Spring is all about new life and fresh starts. The warmer temps and longer days are a great reminder to get outside, be more active, and do some good. Back in December I shared ways to celebrate the holidays by helping animals. This is the spring version with even more fun ideas to help rescue dogs, cats, and animal shelters in your community.
11 Ways To Help Dogs, Cats, and Shelters This Spring
1. Spring Cleaning. If you are like me you probably have way more pet supplies than you can ever use. Donate unopened treats or new (or gently used) toys to your local animal shelter. Have extra towels, blankets or pillows that are in good shape – they might make a perfect bed or safe place for a frightened dog or cat. Of course, make sure all donated items are clean and machine washable.
2. Spring Shower. Spring is kitten season and most shelters are overrun with little guys, some with moms and some without. Why not host a kitten shower and ask guests to bring kitten supplies like kitten replacement milk, meat baby food, warm blankets, cat beds, and heating pads for orphaned kittens. You can reward your guests with pink cupcakes and cat videos.
3. Spring Garden. In addition to kittens, many shelters are overwhelmed with abandoned ‘Easter’ bunnies at this time of year. If you have a backyard or existing garden, plant some extra red leaf lettuce, basil, cilantro, or parsley for your local bunny-friendly shelter. You can find a list of approved bunny produce here.
4. Spring Shape Up. Get in shape by participating in dog walks for local animal shelters and dog rescues. Depending on where you live, you might even be able to sign up for one walk per weekend. Create a fun training log on social media and ask friends to pledge based on number of steps, miles, or walks completed.
5. Spring Spay. Help reduce future litters of kittens by participating in trap/neuter/release efforts in your community. Supervise traps, transport cats to clinics, or provide recovery space.
6. Spring Cookout. Host a dog-friendly spring cookout and ask guests to bring a donation for a shelter or rescue. You can make it a potluck but instead of bringing food ask guests to bring something off your local shelter’s wish list.
7. Spring Foster. Fostering a homeless pet from a rescue or shelter is a great thing to do any time of the year. Make fostering a rescue dog, abandoned Easter bunny, or litter of orphaned kittens a new spring tradition.
8. Spring Sale. Take spring-cleaning to the next level by organizing a neighborhood garage sale and donating the profits to an animal shelter or dog rescue.
9. Spring Lessons. Use the warmer temperatures and longer days as an opportunity to teach neighborhood kids how to interact safely with dogs. P.S. Next week is National Dog Bite Prevention Week (4/8-4/14)
10. Spring Transport. Now that the weather is better and the roads are clear, save lives by signing up for dog transport from overcrowded facilities to animal shelters and rescues with more space.
11. Spring Dining. Have a regular dog-friendly bar or restaurant that you frequent? Ask them to donate a portion of sales for one night or create a monthly drink or food special that benefits homeless pets in your community. Help promote the event and make sure all your friends and family participate.
Spring is the perfect time to renew your commitment to the causes and issues that matter to you. Animal shelters and rescues need support all year long. Donate time, money, and your skills to organizations working to help animals. Volunteer to walk dogs, socialize with cats, clean cages, whatever it takes.
Have other suggestions of ways to celebrate spring and help dogs, cats, and shelters in your community? Please share in the comments!