Raising money while working out seems too good to be true. The Charity Miles app lets you do just that! The free app tracks your mileage whether biking, walking or running and earns money towards the charity of your choice.

The simple fundraiser begins with a click on your smartphone. Download the application, create a profile and choose a charity. Then it’s time to get moving! The more you move, the more money the charity makes! If you simply don’t enjoy walking, running or biking, there are other options. You can skate, dance or even jump rope! You just need to choose the setting that best resembles your favorite type of exercise. Running and walking earns up to 25 cents per mile while biking earns up to 10 cents per mile.

Charity Miles benefits many non-profits spanning from fighting cancer and helping wounded soldiers to helping animal shelters and protecting nature. For example, if you choose to exercise for an animal welfare organization, the money from your exercise regimen could help save animals, help build extra shelter space or even buy more food for the animals.

One of the best things about this type of fundraiser is that it not only tracks your time and distance, but it tracks the impact you are making for your charity. You get updated information as to how you are helping the charity by simply exercising. Charity Miles allows you to stay healthy while helping others do the same.

Every mile you accomplish matters for your charity. When you get tired and want to quit, it will help your legs go another mile knowing you are helping change lives.

There are many things you can do for marketing your organization and the animals and community you serve as an animal rescue and shelter. First and foremost, you need to have ads that catch the viewer’s eye and hold their attention. It’s not hard to do, but there are a few key points that are often successful.

Show pictures of the animals at their best.  Using good lighting, along with a smiling face, goes a long way with presenting them in a positive light. Give a good description of the animal, along with what type of home they would do best in, such as “Needs to be the only dog in the house,” or “Loves dogs/cats and children,” etc.

Post videos of animals interacting with people and other pets. Give each animal a short bio. Keep it simple and short to get your message across.

Tell people what they can do to help.  Keep it positive and upbeat.  Let them know you are available to help them and will work with them after adopting a pet.

Let the public know of the work you do in the community as an animal rescue and shelter.  Hold events and invite people to come by and say hello. Make contacting you easy by providing all your contact information: phone numbers, email, website and all your social media accounts. Be sure to respond quickly to all inquiries and assist in whatever way you can to answer people’s questions and help them with their concerns. Have flyers and business cards available to give out at your events.

Tell people how amazing you are. Let them know how much you care and most importantly, acknowledge and thank everyone who helps.  Always keep it positive and upbeat. Share all your successes. Follow-up and promote successful adoptions.

Show pictures of your volunteers and have them tell their stories of why they volunteer and what it has done for them. Tell your readers why they should volunteer and why they should help you. Invite them to contact you to find out more. Let them know that all help is appreciated and you welcome it.

Your work and message are important. People want to know about you and want to help. Don’t be shy about who you are and what you do. Push the message of it’s all about helping the animals. That’s the key to successful marketing.

Accepting Donations

August 21, 2015

Most animal shelters if they are non-profit depend on their financial means to come from donations. If you are one of these shelters and looking for new ways to accept donation to help properly care for the animals and keep the shelter running with ease try some of these methods.

Place Donation Boxes at Local Businesses

Your local community is a great place to start when in need of donation to help support your community’s animal shelter. Ask local businesses if it would be okay to place donation boxes at checkout areas or check in areas of your local veterinary hospitals. Some of the best local businesses to start with are pet stores. Make sure each of your donation boxes sponsor a pet at your shelter with a brief description of what the animal is like so not only are you encouraging donations, but adoptions as well.

Send Out News Letters with Donation Slips

Sending out newsletters about your shelter too all the members in your local community along with some neat stories about some of the animals in your shelter is an outstanding way to inspire people to want to donate and help support your non-profit organization. With each news letter you mail out though, do not forget to add in a donation slip for those willing to donate along with a pre-paid mailing envelope so they can send the helpful donations too you directly at the animal shelter.

Create a Donation Site Online

The internet is a wonderful place to create a site online where people can send donations electronically to the shelter. Make sure your online site shows pictures of the animals in the shelter, information on what the shelter is about, and a brief introduction to the people who work there to help care for the animals on a regular basis. Also, include inspirational stories of the rescue pets brought to the shelter, have found new loving homes and stories of the ones that still are looking for their forever home.

