • Generous pension scheme 
  • Career development through our in-house Learning & Development training 
  • Charity worker discounts: Access to hundreds of discounts across many retailers, travel, insurance & cinema tickets.

We have attached a fact sheet detailing regularly asked questions to bring the role to life, we highly recommended reading through before applying.

What is it all about?

As an ARO you will be a vital front-line worker, alleviating animal suffering by responding to alleged reports of animal cruelty, neglect or injury, and collecting and rescuing sick, injured or stranded animals before taking them to a place of safety.  There really is no better feeling than knowing you've made a real difference in the lives of animals (and owners).

The role is very rewarding but also challenging and often emotionally stressful at the same time. You will be dealing with difficult situations, so will need the ability to stay calm, professional and focused, whilst resilient. Your genuine love for animals and sense of duty will keep you motivated.  

For a full insight into this role please refer to the attached job description. Are you ready to come and join us?

What makes a great Animal Rescue Officer?
  • You need to be 17 or over to apply, and 18 by the time you start the course.
  • You must be available to start working on the 25th November 2024 and be fully available for a 19 week intensive training period, during which you may not be able to take annual leave.
  • The 19 week training period will entail visits to multiple training locations across the country, so it is important that you are free to travel during this period, including occasional overnight stays.
  • The role does involve a lot of driving so you need a full manual driver's licence and be comfortable driving long distances in a manual van.
  • Ideally, you have a Level 2 qualification in English Language at GCSE grade C or above, or Grades 4 to 9.

Please note: to be eligible to apply you must live in the following postcode areas: 

  • DT1 to DT3
  • DT10 & DT11

For more details or any assistance please contact

What else do I need to know?
  • The role will include euthanising animals when necessary, please consider this carefully before applying
  • Across a 35 hour week, this role involves working shifts, including some unsocial hours to include evenings, weekends and Bank Holidays
  • Appointed candidates will be required to attend an occupational health and functional assessment to determine your suitability for the needs of the role

If successful after application the recruitment process will consist of the following:

You will be invited to attend a mandatory ‘awareness session' where we provide valuable information about the role on either 02nd July or 04th July. The awareness session will include guest speakers talking about key aspects and challenges of the role, the sessions are held in the evenings from 5.30pm to 7.30pm.

Once you have attended the awareness session you will be invited to a first stage on-line group assessments full information is provided ahead of the sessions. The assessments will be scheduled between 08th - 26th July

 If you are successful through our assessment stage you will be invited to a virtual panel based interview between 29th July - 16th August with one of our Chief Inspectors and a member of our People & Culture team. This is a great opportunity for us to chat further about your skills, experience and interest in this role through competency based questions and share further insight into what life at RSPCA looks like. 

Remember to really bring your skills to life on the application form in terms of your animal management skills and why you'd be a great new team member. This is a popular role so are you ready to let us know why you stand out above others?


Final note from us & good luck with your application!

We are really lucky that some of our roles attract a high level of interest and for this reason we review applications as they are received, unfortunately on some occasions this means roles may close earlier than advertised; so early submissions are highly recommended.

We do try to give feedback where we can to ensure the best candidate experience, but sometimes due to receiving high levels of applications, this may not always be possible

We recognise that a diverse and inclusive workforce is essential to achieving our core mission. For this reason we actively encourage a wide diversity of applications - in particular from members of minority ethnic groups, and people with disabilities - as these candidates are currently under-represented at the RSPCA.

Should you need any support with your application or interview process please contact

Our mission is to ensure animals have a good life by rescuing and caring for those in need, by advocating on behalf of all animals and by inspiring everyone to treat them with compassion and respect



Professional development

35 hour working week (full time)

25 days holiday

Family friendly policies

Pension scheme

Healthcare cash plan

Employee Assistance Programme

Occupational sick pay

Life assurance

Dog friendly policies

Cycle to work scheme

Discount schemes

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  • Salary:
    £24,415 + 4% Shift Allowance
  • Location type:
    Field worker
  • Location:
    Dorchester, Weymouth, Sturminster Newton, Blandford Forum
  • Vacancy type :
  • Closing Date:
    23 June 2024
  • Hours per week:
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