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Animal Shelter Appreciation Week

Every year, during the first full week of November, National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week takes place! This year, those dates are from November 5th-11th. This week exists so that the people who work to tirelessly take care of the many rescues that come in troves are acknowledged and properly thanked. Animal shelters are incredibly vital when it comes to animals that have been mistreated, misplaced, or are just looking for a home overall. Specifically in New York City right now, most shelters are currently overflowing which is detrimental as that means they cannot accept any more rescues. In honor of this week and to help out with the at-capacity issue that is ongoing, here are a few things you can do to assist your local animal shelters:


Volunteer

Volunteers are truly what keeps animal rescues going. Even if you’re only able to contribute a small bit of your time to offer a helping hand, consider becoming one! Shelters will normally have many different things for someone to volunteer for they can range from dog walking, going to play with the animals, to helping at an adoption event! Wherever you can help, it will most definitely be appreciated.

Donate

Most animal shelters/rescues run on a very limited government budget or are non-profit. It's very rare to come across one that isn’t. That being said, donations are always needed! If you are in the place to, you can go online to your local shelter’s website to see where you can make a monetary donation to. Any bit helps! You can also make a supply donation! Shelters sometimes have what they need listed on their websites, or you can give them a call and ask! But, more often than not, they will take most of what is given, especially when it comes to food and toys.

Foster

If you have the means to, fostering does loads of good for shelters and for the lives of the animals residing there. As much as the people who work and volunteer at the shelter would like to create a comfy environment for these animals, it’s not always possible. A temporary home where an animal can stay while they wait for their forever home is much more ideal. It not only will lift the spirits of the animal but it will also clear out more space for the shelter to take in more rescues!

Adopt

Of course, there is always the option of adoption! If you’re looking for a new furry friend to keep you company, take a trip to your local animal shelter or rescue and see who needs a home. Again, only go this route if you know that you have the means to take care of a pet and are in the position to!

Engage on Social Media

Check out your local animal rescue’s social media pages (Instagram, Facebook, TikTok etc.) and interact with them! Algorithms these days are a bit odd so truly any singular like or comment can help boost the shelter’s reach. Social media has actually helped quite a bit of pets find their forever homes, especially on TikTok! Heartwarming comeback stories and awareness for older animals has skyrocketed in such a spectacular way online. You can also repost PSA’s that shelters might make on their accounts and share their information with others!

A quick suggestion if you don’t know where to start looking: Muddy Paws Rescue is a dog rescue that is well-known in NYC. Check them out!


Spread the Word

Talk about your local shelters with friends and post about them online! Shelters rely a lot on word-of-mouth since the majority of their funds go to the well-being of the animals. You can mention the positives of said organization and different events that are available to attend. This is such an easy and effective way to help out animal shelters!


While Animal Shelter Appreciation Week may only happen once a year, don’t forget that you can help out year round! Don’t be afraid to check out your local animal shelters and see what they’re up to!


Written by Ashley Lavalle


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