Animal shelters provide an invaluable service for animals in need, providing them with food, shelter, medical care and love. Many shelters operate with limited resources, doing their best to care for a population of needy animals that almost seems endless.
National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week was created to honor the hardworking staff and volunteers who spend their lives helping homeless pets and inspire pet lovers to get involved with their local shelter or rescue. Need some ideas of how you can help? Here are a few of our favorites!
Volunteer your time. Socializing shelter pets helps them become better equipped to transition from shelter life to their new homes. Spend an afternoon playing with cats or walking dogs. Many shelters need more advanced helpers to work with canines in obedience classes as well.
Organize an event. Make your local shelter a cause for celebration! Throw a themed party, set up a bake sale, or parade your pet in a dog walk and donate the proceeds to your shelter. You’ll raise awareness, meet new animal-loving friends and help homeless pets.
Go shopping or get crafty! Besides monetary donations, shelters are in constant need of basic supplies that can be found at your local grocery or discount store like food, cleaning supplies, toys and other pet care supplies. Call your shelter and ask what they need most and what brands they use before you take your shopping trip for the cause. You can also make some catnip toys to keep boredom at bay—they’re easy to make and kid-friendly!