On January 15, 2018, millions will come together to volunteer and honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who never stopped asking the question, “What are you doing for others?” The MLK Day of Service is a moment to work together to fulfill King’s vision for a better America – it’s a day “on” instead of a day off. There are countless ways to get involved this MLK Day. How about volunteering at a local animal shelter or rescue group? Help clean up, play with the animals, groom animals, and walk the dogs. Your time spent here will make the shelter a nicer environment for the furry residents.  Donate your skills. Do you have a special talent or hobby like photography or creating video? Photographing shelter pets or highlighting one in an adoptable pet video for his Petfinder profile can bring attention to a pet that’s often overlooked. A great photo on a pet’s Petfinder profile will make him more likely to catch an adopter’s eye. 

Donate a place in your home. Fostering a pet is not only a rewarding experience, but it’s a great way to help out your local shelter from the comfort of your own home.

Donate part of your wedding or event registry. Getting married or throwing a big party? I bet you don’t need those fancy china plates or the glass vase that’ll just sit in a cabinet collecting dust. Instead, have your shelter set up a registry page so guests can donate to the shelter rather than purchasing a customary wedding gift. It’s a rewarding experience for you, the shelter and your guests and it’s a great way to remember the meaning of your wedding! 

If you can’t donate your time, donate your pets’ gently-used items. Shelters can always use some extra supplies. Contact your local shelter or rescue group to see if it has a wish list of items it needs just be sure to clean any supplies before you donate them. Often a shelter’s wish list will include:
  • Water and food bowls
  • Toys
  • Leashes and collars
  • Brushes/grooming tools
  • Pet beds

Donate Old Linens. Linen closets are often overloaded with too many worn out items. Donate old bath towels, blankets, and sheets to your local animal shelter. These household items are used for bedding, clean up, and keeping the animals warm.  

Donate household items. Pet supplies aren’t the only supplies shelters need. Some other things that come in handy for shelters include:
  • Cleaning supplies (call your shelter and ask what cleaning supplies it uses/needs)
  • Old newspapers
  • Paper towel and toilet paper rolls
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Office supplies
Donate pet food and litter. Shelters and rescue groups go through a lot of pet food and cat litter every day. You can buy pet food in bulk at wholesale stores and donate:
  • Wet dog/cat food
  • Dry dog/cat food
  • Clumping cat litter
  • Non-clay cat litter (for kittens and post-op cats)
  • Dog/cat treats

By donating a few items to your local animal shelter or rescue group, you’ll be making a huge difference. And you’ll feel GREAT about doing it.

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