(A declawed mother with her four 1 month old kittens at my local shelter)
Along with photographing animals at my local SPCA, I also answer the shelter's e-mails and it's always hard to read some of these. However, these e-mails from people unable to keep their animals due to being evicted or loss of employment have increased dramatically! The economy in Florida, and especially this area) is very, very bad! I'm sure many shelters around the country are having to turn animals away and it is truly heart wrenching! Although we are a non-kill shelter, we can't take all the needy animals in our community and I shudder to think about what happens to them...
Therefore, I am publishing a list of ways people can help. I believe there are many people out there that want to help animals but aren't sure how.
There are so many easy ways to help animals. Many of these ways require little sacrifice but can save a life. Most ways fall into the categories of donations, fostering, transporting animals, volunteerism, and public outreach.
Donating even a small amount of cash such as $10.00 can make such a huge difference in the lives of several animals. An expert on the Petfinder web site stated that she could give 5 animals basic vaccines for that amount of money. Those who sell items on EBay can choose to have a very small or very large percentage of there profits to groups or agencies that help animals. Donating needed supplies such as food, litter, old towels and bedding, hand sanitizer, and laundry detergent to your local animal shelter is also a wonderful way to help out.
If donating money or supplies is not an option, simply visiting the Animal Rescue Site:
and clicking on this button:
will provide a hungry animal with .6 bowls of food. This site also allows one to send a free e-card which provides an animal with 1.0 bowls of food. There is a really great variety of cards to choose from for all occasions.
There are nowhere near enough foster homes for animals. Fostering animals does not mean that you have to have a house full of animals all the time or become animal rescuer of the year. Imagine if everyone fostered just one animal per year. This is not entirely realistic, but if it were, think how many animals’ lives could be saved! Fostering can be a very enjoyable and very rewarding experience and is a great opportunity for children to learn about animal care.
A lot of the time it's not an issue of rescue not being available but a matter of getting the animal to the vet, a foster home or a shelter. There are several great websites where transport coordinators post for volunteers where you can check if a transport is coming through your area. You don't have to make a regular commitment to transporting. Even helping out a couple of times a year and you've made a big difference for the animals you've transported.
A person can volunteer in a variety of ways. Another expert on the Petfinders’ site said that it’s wonderful to have volunteers with good administrative and computer skills who can set up a web site, but having enough people to change litter boxes and walk the dogs is critical, and there seems to be a tremendous shortage of such people.
Educating the public about the importance of spaying and neutering their pets and caring for animals is another opportunity to help. You can plan a program for children at schools, camps, or churches. Web sites are another way to educate the public. They do need to be advertised enough and in such a way that all people will find their way to them and not to those who already know the information they contain.
Please feel free to leave a comment with any ways that I’ve left out!
Thanks for stopping by! I will be visiting all of you soon. I so appreciate all of me readers and their comments :)))
(below is a new Long-haired Chihuahua to our shelter)