Recognizing animal shelters in November
When: November 1 – 7
What: What would you do if you could no longer care for your beloved pet? After exhausting options with friends and family members, you might turn to an animal shelter for help. Beginning Nov. 1, the groups and organizations that provide refuge for pets and stray animals have a chance to shine during National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week, celebrated the first week of every November.
Background: Established by the Humane Society of the United States in 1996, National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week is a weeklong event that gives communities the chance to help spread animal welfare awareness and tip their hats at animal shelters, which care for our animal friends when no one else is able.
Story Pitch: This is an ideal time for shelters and animal welfare organizations to promote their services to local communities and highlight volunteer and funding needs. Discussing the fees and procedures associated with adopting shelter pets can also encourage individuals in the market for a furry companion.
The Story Hook: According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), 3.7 million homeless cats and dogs will be euthanized this year. Consider the following when making your pitch:
- How have animal shelters been affected by the recent economic dip? Has there been an increase in the volume of pets from families who can no longer afford to care for them?
- What organizations are celebrating the week by promoting pet health? Are shelters holding reduced-cost spay or neuter clinics or hosting presentations about pet care?
- How does pet fostering assist shelters in managing large numbers of adoptable pets?
- How is the internet changing the ways that we adopt pets? How do sites like Petfinder.com or PetHarbor.com help shelters find homes for stray or unwanted animals?
- Last week, pet food company Iams launched the Home 4 the Holidays campaign to help shelter pets find homes over the next three months. What are some other ways shelters are preparing for the busy holiday season with promotion and education efforts?
Tips: How are animal lovers pitching in at shelters? Volunteers are essential helpers in operating a shelter, so seek out a vocal supporter for more information on how community members are involved.
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
National Animal Control Association
National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy
–Researched, compiled & written by Lisa Rowan
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