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Ways to Help at Animal Shelters

4 Ways You Can Help Shelters (Other Than Donations)

Despite how much we may all want to help our local animal shelters, we don't all have the spare cash laying around to do so. However, the good news is that there are other ways to help your shelters without shelling out cash donations, and the ideas we've come up with are way more fun than just writing a check.

  • Dog walkers: Use extra time and get extra exercise by offering your talents as a dog walker on weekends or around your work schedule.
  • Foster homes: New kittens and puppies may need special one-on-one care so offer to help with the potty and litterbox training for a new babe — you may just fall in love in the process.
  • Cleaning staff: Someone's got to keep those kennels spotless — find out if you can help out either tidying up or bringing in supplies for weekend or holiday clean fests.
  • Adoption drives: See if the shelter is holding any special events where you could volunteer your time, playing with and showing off cute, available faces to potential owners.
Image Source: Flickr user klearchos
starbucks2 starbucks2 8 years
That's awesome running. I don't think I could handle giving up those kittens later. I'd probably become the crazy at lady that way ;) I want to volunteer again when my daughter's a little older. My dog love going to the shelter because there are so many friendly dogs to run around with.
runningesq runningesq 8 years
LOVE my local shelter! My husband and I volunteer once a week as "cat cuddlers" -- we play with the cats, pet them, hold them (if they will tolerate it ;)), and introduce them to prospective families. And, like Yoga said, you can speak truthfully about the animals. I once had a couple that was looking for a cuddly lap cat, and rememember one I was holding that morning that would not be put down.. they fell in love ! We also foster kittens -- from about 4 weeks to 8-10 weeks old. We fatten 'em up, play with them, show them toys, etc. - help them become "pets" by socializing them. Very sadly, our last two died from panlukipenia (like parvo, but for kittens)... but still, we've housed, total, about 40-50 kittens :)
starofsorrow starofsorrow 8 years
I used to volunteer at a shelter, and I loved doing it! I'm actually considering volunteering at the local shelters again, since I kinda miss that, and I enjoy interaction with different breeds and such.
Yogaforlife Yogaforlife 8 years
I love volunteering at the shelter. You really get to know the animals when you walk them regularly, so that you can speak truthfully and positively about the animal's temperament to potential adopters. I can't count how many times it has helped the shy dogs find homes since they're not outgoing enough to display their wonderful qualities to strangers on the other side of the fence. Also, a lot of shelters need people who are familiar with training that can teach dogs basic commands. You don't have to have too much experience to volunteer as a trainer, I train my dogs in agility/rally and that was enough to qualify me for training shelter dogs. A dog that knows "sit", "stay", "heel", "down" will find a home a lot faster than a dog who has no training and jumps up on people.
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