How to Help Shelter Animals
Want to pitch in at your local animal shelter but don't know how? LHJ spoke to Jennifer Bristol, director of operations at Animal Haven, a nonprofit organization that finds new homes for abandoned dogs and cats, about little ways you can make a difference in the lives of shelter animals. Shelters always need more volunteers, especially during the weekends when they're at their busiest.
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- Lend a hand at fund-raising and outreach events hosted by your local shelter. Common activities include greeting guests, setting up and breaking down tables, etc.
- Hold a supply drive or garage sale to benefit a shelter. If your kids want to get involved, they could set up a collection box at their school or ask their friends for donations instead of birthday presents.
- Assist with adoptions. Introduce people to the animals and answer their questions about owning a pet.
- Foster a dog or cat for a week.
- Walk dogs and pet cats.
- Bathe, groom, and feed animals.
- Postage stamps (uncancelled): Donated stamps are used to help send thank-you letters to donors, pay bills, and send grant applications.
- All-meat baby food (no onion powder): Dog and cats can eat baby food, but check the label: Onion powder can be toxic.
- Bath towels, sheets, blankets: Worn-down towels are perfect for drying animals after their baths, lining pet cages, and providing warm and comfy bedding.
- Goldenseal liquid extract (no alcohol): A natural antibacterial agent, goldenseal helps treat upper respiratory tract problems for cats that have feline leukemia virus (FELV) or feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV).
- Dye and fragrance-free detergent: Some cats and dogs are allergic to additives.
- Paper towels
- Canned cat and dog food
- Cat carriers/dog crates
- Dog/cat toys
- Dog leashes
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