Volunteering does not have to be hard, time consuming, or wasteful. Volunteering can actually be fun, educational, and fulfilling. Volunteering at your local animal shelter can give you the feelings that not many things can. It can give you a soft heart for animals that come from the side of the street. These animals may be the nicest and most sincere animals you will ever meet. Just like humans, these animals know when they are taken care of, and by volunteering at an animal shelter you can give hope to these wonderful beings. If you're still skeptical of why you should volunteer at an animal shelter here are 11 reasons that are sure to get you moving.
1. Volunteering isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but it should be.
Volunteers can be the only love an animal gets when it is put into the shelter. On more than one occasion I’ve played with a kitten that didn’t even know how to play, but through love and time the kitten never wanted to leave the bonding room. I’ve even met a kitten that held the galaxy in her eyes. I think she was blind or very close to it, but still who wouldn’t want to be near her. The animal shelter gives you experiences that you do not want to forget.
2. Animal shelters not only like when you come volunteer, but they love it.
Every time I go to my animal shelter the workers always greet me, and make sure I’m aware of anything new. They don’t have the time to play with the animals, and they know that animals need love just as much as we do. They are very thankful for the volunteers that take the time out of their day to play with the animals.
3. Animals will surprise you.
I’m not a cat person, but I am every time I go to the shelter. I love taking a sweet kitten or cat in my arms and hearing their gratitude right in my ear. I love when you take them into a bonding room and they just want to sit in your lap, or when they run and jump around as it is an amusement park.
4. It’s a good way to see if you can adopt a dog or cat.
Volunteering at the animal shelter gave me the knowledge and education that it takes to adopt an animal. I have been honored to adopt a dog from the animal shelter, and that dog is always surprising me. Because I got to play with other dogs there, I became aware of what my dog likes and what she doesn’t like. I found out that even if your dog came from a shelter, they might not like being near other dogs. Dogs get anxiety too, and I think my puppy associates other dogs to the shelter.
5. The more hours you put in, the more options you can chose from.
At my animal shelter, they give you opportunities to work behind the desk, to transport dogs from the vet and back, and more if you complete so many volunteer hours. This gives you experience that future jobs love to see. I have been able to run a couple social media accounts for my animal shelter, and that is an experience like no other. I get to take pictures of precious cats and dogs so that the public can see what amazing animals the shelter has for you to adopt.
6. Many organizations require volunteer hours.
I don’t know about you, but my organization loves volunteer hours. The more volunteer hours you have, the better. Volunteering doesn’t have to be a tedious task, and I think a lot of people believe it is. However, if you find the right place volunteering can be fun. Animal shelters love when a lot of people go in and seriously play with every dog and every cat. Of course you can’t play with them all, but you can definitely give each one some sort of attention.
7. It’s a great first date.
What’s a better first date than to take your person to volunteer at the animal shelter? The animal shelter atmosphere allows for the two of you to talk without any awkward silences, and if there is an awkward silence at least you’ve got a dog or cat on your lap. They also allow you to see what kind of person you are with. If your person doesn’t like dogs, but you are dog person then why not take them to the shelter to see how they react. The animal shelter can definitely give you a warm heart when you see your person playing with your favorite animal!
8. It’s not time consuming.
Going to the animal shelter does not have to be an all-day affair. My boyfriend and I go and always end up leaving after an hour. An hour was all it took to pet every dog and cat and play with many of them. We don’t mean to leave after an hour, but our biological clocks stop us after that time. It doesn’t have to be a long time as long as the animals are getting the attention and affection that they deserve.
9. It’s educational.
I know the term “education” throws many people off, but in this situation it can be very helpful. Some animal shelters allow children to volunteer with an adult, and by exposing children to the effects of an animal shelter it may give them something to be passionate about in the future.
10. Dogs and cats reduce stress and anxiety.
As a person who gets stressed out a lot, I have come to find a home in the animal shelter. If homework and studying becomes too much, playing with dogs and cats definitely boosts energy and lowers stress levels. I’m sure there are statistics galore on the truth behind this, but volunteering at the animal shelter and witnessing it yourself is better than any statistic.
11. You give an animal hope.
Being at an animal shelter can give you clarity on how many dogs and cats become abandoned or abused. It is extremely sad, but animal shelters give hope to the lost animals. Hope that one day they will find the perfect human. I would like to think that if my dog could talk that she would be thankful that I took the time to fall in love with her.