Adopting an animal from a shelter not only saves a beloved pet’s life by giving them a loving home, it also frees up shelter space for other animals who needed caring. By definition, an animal shelter is a staffed facility where homeless, stray, lost, abandoned or surrendered animals—and animals seized by authorities in cruelty cases are housed, nursed back to health, cared for, until they could find a loving home. The same could be said of rescue centres. There are private and state-owned shelters, even rescues/sanctuary organizations that have different protocols. Regardless, we should help them help our beloved little friends. From this point, let’s refer to all these as animal centres.
In 2019, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) reported that they took in 10,564 dogs in their centres, had 786 horses in their care at the end of 2019, took in 29,432 cats to their centres, and found new homes for 39,178 animals. Many smaller shelters do the same while also doing programs like spay and neuter, feeding strays, and getting injured or sick ones heal. In an ideal world, no animal suffers, but we live in a far different reality and everyday, there are creatures that suffer in one way or another.
Even if you don’t own a rescue team, you can help animals by helping your local shelter. Here are some ways to extend a paw.
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Animal centres, whether government owned or run privately pays a lot of bills. That includes electricity, water, rent or mortgage, veterinary fees, and miscellaneous expenses. Not to forget of course is food, which when you have 1000 mouths to feed mean really lots of money. Medication, both internal and topical, can also amount to insane $ for a lot of rescues.
Most, if not all shelters and rescues have to pay monthly rent or mortgage. The land their buildings are on, unless owned need paying, maintenance, even securing. With the pandemic happening, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) allowed payment holidays or payment deferrals, shelters and rescues are allowed to pause monthly payments for a temporary period. This will give them some relief but would also mean accumulation of outstanding payments.
There are a number of shelters worldwide we support, and though we don’t regularly donate, we did a little – in Greece, Israel, the Philippines, and sometimes in Austria too. One of those we really like for doing the best for cats is Chachi’s Haven, a cat rescue centre in Israel. It is run solely by its owner, she has a sanctuary for the cats, and she feeds strays everyday in many feeding stations. The property that the animal centre is at sometimes get snakes as visitors, and it’s dangerous to say the least. You can really help by donating to Chachi’s Haven here.
Another way to donate is through your earnings. Are you a creative? You can help animal centres by giving a part of your earnings to them, make sure that you include this information on your sales brief so that people will get encouraged to buy and donate at the same time.
Animal centres are most of the time short-staffed. Volunteers make a huge contribution to the efforts done by animal centres in preventing cruelty to animals, promote kindness, care for, and stave off the suffering of animals.
Volunteers doesn’t only help in many ways, they also gain experience, valuable skills, and even a whole new perspective about life when they spend time in animal centres. Reach out to your local shelter to know how to be of help.
Foster carers play a crucial role to the well-being and rehabilitation of animals in centres. Their time, patience, love, and attention gives so sick, or abandoned animals a second chance at happiness. Foster carers help animals in many ways, some include:
- Helping them recover from surgery or illness in a stress-free space, as animal centres tend to be full and being around other sick animals can worsen their condition.
- Give mom animals a proper space to care for their young litters.
- Give a conducive environment for rehabilitation, gives animals time out from animal centre environment.
- Learn human interaction and have a family experience life while they wait to get adopted.
Share Their Causes
If your pet qualifies as a Pet Influencer, you can share updates, wishlists, any other information that animal centres share on their social media pages on your own accounts to raise awareness. Even if you don’t have pets of your own, you can share calls for help on your personal page, many animals lovers are willing to help, sometimes, they just don’t know how or where to send help.
You can also organize donation drives for animals by requesting for help from your community. You can ask for particular items like canned food, litters, dog beds, and other shelter needs. When your campaign has run its course, you can bring the items to the animal centre to lighten their expenses.
Adopt a Pet
There are a lot of great reasons why you should adopt a pet from an animal centre. One, it frees them space to give way to other animals needing help. Which may sound not a good enough reason to adopt, but then – having a pet at home means joy a hundredfold. To list down here are some more:
You save a life.
Some animals get defeated by their situation, taking them out means giving them a second chance at life. A chance thrive and to be happy. Given that some animals can be euthanized at animal centres that implement such, you make such a big difference to the animal you will adopt.
You get the best cuddles from older animals.
Older animals give the best cuddles, and have so much love to give. Having three cats at home aged 10 and above, we know this too well. They are still playful as kittens, but they are also live bugs, will tolerate your cuddles and pets as much as they would. Priceless!
You help the community from pet overpopulation.
When you take in an animal as a pet, they are removed off the streets and won’t contribute to the pet population. Of course, there are options to spay or neuter animals and bring them back to their colony as a humane gesture, but such won’t guarantee them of a life away from danger.
You encourage others to adopt.
People could have hesitations when it comes to adopting, when you adopt a pet from an animal centre, they might lose those thoughts and adopt one for themselves.
Ways To Help Animal Shelters and Rescue Centres, Start Now
When you look at it, helping out animals isn’t only helping the animals, it has a ripple effect to humans. To sum it up, here are ways to help animal shelters and rescue centres:
Donations – both in cash or in kind are always appreciated by animal centres, it helps them lessen the thoughts of where to get money or food for their rescues.
Adopt a Pet – by adopting you save more than one life, giving your adopted pet a second chance at happiness, and giving another animal a space at the centre.
Be a Foster Parent – and help animals learn to trust humans again.
Share Their Causes – encourage others to donate, help out, or adopt by bringing awareness to shelter and rescue causes. Facebook, Instagram, Tiktok, Twitter – are all helpful platforms to bring attention to animal causes.
Volunteer – time spent with animals is never wasted! Giving them attention, help, and love also gives us a sense of fulfillment, as God made us stewards for His other creatures too, that mission gets fulfilled when we do something good for our little furry friends.