September 21, 2011

Lending A Hand

Like loving our pets, volunteering can make us feel good inside. Now combine those two things and you are sure to feel really great, right?

According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, 5 to 7 million animals are entered into shelters every year. With those large numbers comes a huge opportunity for animal lovers to give back. Most shelters need volunteers to foster kittens, make the animals feel loved and help keep up with the day-to-day chores at the shelter. Here’s how you can help:

Most animal shelters and humane societies will have you fill out an application before you can start volunteering. Depending on the role you intend to fill as a volunteer they may also host an orientation for you to learn about their organization and practices.

Volunteer opportunities at many shelters include dog walkers and fosters.

With so many dogs in shelters it is hard for attendants to give each animal the attention they need to feel loved. Dog walkers allow the dogs to get out of their cages and have some human interaction, which they have been lacking. If you are an animal lover who is not in the position to own a pet just yet, this is the perfect way to spend quality time with dogs looking for love.

There are also plenty of opportunities to foster newborns. Usually kittens, but sometimes fosters are needed for puppies and other small animals. Being a foster means you get to bring the babies into your home and care for them. This takes a huge burden off the animal shelters and gives you a chance to play with baby animals. Definitely a win-win.

You can also help your local animal shelter by donating supplies; pet toys, food, bedding and bowls. Professionals can offer their services, veterinarians, groomers, even photographers to take pictures of the pets looking to be adopted are much appreciated.

To get started look up your local animal shelter. These days volunteer forms can usually be found online.

Have you volunteered at your local animal shelter? Share your experience with us.




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