There are a variety of ways you can help the homeless animals who are awaiting rescue at your local animal shelter.
Of course, one of the greatest things you can do is to donate money. The funds you give are available to be spent as needed, be it on food, medical care, or advertising the pet’s availability.
Another is to volunteer. Volunteers are the backbone of any rescue program or animal shelter. Volunteers can transport animals to veterinary appointments, can bathe, groom, clean cages, socialize animals and the like. All that is needed is a heart full of kindness and general, basic skill with animals.
Yet another way to contribute is to donate needed items, such as leashes, collars, crates, towels, blankets, food, toys and grooming products. Most shelters have a never ending need for such items.
Finally, consider donating your time. People are frequently needed to help transport animals via canine “underground railroads” to their eventually forever homes. You might wish to foster a dog or cat until a forever home can be found. Doing so acclimates the animal to a “normal” home environment while simultaneously freeing space for another animal to be rescued. Simply caring enough to provide the next most needed thing is sometimes all that is necessary to save a worthy animal’s life.
Donate old towels or blankets
The old towels and blankets in the back of your linen closet, the ones that you might take to Goodwill, or might just stuff in the trash, are likely a godsend to your local animal shelter. Shelters have a never ending need for dry towels and blankets that will serve as bedding for the homeless dogs who find themselves in need.
This item does require financial expenditure, but it need not be pocketbook breaking. All that it requires is that, as you’re doing your weekly grocery shopping, that you pick up a bag of whatever quality dog food happens to be on sale that week, and drop it by the shelter. Over the course of 52 weeks in a year, this adds up to quite a number of hungry dogs fed.
This contribution is absolutely cost free. Feature that precious little kitten or puppy face on your blog for a day, or on your Facebook page. It only takes a minute, yet then all of your friends and relatives will be able to see the animal in need of a home. You never know who might just be looking for a new pet to share their home!
In this digitial era, rare is the person who does not have a decent digital camera and, let’s face it, with the instant feedback and auto-focus that they provide, you don’t even need to really know how to use it! If you have such a camera, consider sharing your blessing with those less fortunate, and using it to photograph the shelter inmates on a regular basis and provide the photos to the staff to use as adoption photos on Petfinder.
Shelter dogs are frequently afraid and uncertain. Some have never had proper socialization while others simply do not know whether they should trust in their current environment, or not. By volunteering to pet, walk, talk to, groom, etc. the dogs and cats in the shelter, you are contributing greatly to their ability to adapt to their new homes to come.