4 Ways to Love Homeless Pets This Season
Adopting a dog isn’t the only way to open your heart to animals who are in need of love. There are many ways you can make a difference in a dog’s life. This holiday season has got me thinking, and I want to share a few ways you can make a big difference in the lives of homeless pets.
1. Try on the idea of fostering for size.
Plenty of people who adore dogs have never adopted one. Maybe it’s the fact they travel so often for work or maybe they won’t be able to care for an animal for the long-term. Maybe their rental doesn’t allow pets. Whatever the reason, local animal shelters are usually eager to find foster homes for animals. In some cases, if you’re willing to open up your home, the shelter will cover any expenses. If you have two to four weeks in your schedule, you could make a big difference in a dog’s life. Plus, you’re not only helping the dog you foster, you’re also allowing the shelter make space for another animal who may need help.
2. A little volunteering goes a long way.
Dogs can feel lonely and neglected while they’re waiting on their forever home. Depending on your skillset or what you like to do, volunteers are a welcome addition at animal rescues. Volunteering duties may include petting, playing, grooming, walking, and/or training the dogs.
But volunteering doesn’t have to end where the kennels are. If you’re a photographer or, say, someone who loves to fundraise, see if you can lend a hand by doing what you love most. If this interests you, pick up the phone and ask about volunteering opportunities or explore the website of an animal shelter near you and fill out one of their volunteer applications.
3. There are many ways to support a local animal shelter.
Money is a necessary resource to keep operations going. If you’re interested in sharing some of your resources, there are multiple ways you can get involved. Here are just a few ideas:
- Offer to sponsor a pet through a local shelter
- Use your money to buy shelter supplies, like dog food, bowls, toys, etc. (often this will be listed on their website or you can pick up the phone and call to ask what they need!)
- Sponsor an adoption fee for someone else
- Sponsor a kennel
- Make a donation directly to an animal organization
4. Start small.
I’m sure I’m not alone when I say I wish I could do it all. I’d love to adopt all the dogs in the world. I’d love to make sure every animal rescue has everything it needs. I’d love to end dog homelessness forever. But that’s pretty sweeping. And I find it’s best to remember where I am and what I can actually contribute. Making one small donation—$5 or $10—helps. Getting involved in some way—some teeny, tiny way—makes things happen. When we all get involved, that’s when we can move mountains.
I’m curious...do any of these resonate with you?
I hope this helps gives you some ideas of ways you can support homeless pets this holiday season. Hug your loved ones close, and I hope you can find many things to be grateful for.
Chaz & Beatrix