End Notes to Think About 

This is just handful of ways to accept funds from your local community to keep your non-profit animal shelter running properly so you can care for all the animals that are there on a day-to-day basis until they find new homes. Other ways you can accept donations is through fundraisers and hosting adoption events at local businesses and doggy parks.

Like employees, animal shelter volunteers are valuable team members, and it’s important to keep them safe. However, even with strict safety protocols and comprehensive volunteer training programs in place, volunteers can become injured. If a volunteer is hurt at your animal shelter, follow these simple yet important steps.

Animal welfare employees should:

1. Remain calm.

Take a deep breath. Show the injured volunteer and nearby staff members that you have control of the situation.

2. Call for help.

Notify a supervisor or manager on duty.

3. Identify and remove any hazards between yourself and the injured volunteer.

This may include securing loose animals and checking the floor for slippery areas. Know that if you hurt yourself while trying to help the volunteer, two injured people will need assistance instead of one.

4. Perform first aid, and seek medical attention if needed.

If the injuries are serious, call the volunteer’s emergency contact once help arrives and someone with more first aid experience takes over.

5. If animals were involved in the incident, examine and document their behavior and injuries.

Contact a veterinarian if necessary.

6. Interview any witnesses, and gather their contact information.

7. Document the incident in an accident report.

8. Submit a claim to your animal welfare organization insurance provider as soon as possible.

9. Assess the incident.

Ask yourself and fellow employees:

  • How could this injury have been avoided?
  • What have we learned from this incident?
  • Do we have sufficient volunteer training protocol in place?

10. Make changes to avoid a similar occurrence.

Learn how to implement an accident investigation plan.

11. Follow up with the volunteer to ensure he or she is healing well.

If you’ve identified any improvements to make your workplace safer, share these improvements with the volunteer.

After experiencing an injury, animal shelter volunteers should:

1. Call for help.

2. Receive first aid and/or medical attention if necessary.

3. Document the incident as soon as possible.

4. Assess your situation.

If you need time to heal physically and mentally, take a break from volunteering. Ask yourself, am I ready to volunteer tomorrow? Next week? In a month? Be honest.

5. Follow up with the animal shelter.

Tell a manager how you’re healing and ask any questions you have about how the incident was handled.

Unfortunately, accidents happen. Keep your team safe and supported by implementing, practicing and improving your injury prevention and response protocols.

Animal welfare organizations rely on community involvement to stay in business. It may seem that creating community involvement is difficult, even a little daunting. Here are a few tips to help create community involvement. With a little time and consistent effort, you will see growth.

Create a schedule of fun events that invites the public to come and see what your organization is all about. To get community involvement, you have to be present in the community. One idea is perhaps a pet adoption event that has food, games and educational information. Have information cards for everyone to fill out. Make sure to collect email addresses.

An email address list is very important, especially for staying in touch with the people who have expressed interest in what you are trying to do. Create a monthly newsletter that informs these folks of your upcoming events and important issues. As your email list grows so will the community involvement.

Social media is a really efficient way to reach people twenty four hours a day. Create a Facebook page, and invite people to like it. This another great place to educate and post your upcoming events. You should have links available on your Facebook page that will direct interested parties to your website.

A website is very helpful way to gather information, even after the office is closed. You should ask for email addresses. This will add to your email list, and make your newsletter reach an even bigger part of your community.

Building community involvement is very important. Implementing the above tips will go a long way in getting more people involved. The best part about it is, once it is set up, it is very easy to maintain and grow.

Dealing with an aggressive animal can be difficult and overwhelming. Typically when an animal is aggressive in some way it is because they are feeling afraid and the need to be defensive occurs. Sadly, sometimes, aggression occurs through training if a puppy at a young age falls into the wrong hands of an individual whose soul purpose is to train that dog to fight.  Thankfully, there are helpful ways to rehabilitate any animal that has aggressive issues so euthanizing that animal does not have to occur. You just have to find out the cause of the aggression and realize some essential key factors first.

