Whether you live in a major city or a small town, there are bound to be countless animals in your community in need of help. While we can agree that all animals deserve to live in a home surrounded by a loving family, this is not always the case, as pets are regularly abandoned, neglected, and abused. But, as this article will explore, there are various ways for you to step up and help animals in need live a better life.

Adopt or Foster a Pet

If you’re contemplating getting a pet, make a visit to your local shelter rather than going to a breeder, as shelters aren’t permanent homes for a pet. While shelters do their best to cater to the needs of animals, living in a cage is not an ideal life. By adopting, you’ll make a world of difference by inviting a pet into your home where they’ll have a space of their own and live with individuals that care for them.

But, we understand that keeping a pet is not for everyone, whether it be due to preferences or financial situations. In this case, fostering a pet is the best option. As a foster parent, you’ll be responsible for caring for the pet until a permanent family is found. This could take anywhere between a few days to a couple of weeks. If, during this time you change your mind, you can apply to adopt them permanently as well.

Getting animals out of the shelter can sometimes prove to be an actual lifesaver, as reported by K9 of Mine. Some shelters are not classified as ‘no-kill,’ which means that once their capacity has been reached they can choose to euthanize animals to make space for others.

Become a Volunteer

Animal shelters, veterinary clinics, and non-profit organizations are a few of the many places you can become a volunteer. Depending on preference and ability, you can choose to help these organizations in the following areas:

  • Fundraising: Promote their fundraising programs online and in-person to generate money for the upkeep of shelters, food for pets, vaccinations, and more.
  • Maintenance: As a volunteer at a shelter, you’ll be asked to help clean cages, bathe animals, sort inventory, etc. You can lend a hand in administrative tasks as well, such as data entry, creating performance reports, and curating donor lists.

Looking for volunteer opportunities? Here are some organizations to reach out to!

Donate to a Cause

Find a shelter or non-profit in need of financial assistance and donate what you can. These organizations depend on the support of the community to function. Money donated to these organizations will directly be used towards caring for the pets such as paying for their food, affording minor/major surgeries, buying required doses of vaccinations, paying utility bills, and more.

As reported by HGTV, in addition to monetary donations, you can also donate items such as dog beds, leashes, chewy toys, blankets, pet food, and litter trays. Do ensure that donated items are in good condition and can be used by the shelter for their animals.

Start a Non-Profit Organization

For individuals who want to be hands-on towards improving animal welfare, starting a non-profit is a great option. The mission of the non-profit can be based on a cause you’re passionate about which can include stopping cruelty against animals, advocating for better animal laws, etc. But, before you can start working on the mission, you’ll need to take a few important legal steps, such as:

  • Incorporating the organization to be recognized as a 501(c)(3) corporation that is exempted from paying taxes.
  • Choose the board of directors who will handle key parts of the organization such as operations, marketing, etc. Depending on where you live the minimum number of directors can vary between 1-3.
  • Create company by-laws and file articles of incorporation.

Whether you donate, volunteer, or start a non-profit organization, each of these steps will help to make a meaningful impact in the lives of pets in your community. Additionally, motivate those around you to pitch in towards the cause as well.

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