The people who work in animal shelters across our country deserve our recognition and praise for the long hours and tireless work required to care for the animals in our neighborhood.
Since 1996, the Humane Society of the United States has celebrated National Animal Shelter Appreciation Week every year during the first full week of November. You don’t need to wait until November, however, to show your appreciation for the hard-working paid and volunteer animal shelter staff in your area.
Here’s a quick look at the history of animal shelters, according to advocacy group Save Our Shelter:
1824: Creation of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Great Britain.
1866: The SPCA travels to the United States with Henry Bergh forming the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
1869: The country’s first official animal shelter is formed by the Pennsylvania Women’s SPCA.
1877: Creation of the American Humane Association.
1954: Creation of the Humane Society of the United States.
1960s and 1970s: Private animal shelters are created in addition to municipal shelters.
What theyre doing
Here are some general job descriptions handled by animal shelter workers:
â¢ Perform animal care duties such as preparing food, feeding, walking and providing water.
â¢ Cleaning and disinfection of kennels and cages for cats.
â¢ Wash litter and food trays.
â¢ Sweep and mop the floors.
â¢ Monitoring of sick, quarantined and injured animals.
â¢ Assist the veterinarian or staff with vaccinations and minor medical treatments.
â¢ Keep a record of animal disposition.
â¢ Perform a daily animal count.
â¢ Interact with the public, volunteers and donors.
This year, you can show many acts of kindness towards your local animal shelter. Here are some ideas:
Adopt a pet. One of the best ways to show your appreciation to animal shelter workers is to adopt a pet from their organization. Animal shelter workers spend long hours caring for animals and their goal is to find forever homes for their furry friends. By adopting a pet, you are validating their efforts and helping them find room for further rescues.
Keep on giving. Especially during the pandemic where fundraising events have been canceled, many animal shelters are in financial difficulty. Donating to your local shelter is as easy as writing a check and mailing it, and your generosity will go a long way in helping the shelter stay open to serve the community.