Discover the Form of Aggression it Has 

Just as humans can act out in an aggressive way from hurt, animals can too. Animals have feelings and need lots of tender love and care. When animals do not receive the tender love and care they so rightfully deserve they begin to act out in ways that you may feel are dangerous such as biting, scratching, leaping at you, growling, or hissing. Remember, these are forms of self-defense in an animal’s mind. Learning the cause of the aggression will help you find a solution to it. Some forms of aggression in animals are:

  • Territorial Aggression
  • Defensive Aggression
  • Social Aggression
  • Frustration-Elicited Aggression
  • Redirected Aggression
  • Pain Elicited Aggression
  • Predatory Aggression

Retrain the Animal to Develop Better Behavior 

Once you have learned the type of aggression the animal is suffering from you can than safely help retrain the animal’s mind and rehabilitate it using the right training techniques. Thankfully, animal shelters have trainers that help rehabilitate an animal before they go out to new homes. However, if you do not have the privilege of receiving a rehabilitated animal from an animal shelter and need assistance call in a professional to help you with the process.

Show the Animal Tender Love and Care

Anytime you are rehabilitating animal you have to have patience and provide it with lots of tender love and care. You want the animal to begin to trust and feel safe again so it doesn’t  feel the need to defend itself. It is also essential you always show the animal you care and it is doing good in the training process by providing it with treats and toys it loves most. Providing the animal with comforting things they love helps with the healing process too.

Every animal shelter’s main goal is to connect animals with people to give a pet a loving “forever home.” Sometimes, obstacles get in the way of creating that connection. With a little ingenuity, shelter operators can make some simple changes that will result in more animal adoptions that will give pets a second chance in life.

Highlight a Few Animals at a Time

Walking into a shelter and seeing hundreds of animals at once can be daunting for prospective adopters. Too many choices can overwhelm people and make them reluctant to make any choice at all. By limiting the number of animals in view, adopters will feel like they have meaningfully interacted with the available pets, resulting in an increased chance of animal adoptions.

Put Less Adoptable Animals Closer to the Entrance

A lot of people come into the shelter with one goal – to adopt the cutest puppy or kitten they see. By giving higher visibility to adult animals, people may just find an animal that steals their heart. Additionally, some shelters are putting puppies and kittens in a separate area near the back of the shelter so that people have a chance to view all of the animals before seeing the babies.

Use Elevated Crates

Placing cats and smaller dogs in elevated viewing areas makes it easier for people to interact with them. Not having to bend or crouch makes the viewing experience more comfortable for a potential adopter and allows them more time make a connection with a particular animal. Also consider putting toys in crates to motivate the animals to be more active.

Groom and Accessorize

A well-groomed animal is more attractive to a prospective adopter than one that is less maintained. Adequate brushing is a low-maintenance step to keeping animals’ coats healthy and shiny. Adding bright-colored hair bows or bandanas is another way to up the cuteness factor and grab the attention of a would-be adopter.

Mix Different Breeds in the Same Crate

Pairing common breeds alongside more exotic breeds is an effective strategy in getting all animals noticed. Someone who is drawn to an English bulldog will also get a chance to interact with a black lab or dachshund, two breeds that are over-represented in shelters.

Hosting an adoption event properly is essential for helping the animals you love so much find loving homes. If you need tips on running an adoption event successfully here are some helpful tips to get you off to a good start.

Plan the Event Accordingly 

Before you can host an adoption event, you need to plan it out accordingly. You need to figure out what animals in the shelter you are hosting the adoption event for and where you want to hold the adoption even such as:

  • Inside a Shopping Mall
  • Empty Store Front
  • Busy Parking Lot
  • Pet Boutique
  • Pet Stores
  • At a Festival

You want to choose a place that has heavy traffic and allows you to host a pet adoption event without costing you fines or other hassles. You want the places you pick to be family oriented too.

Advertise the Event

Next, it is time to advertise the event. Make sure you send out emails, post flyers and ads in the newspapers and spread the word about the event to all friends and family members. Provide the date, time and address of where the event is being held. Consider posting flyers or posters in local hot spots of the animals from the shelter that will be at the adoption event so people can learn about the animals before going to the event and have a chance of falling in love with them. This will help increase the chances of animals from the shelter finding new loving homes.

