How to Help an Animal Shelter

Animal shelters are great organizations that save defenseless animals. However, lots of animals go into shelters each year, and not enough come out. Helping them can be very rewarding, and you will feel like a hero.


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    Adopt. Animal shelters are always looking for people to adopt the animals they rescue. So instead of buying your dog from a breeder, adopt an equally loving dog from the shelter. Never buy a dog from a pet store, and encourage others to do the same. Those dogs typically come from puppy mills: where dogs are bred with no concern for their health. If you don't want to adopt from a shelter, at least go to a good breeder.
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    Animal shelters don't have a lot of money, so anything you can do to help is great. Volunteering positions include helping with adoption events, cleaning, doing paperwork, and walking the dogs. If you want to volunteer but for some physical reason you are not up to these activities, most shelters have a cat socializing position!
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    Raise money for an animal shelter on Facebook. It's an easy and effective way to raise money for pets online. Especially, if the shelter has a strong community (followers) on Facebook. There are fundraising platforms that were built for Facebook. They have apps that allow the shelter to add a "Give tab" to its facebook page and people can donate to a cause without leaving Facebook. Platforms, like Fundraiser, have a deep Facebook integration that sends all campaign's activities such as donations, story updates, comments to the news feed of donors and their friends. That's how the shelter reaches more people, builds awareness and raises more money for animals.
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    Raise money with a fundraiser.Hold car washes, set up a collection, sell jewelry or lemonade. Do something to raise money for the shelter. It's hard to believe, but $100 can be the difference between an animal's life or death.
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    Donate: Look for household items that you think will help. Normally, an animal shelter has a website that will show a wish list. Donate blankets, pet food, collars, leashes, toys, towels, office items, and many more!
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    Make a donation bin. Put out a box at work or school asking people for gently used pet supplies, in addition to whatever else was on the wish list.
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    Become a photographer. Volunteer to take pictures of pets up for adoption. If people see an interesting picture they will be more interested in adopting the animal.
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    Get a group of friends together and make various sizes of brightly colored bandannas. A dog wearing a bandanna will jump out at people.
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    Get your dog/cat neutered or spayed. You can help control the overpopulation of dogs and cats.
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    Click on the advertisements. If the shelter has a website, click on the advertisements. Ads usually pay the website per click. So, if you are really bored and want to help a shelter, go to their website and click as many ads as possible. You can make them money!
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    Build a website. Help your shelter enter the digital age by going online! Being online is a tremendous advantage when looking for publicity. If you are techie, build a website for a shelter.


  • Visit the shelter's website to see what else you can do.
  • Ask friends to join you. The more the merrier!
  • If you choose to take pictures of the animals, you will likely be spending time with them. Write a nice description afterwards to put with the photo.

Article Info

Categories: Volunteer and Community Service