If you have a little free time, a big heart and you love fur babies, your local shelter may need you to be a dog snuggler.
We’ve written a lot about fur babies, the cats and dogs people love so much that they’re a true part of the family. Sometimes we have to write about hard things, though. Dog owners should read Cancer in Dogs Caused By Weed Killer as well as the post about what one artificial sweetener does to dogs. It’s better to know the dangers, no matter how scary they are, so you can protect your animals.
Dog Snuggler: the Best Job Ever?
First, let’s acknowledge what we’re all thinking, which is Dog Snuggler sounds like Dog Smuggler which is my new favorite reality TV show… that I just invented and doesn’t actually exist. I really want it to, though. People putting puppies under trench coats and sneaking them into restaurants, dentist offices, and Taylor Swift concerts sounds like must-see TV to me.
Awesome imaginary TV shows aside, there really are dog snuggler volunteer positions and you can probably be one if you want to be.
This story started with the Humane Society in Tampa, Florida. While they normally have plenty of student volunteers to love on their animals, when they go back to school, it leaves the shelter short-handed.
That may not sound like such a big deal but it’s actually a very big deal. Animals coming out of surgeries feeling scared, groggy and in pain probably would not get the extra dose of kindness the students had given them.
Good Morning Tampa Bay did a story on the volunteer shortage and now people across the country want to know where, when and how they can help their local shelters.
Liz McCoy of the Humane Society told the news outlet, “Nothing happy brings animals to our door. So when volunteers can come here and make their lives a little bit better, it’s a really moving thing to be a part of.”
Want to be a dog snuggler, but don’t live in Tampa Bay?
We’re certain that wherever you live, there are opportunities to volunteer at a shelter in your area. They seem to never have enough help. Not surprising when you think of the sheer number of cats and dogs that are dropped off each year.
Approximately 2.7 million dogs and cats are killed every year because the shelters are too full. There aren’t enough homes in which to place them.
Call your shelter and have a discussion about what you can do to help. Let them know you’ll be happy to walk, sing to and snuggle all the dogs you can get your hands on.
PS: this post means no offense to all the kitty cats and kitty cat lovers. All cat owners know that while their fur babies can be incredibly snuggly, they will let you know very quickly when the snuggling part is over. You know what that means. Kitty has claws!
No time to become a dog snuggler?
You can still help, and we sure hope you will. Here are some ways you can do good in your community and be a blessing to the animals who depend on those of us with only 2 legs to take care of them.
Shelter Pet PR
Shelter Pet PR is a super easy, and very effective way to help when you’re on social media. All you have to do is sign up and agree to share photos of adoptable animals in your area to your friends, family and following. How much easier could that be?
Once you are registered, only takes a couple of seconds, you’ll go to PetFinder.com to search for an animal near you that needs a forever home.
You can use the photos the shelter provides. Or you can go to the shelter and take some of your own. Either is just fine. The most important part of this volunteer gig is to share, share, share. Don’t give up. Become the curator in your area for all the precious pets who deserve to be loved and cared for.
Donate to your local shelter.
Of course, food, cat litter, toys, blankets and all sorts of things are needed at community shelters every day. Call up and ask how you can do the most good.
Even better? Get the kids involved. Teaching them about loving animals is a good lesson. The bigger lesson here is to learn that animals are not toys. Volunteering will help your kids understand that animals in shelters wound up there because of human beings. They’ll grow up with more love and respect for animals and hopefully will never forget the lessons you taught them.