Bring Adoption Forms to all Adoption Events 

If you are going to host an adoption event always have adoption forms and applications for potential new pet owners to fill out while they are at the event visiting with all the animals that need new homes. Once the event is over, you can take the time to go through the applications and look over potentially new pet owners that would provide the best home and care the animals in your shelter so rightfully deserve.

End Thoughts for Hosting Adoption Events 

With proper planning and preparation for an adoption, event success will occur and soon the animals in your shelter will be with loving families. Just make sure the families you are allowing to adopt the animals are loving people who truly do adore animals. Nothing is worse than adopting an animal out to someone who just wants a pet just because.

Stereotypic behavior has a tendency to develop in stabled horses in less than ideal conditions. You may have heard of these behaviors being referred to as “vices”. They can take many forms but have some commonalities as well. Many experts have studied stereotypic behavior and the general consensus is that if your horse exhibits these issues it is likely due to stress. Despite being explained in a variety of ways, (aggressive, fear-driven, performance-related, etc.), the problems still boil down to stress in one form or another. It is common to find these types of behaviors in horses acquired through an animal connection.

Some examples of stereotypic behavior among stabled horses include: box-walking, crib-biting, and weaving. Other less common behaviors occur as well; generally they are centered on oral activities such as chewing the tail and/or mane or odd ambulatory issues.

The consequences of stereotypic behavior vary widely based on the specifics of your horse. Some behaviors, such as pacing their stall are more nervous behavior and present little health hazard. Other more detrimental habits like chewing body parts or stalls may cause harm to your horse.

Once these behaviors begin in your horse, they can be difficult if not impossible to get rid of. Many treatments such as metal collars for cribbing or electric shock generally do more harm than good. The surest method in the case of stereotypic behavior is prevention.

Prevention can be performed in a variety of ways. One of the best ways is to socialize your stabled horse. An animal connection can be a very valuable resource in preventing the development of stereotypic behaviors. Horse toys can also be useful tools in the struggle to regulate behavior. Whatever method is chosen, it is important to keep the horse engaged and stress free. Stress and boredom will lead to behavioral problems and whatever method works best for you should be employed to prevent these situations from occurring.

Horse First Aid

August 5, 2015

Very little is as nerve wracking for an equestrian as finding your horse injured and being unsure how to help. Keeping updated on animal health and first aid procedures can help you be ready in the event of an injury.

Remain Safe

Before rushing to your horse’s aid, ensure you can do so safely. Check the environment around the horse for possible dangers. Assess your horse’s disposition. Even the gentlest animal can lash out when frightened or in pain. If you cannot help safely, wait for help.

Vitals

Checking vitals is the first step in determining how to help your horse.

  • Ensure the patient is breathing and whether breathing is labored or obstructed.
  • Find a pulse point and check heartbeat.
  • If possible, check the horse’s temperature.

Considering Help

You must determine if it is necessary to call for help, or if you can treat the injury yourself. The answer will depend on both the situation and the handler’s level of skill and confidence. Call your veterinarian or an emergency veterinarian in your area if:

  • You are unable to stop the bleeding.
  • The wound is large or cuts deeper than skin level.
  • You think the injury is a puncture wound.
  • Any injury involving a joint.
  • Any time your horse’s movement is significantly impaired.
  • Any eye trauma.
  • You suspect that there might be more damage than you can see or internal damage.
  • You are unable to safely treat the horse yourself.
  • You are unsure of the appropriate treatment or how to perform it properly.

Treatment

Whether you are sure you can treat an injury yourself, or need to care for an injured horse until help arrives, stopping the flow of blood from any wound should be high priority. Clean the wound thoroughly and use clean cloth to stop the bleeding.

Once bleeding is stopped double check that all wounds are free of debris and clean before you begin dressing them. Use an antiseptic to aid in cleansing. Apply an ointment and a protective bandage, making sure the pressure is even.

For blunt trauma and inflammation, apply cold water or a cold compress to reduce swelling.

Being Prepared

It is important that you are prepared for incidents before they occur. Educate yourself on animal health and first aid, many local companies offer classes. Keep a well-stocked equine first aid kit in case you should need it.