Rescue shelters are the backbone of animal welfare in our country. Some are run by local municipalities, some by larger charitable organizations or humane societies, but there are quite a few animals that find new homes thanks to small groups, runs by a few individuals, subsisting on funds generated by everything from bake sales to adoption events.
These smaller groups can sometimes be crushed by their own success, with a few individuals just not being able to say no, and eventually cracking under the stress of having far too much on their plates. Which can be unfortunate, as these dedicated, hard working individuals can be responsible for saving hundreds or even thousands of animals each year.
So, if you hear about someone doing a good job with the animals, and have the opportunity to help, please do so. Help with time, help with donations, help with supplies. Give them the assistance they need to be able to continue their good works.
Christmas brings up another opportunity to help as well. People look to donate to a good cause each year, and the holidays can be a difficult time for both people and pets. Many people work in offices that co-ordinate a donation to local rescues, or to groups providing for animals in need. Its not hard to find a deserving recipient for holiday donations. Some even make it fun by having a “secret Santa”, but instead of buying for each other, buy a dog toy/treat for one in need.
Colleen sent in a suggestion about one way to help, by being a flight companion. Many times, there will be a surplus of animals in one area, and a demand in another. Putting at risk animals into a better situation by transporting them out of the area improves their opportunity for adoption, as well as opening up a space for an animal locally.
To ship a pet on an airplane, it can cost upwards of $500. If you add a companion animal to your plane ticket, it costs a fraction of that. It sounds dumb, but that is the way it works. So, by becoming a flight companion, you let the rescues know where and when you are flying, and they arrange to meet you at the airport with the animal, and have someone at the other end, and they will also cover the additional expense added to you ticket.
These huge savings allow rescues to use the monies they raise a lot more efficiently, instead of just tossing those fees into the air.
If you have the ability to be a travel companion for an animal, one person you can contact is Chelsea Kork ( Kork.firstname.lastname@example.org ). Chelsea jokingly calls herself a “travel agent for dogs”. She has arranged transportation for 100’s of dogs, saving them from freezing and starvation. Contact Chelsea with your travel itinerary, and she will make the arrangements if she has an animal in need for that time.
Just another example of a person going above and beyond for the welfare of our companion animals. Thank you Chelsea for your efforts, we know that the pets you have helped thank you too.