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How to help shelters in your community





1. Donate Your Skills and Experience

Shelters need help from those with specialized knowledge and skills. For example, those who love taking photos or making videos of animals could be a huge help in closing the gap between animals and adopters. It takes a lot of skill to photograph a dog who just wants to play catch! But if you can do it, your skills would definitely help animals find homes. 

2. Donate Your Time

Volunteering to spend time with the animals at your local shelter or rescue is an incredible gift, not only to the animals, but to those that work there. Animal shelters need all the extra hands they can get. There are a lot of dogs to walk and cats to groom. By donating your time to these animals, you will not only build relationships with them but you will begin to see the impact your spare time is having.


volunteers are an extremely important component to the functionality of this non-profit company. Volunteers supplement the duties of paid staff by providing many great services that enhance and help expand our existing programs. This includes, but is not limited to, walking dogs, cleaning kennels and cages, helping customers find the right pet and assisting front line staff.

3. Donate Your Pet's Used Items

Most animal shelters have a wish list that you can donate to. Maybe your dog isn't interested in the toy you bought him so instead of burying it in the bottom of the toy box, donate it! Just because these animals are in shelters doesn't mean they don't like a good game of tug-a-war. You can contact your local animal shelter to find out more about some of the items they may need and that you might have lying around at home. Items like lightly used pet beds, food/water bowls, leashes and toys are always welcomed.

4. Donate Household Items

Do you have old towels and sheets that you don't know what to do with? Donate them to your local animal shelter. Just ensure they are clean and washed properly as most shelters use them to provide comfortable bedding for cats and dogs. Even paper towels, pillows and wash cloths are needed. Animal shelters can get pretty messy considering their residents, so cleaning supplies including, laundry detergent, dishwashing liquids, bleach and soaps are all used to keep your local shelters clean and safe. Garbage bags, brooms, mops and sponges are all thoughtful donations. 

5. Donate Grooming and Medical Supplies

Animals waiting in shelters rely on being groomed to look their best for potential adopters. Shampoo, pet soaps, brushes and combs are all needed in your shelters. Even flea and tick treatments are needed. All these pets deserve to get dolled up, especially if it will help them find a forever home. Consider donating medical supplies to help sick or injured animals. Anything from cotton and gauze products to vitamins and treatments can help save the lives of animals in need. 

Chlorine bleach is used to clean and disinfect the kennels, cages, feeding bowl and adoption center. but also to control bacteria.

6. Donate Pet Foods and Formula

A large amount of the money donated by generous individuals goes toward buying pet food and milk formula. No one likes going to bed on an empty stomach, which includes the pets at your local shelters. Donate a few bags of food or formula to ensure those waiting to be adopted don't go to bed hungry. Reach out to your local shelter to see if there are any specific brands they may require or treats the pets like.


The CCSPCA houses anywhere from 250 to 500+ animals a day. If you multiply that times 365 days, that’s 91,250 to 182,500 mouths to feed over the course of a year. Typically a dog eats ¼ cup to 2 cups of food a day, That’s an average of 94 to 750 cups of food a day which equals to 34,310 to 273,750 cups of dog food for one year!

They also house more than 10,000 cats and kittens every year. who also eat twice a day. They require ¼ cup of food per feeding, so that’s a ½ cup of food per day. The CCSPCA houses an average of 80 cats per day, which equals 14,600 cups of food per year.

7. Donate a Place in Your Home

Being a foster parent can be unimaginably rewarding. Giving an animal in need a place in your home allows them to feel something they may not have felt before, safe. Donating a place in your home will not only bring the animals spirits up, but it will be a fulfilling experience for you and your family. Contact your local animal shelter to find out more about fostering animals in need. 


8. Cat Litter 

Cat litter is ideal for deodorizing litter box smells, clumping urine for easy removal and providing a space for the cat to eliminate itself. The CCSPCA prefers to use cat litter, rather than another product, for several reasons. One, it helps cats/kittens get acclimated to using a litter box before they get adopted. Two, it’s easy to clean up and lastly, it helps to deodorize our cattery.


9. Food Bowls/Litter Pans 

It's used for both food and water. Some of the kennels require more than 2 bowls per kennel, depending on how many animals are occupying the same kennel.


10. Office Supplies

When most people think of what an animal shelter needs they focus on items for the animals, which are definitely needed. However, to run any business you need office supplies. Paper, pens and pencils, sticky notes, staples, paper clips are just some of the items we use on a daily basis. By donating these types of items, it allows them to purchase other needed items for the animals.


11. Carriers/Collapsible Wire Crates 

We often take our adoptable animals to off-site events. If we cannot take our mobile adoption unit to a specific off site event, we will often set up large wire collapsible crates and carriers with adoptable animals. Carriers are used in a variety of ways at the CCSPCA. Our animal control officers need them to be able to transport animals from the community to the animal center, the adoption’s department uses carriers to transport animals to offsite events, and our staff uses them to transport animals from building to building on site.


12. Monetary Donations

Monetary donations are also extremely helpful. By donating money, we are able to use if for a variety of different purchases and services. However, by making a donation to our Wellness Fund you are providing monetary support for those animals that need extra medical care. The medical care could range from providing antibiotics to surgical procedures. These types of procedures are at an additional expense to the shelter which then applies the cost to the adoption fee at a greatly discounted price. The animal medical donation fund helps to offset the cost of these procedures rather than applying additional fees to the cost of an animal’s adoption. If the amount of the donation(s) exceeds the actual cost of medical assistance, those funds will be applied to help future animals in need of medical assistance.

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paolavaz@olivatelie.com 

Manly Beach, NSW Australia

© 2019 by Oliv Atelie 

All rights reserved 

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