Where would we be without animal rescue, or animal shelters in our society? These organizations are truly inspiring and amazing, and they do so much with so little. There are an untold number of animals who now have families because of these places.
But what happens when you want to help, but are unable to adopt a pet? Perhaps you live in an apartment or rental home that doesn’t allow animals. Perhaps you love animals but are extremely allergic to their dander. Don’t worry, we have a solution just for you. Keep reading for more information.
Donate Money Directly To A Shelter Of Your Choice
While of course, an animal shelter can always use a truck load of dog food, or cat litter, sometimes they have animals who need special diets or need care from veterinarians.
A financial donation goes much farther when donated directly to the organization of your choice. Additionally, that donation goes directly to the specific things that the organization needs the most.
If you are wanting to help an animal shelter without adopting, consider donating money directly to the shelter, it will be more than welcomed, and gratefully accepted. If you don’t know which shelter to choose, try using the internet to find one close to your home.
No one knows more about what the shelter needs than the owners or managers themselves.
Volunteer At An Event, Or Become A Regular With Your Talents
Okay, this may not be an option if you have allergies, but it is certainly an option if you want to adopt but don’t have the space necessary to help. Also, there are a lot of volunteer activities that don’t require being with the animals.
There are awareness campaigns, where you can help by manning a booth at a local event, or perhaps your talent lies in marketing?
Literally any skill that you have can help a shelter.
If you don’t know what skills you have that can help, try talking to your local shelter and seeing what they need help with.
Bake A Cake, Or Buy Pizza, Sometimes Social Media
There are a lot of people who work at the shelter who don’t exactly do it for the money.
It is so nice to be appreciated, so if you have a moment to drop off some cookies or buy some pizza for the staff to say “thank you.”
Then you can remind the people at the shelter just how appreciated they are.
Another thing that helps, especially if you have a few followers, is to occasionally give the shelter of your choice a shout-out on social media. Tag them in a post or thank them publicly and see if you can’t get more people involved.
If Wishes Were Fishes
Some shelters have wish lists on their website. If yours doesn’t you can volunteer to create an amazon wish list and distribute it among friends, family, and mom groups. Perhaps you could even get a kids group involved in helping to raise money for items on the wish list.
Additionally, a great way to get kids involved is to pick some items off of a wish list that can be made out of recyclable materials. Perhaps do a “sheet drive” and teach kiddos how to sew cage curtains out of old sheets.
Foster A Pet
If your problem isn’t space, and it isn’t allergies, perhaps you just don’t want to commit to a single animal.
In this instance, maybe becoming a foster is more your style. Fostering a pet is rewarding and helps ensure that recovering pets have the time they need to restore their health and be adopted instead of being put down.
Pet Fosters can be lifesavers for kittens who need to be nursed back to health, or pups that have survived all the odds. Additionally, fosters are able to help with the adoption process and are the backbone of many shelters.
As an adoption ambassador, you can not just help one animal be rescued, but many.
Keep Your Own Animals Safe
One thing that definitely helps shelters is making sure that animals that don’t belong there never end up there.
This means making sure that your pets have their ID tags, collars, and microchips. This way, if your 4-legged fur-baby gets scooped up by a good Samaritan, and brings it to the shelter, it is as simple as a scan, and you are contacted to bring your best friend back home.
Also, consider having all of your pets spayed or neutered so that you don’t accidentally end up with a litter of puppies or kittens that you need to take care of.
Lastly, consider keeping your cat indoors, or providing them with a safe place outside to play where they won’t get mistaken for a stray. There are some pretty amazing “catios” out there that do exactly that.
Advocate and Donate
If you are a part of another non-profit group, perhaps consider supporting your shelter by advocating for a special circumstance, like a much-needed medical machine that your shelter needs. Another way to advocate is to help advertise to the community any animals that are up for adoption.
Lastly you can post photos online or donate supplies.
We do food drives all the time, why not do a “shelter food drive” for your favorite shelter?
Get the whole community, schools, and other organizations involved, and volunteer to pick up any donated supplies on a certain date.
With over 6.5 million pets entering shelters nationwide each year, at-risk animals need your help. There are so many ways to contribute that don’t require adoption.
If you find that you are better at helping to replace lightbulbs or building websites than you are at being a pet-owner, than there are shelters out there that need your talent.
From simply posting information on your social media about your local shelter, to organizing events that get shelters what they need, you can make a difference. If you are drawing on your own support group, your difference can become a huge impact, that helps hundreds of local animals.
Each shelter has a different purpose and different capabilities, so make sure you support one that holds the most meaning to you.
Either way, the suggestions provided on this list should help you decide on a commitment that is right for you and the amount of time you have to contribute.
Each act that provides awareness to a shelter, or the animals in that shelter, means more rescues.
Your contribution helps the number of pets in shelters get lower each year.