October is Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog Month. This month, like Adopt-A-Shelter-Cat Month in June, is so important to recognize and celebrate because of the over 4 million companion animals that lose their lives in shelters each year. That’s about 11,000 precious souls daily that are unable to find homes. So whether you have a dog (or five) at home or not, if you love dogs please get off your patootie and do just one thing this month to help a shelter dog.

What sort of things can you do (that won’t take a lot of time or money)? Here’s just a few ideas:

For a greater list of ways to help, pick up a copy of my book Defending the Defenseless: A Guide to Protecting and Advocating for Pets. It is full of hundreds of ideas of how to help pets.

The main goal is to get up and do something. So many people tell me “I could never go in to a shelter because I would feel sad and would want to take them all home.”  If every person who thought that actually garnered the courage to volunteer at a shelter, we would see a dramatic increase in adoptions, and volunteers could help the shelter with projects to be more welcoming for both people and pets. So we really do need to get beyond those selfish beliefs. After all, if you truly do love animals, you need to help.

And I can honestly tell you, there is no greater joy than helping a struggling shelter. Imagine if you were to lose your home and family and sat scared, cold and shivering with fear whether you would live or die. Every single person who loves animals would not hesitate to lift that pet into their arms and give comfort. So why are we denying the shelter pets this same comfort? Helping one animal feel better, comforting a scared pet, talking or singing to a pet, giving a soft blanket and a soft touch will not only help the pet, it will help you. And when you help your first pet find a home, you’ll be hooked and go back to do it all over again for the next one.

So this month, while we celebrate our shelter dogs, take a step and do something to help. You will be thanked with tail wags, body wiggles and wet kisses. And the worst thing that will happen is that you welcome home a new family member.

Please share other ideas of how you are helping shelter dogs this month! For me, I’m hoping that the local shelter will accept my offer to provide energy healing to some of the more stressed-out dogs. Paws crossed that they agree!

All my best,

Allie, hanging out with Under Dog!

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