The world would be a truly wonderful place if every dog waiting at a shelter for adoption could suddenly find their perfect forever home. If they could all be loved and taken home and treated as an important furry member of the family. Unfortunately the world isn’t quite at that place, and many dogs will have to wait a long time before getting adopted. Not everyone out there has the proper housing, time, or patience to keep a dog properly, and sometimes it seems like there are way more dogs needing homes than homes available for dogs.
If you are like me and live in an apartment with a roommate and a ‘no dogs allowed’ policy, or if you work 70 hours a week and don’t have time to devote to a canine friend, or even if you are allergic to dogs and can’t be around them without breaking out in hives, you CAN still get involved in helping out animals in shelters. You just have to take a different approach instead of trying to bring them all home to live with you.
Hold an Adoption Drive
Many times just getting homeless dogs into the public eye can go a long way toward finding them new homes. Once people see how adorable, charming, energetic, loving, or enthusiastic they are, they are more willing to consider adopting them. So gather your friends and neighbors, borrow some space at a park or retail business, call a shelter or rescue organization that would be interested in working with you, and help get those puppies out there.
Become a Foster ‘Parent’
Maybe you have the space and yard needed to own a dog, but still aren’t quite ready to make a lifetime commitment. There are some shelters and rescue organizations that ‘foster’ dogs with available families until a permanent home can be found for them. Sometimes these dogs are very young or have health issues that require them to need extra care. It isn’t necessarily easier to foster a dog than to adopt one, but if you have the time and energy for it you may find it to be a rewarding experience.
Volunteer at a Local Shelter
There is always a need for volunteer help at local animal shelters. You can help socialize and exercise dogs on a regular basis, as well as clean up after them and perform regular tasks that keep the dogs healthy and happy while at the shelter. Some volunteers will take dogs to pet stores or events for adoption drives, and some will check in with new adoptive families to make sure everything is working out well once a dog has actually been adopted.
The best way to get involved in Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog month would obviously be to take a homeless canine into your family. But if you can’t do that, there are still plenty of ways to get involved in helping them out. Take some time to research the possibilities in your area and then go out and do what you can to make a difference!
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