Help animals for under $10.00
What you can do to help shelter cats on an extremely tight budget. Last week I told you about my favorite humane places to shop online and I told you about animal rescue organizations where you make tax deductible donations, but these are some ideas of what you can do to offer immediate help but doesn't cost a lot of money.
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A friend of mine, Leslie who is Mattie's human told me that she visits a dollar store every month and stocks up on toys, bowls, collars and any other pet supplies they have. Usually, it only costs about $10.00 - $15.00 to get several items that any shelter cat or dog needs. Then she donates them all to her local shelter, People for Pets a no kill organization that cares for all animals that people can't care for until the animals are once again adopted.
On a tight budget, a dollar store is your best bet, you can get all sorts of wonderful things that a shelter needs without spending a lot of money. Most shelters have a list of things they need that you can buy from a dollar store, or from a discount grocery store. Most shelters have a wish list like this one. You can see from the items on this list that almost anything you buy will be appreciated. Shelters need the following items, so pick up what you can and take it over to your local shelter, the humans will be very grateful and the animals will experience less stress and be more content:
Toys for cats and dogs
Carriers, crates, kennels, dog houses
Scoopable and non scoopable Kitty Litter
Disposable rubber gloves
Food and water dishes (preferable stainless steel because they are easier to disinfect than the plastic ones)
Leashes and collars
Bleach, pet safe cleaning supplies
anti-bacterial hand soap
zip top storage bags
plastic storage containers
stamps and envelops
copier paper, file folders
blankets and comforters (clean of course)
Cat and dog beds
Bath towels, hand towels, wash cloths
Mops, brooms, hand brush and dust pans
plastic grocery bags
animal nursing bottles
dog and cat shampoo
kitten milk replacement formula
and even furniture and appliances (but check with the shelter before you bring them an item they may not need)
Canned cat and dog food dog biscuits and kitty treats
Most shelters are run by volunteers. Everything from adoptions, to paper work to veterinary skills are all volunteered. Usually monetary donations go toward paying the rent, heating and cooling, phones, and other overhead expenses. Remember that $10.00 can go a long way at the dollar store but in these tough economic times, if 10.00 - 15.00 is too much for your budget right now, consider spending some time at your local shelter. Everyone has a skill they can use in a shelter like:
lawn or yard maintenance
loving cuddles to needy animals
Typing, letter writing, reception
grooming, nail clipping, bathing
dog walking, cat toy wiggling
Professional legal skills
Organize a fundraiser
You don't need to donate huge sums of money or hours and hours of time to make a huge difference in the lives of the unfortunate cats and dogs of the world who just haven't found a loving home yet. All it takes is a little planning. Decide how much time or money you can afford, find your nearest dollar store and then drop off everything or head on over to the animal shelter. Any contribution is welcomed, especially now that the weather is getting colder and more animals are needing to find shelter.
If you are not sure where the nearest shelter is, visit the ASPCA Find a Shelter Page and enter in your state/province/territory or simply enter your city or county along with the words "humane society" or "animal shelter" in a search engine and a list of shelters will come up for you. If you have any other ideas for low cost ways to help animals, please comment below.
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