Critter Camp

Houston SPCA’s Critter Camp is the only place for kids to learn and explore behind the scenes of the rescue, care and science of animals at one of the leading animal protection and rescue organizations in the country.  Both weekly and daily camps are available during the spring, summer and winter breaks and is for students entering 3rd – 10th grade.

You Can Register for SUMMER Critter Camp HERE!

Would you like a sneak peak on what's to come or find out what your camper is up to during Critter Camp? Check us out on Facebook or Instagram!

Applications for Summer Critter Crew are closed.  We will accept applications in November 2019 for our upcoming Winter Critter Camp Crew! Critter Camp Crew members are very important, as they help facilitate our campers throughout the winter session.

Applications for the Papa John’s Houston Critter Camp Scholarship is now closed for the summer session.  We look forward to accepting applications next year starting in April 2020. Thank you

Summer Critter Camp Information

Week 1: Junior Vet Camp: June 3 -7

(Grades 3-4)

Does your little one want to be a vet? If so, join us for a fun-filled week of animal education! We will learn about veterinary animal examination, animal body language, pet nutrition, caring for injured wildlife, and preparing for pet emergencies and illnesses with our CPR dog models.


Week 2: Vet Camp: June 10 - 14

(Grades 5-7)

Why wait to practice veterinary skills when you can start now? Come learn all about the fascinating animal anatomy, assessing the health of an animal using veterinary tools, and ensuring the safety of your pets around your home and in emergencies.


Week 3: Advanced Vet Camp: June 17-21

(Grades 8-10)

If you are considering choosing a career path in animal care, have we got a week for you! You are invited to join us as we learn about animal anatomy and diseases, as well as splinting and suturing! Our Advanced Vet Campers will benefit from the use of injured animal replicas to help them practice their veterinary skills.


Week 4: Junior Pet Pals: June 24-28


(Grades 3-4)

Do you have a little animal lover? We want all of our animal loving friends to learn what it takes to really care for our pet pals such as behavior training, the cost of pet care, pet safety, and the habitats our animals need. 


Week 5: Service Days: Single Day Registration: July 1, 2, 3


(Grades 3-8)

Does your child want to volunteer with the Houston SPCA, but he or she doesn’t quite meet the age requirements? Join us for a day of service to the animals in our care as we invite all of our young volunteers at heart to help out around our animal adoption center under the careful supervision of our teachers and camp counselors. Camp space will be limited to 20 students for these days to ensure a safe and interactive environment for all participants.


Week 6: Pet Pals: July 8-12

(Grades 5-7)

Attention all animal lovers! We need you to help us spread the word about humane education! Proper pet care is the key to a happy animal, so come learn about behavior training, microchip scanning, habitats, preparing for emergencies with our CPR dog models, and other activities that keep our animals safe and loved.


Week 7: Animal Rescuers: July 15-19

(Grades 5-7)

When an animal is in trouble who will be there on the double? Our Animal Rescuers! Learn to be a voice for the voiceless as we explore important issues like pet overpopulation, animal cruelty, preventable diseases, and homelessness.  We’ll show our Animal Rescuers how to be a Champion For Animals.


Week 8: Advanced Animal Rescuers: July 22-26

(Grades 8-10)

A passion for animals and their care is a trait that is shared among members of the Houston SPCA animal rescue team.  If you would like to cultivate that passion, join us for advanced animal rescue! During this week, campers will have the opportunity to try out the skills and tools used by our own cruelty investigators and ambulance rescue drivers.


Week 9: Junior Vet Camp: July 29-August 2 **Repeat Week**

(Grades 3-4)

Does your little one want to be a vet? If so, join us for a fun-filled week of animal education! We will learn about veterinary animal examination, animal body language, pet nutrition, caring for injured wildlife, and preparing for pet emergencies and illnesses with our CPR dog models.


Week 10: Vet Camp: August 5-9 **Repeat Week**

(Grades 5-7)

Critter Camp FAQ's

What are the camp hours?

Camp runs from 9 AM to 3 PM each day. We also offer early drop off at 7:45 AM and late pick up at 4 PM for an additional cost.

What is the cost of camp?

Weeklong camps are $275 per week. Early drop off and late pickup are additional $5 per day each.

Where is the camp located?

Critter Camp is located at the Houston SPCA's Carruth Education Center located at 7007 Old Katy Road, Houston, TX 77024.

What do campers do at Critter Camp each day?

Critter Camp is an educational camp designed for children with a passion for animals. Campers who attend Critter Camp can expect to learn about proper pet care, animal advocacy, and veterinary skills. Each day, campers will engage in lessons that explore topics related to animal welfare, do activities to help reinforce those lessons, play animal inspired games, create crafts for themselves and for the animals, and, of course, join their groups in spending time with some of our adoptable animals.

What should my camper wear?

Campers are REQUIRED to wear long pants and closed toed shoes to protect their legs and feet during animal interactions. Campers are encouraged to bring a light sweater as the camp room can be cold.

How much time will my camper spend outside?

Campers will walk under the covered walkways in between buildings on our campus and may visit an animal outside for as long as 20 minutes. All other activities are held indoors.

What should my camper bring?

Your camper is REQUIRED to bring a lunch and water bottle. They are also encouraged to bring a light sweater. Campers may bring electronic devices, but they will only be permitted to use them before camp, after camp and during lunch.

Will snacks be provided?

Yes. An afternoon snack will be provided for each camper. However, you are certainly welcome to pack an additional snack for your camper

How much time will my camper spend with animals each day?

Our campers will participate in animal interactions each day. In groups of no more than 20, campers will spend 1 ½ hours visiting with a large dog, a small dog, and a cat chosen from our adoptable animals (30 minutes each).

Are there scholarships available?

Yes. Limited scholarships are available for weeklong camps only. Scholarship applications are made available to interested families in April of each year.

Do you offer discounts?

Yes. We offer multi-day discounts at $5 for each additional day added during day camps. We also offer a $25 sibling discount for weeklong camps.

When is Critter Camp available?

Camp is offered during Spring Break, Summer, and Winter Break with the HISD calendar.

Can Critter Camp come to my Rec Center, YMCA, or Day Care?

Houston SPCA Critter Camp is an exclusive educational program offered only at the Houston SPCA. For other visits outside of designated Critter Camp times, check out our education program guide!

Do you offer internships for older kids who want to help out?

Please email for more information about joining the Critter Crew team!

For more information, to ask questions or to see your campers having fun during camp, follow Critter Camp on:

Due to the high demand for camp spaces, all sales are considered final. Patrons who provide a written notice of cancellation to two weeks prior to the first day of their scheduled camp session will receive a 50% refund. No refunds will be issued after this cutoff, including participants who miss all or partial programs due to illness. The Houston SPCA reserves the right to cancel any program due to minimum enrollment, inclement weather or unforeseen circumstances, in which case a full refund will be issued. Cancellations are official upon receipt of confirmation from the Houston SPCA.


Support the Houston SPCA

Intervening on behalf of nearly 50,000 animals in need each year is an expensive endeavor, and your generous donation today will help further our mission. Donating to the Houston SPCA is an investment in your community because your entire donation is used locally to benefit the animals of our area.

Donate Today

Thank you to our sponsors and donors.

 Hill's Logo.png FSL-Bowl-Final-RGB_LR.pngHills_Master_SD_logo_RGB_®.jpg2016 VCA-Logo-RGB-High.jpg   Charity Navigator Logo   2016 BBB Seal   BBB Winner of Distinction 2018-HoustonSPCA1.jpg