by Mary Grace Mauneymmauney@mistermigs.com
May is National Pet Month, and today begins the American Humane Association’s Be Kind to Animals Week. It was begun in 1915, and is always the first full week of May. While we believe in being kind to animals all year round of course, here are some extra special things that you can do for our furry (and scaly, and feathery!) friends out there:
For starters, see our post about animal advocacy! http://www.mistermigs.com/national-animal-advocacy-day/
Organize a charity drive in your school or community for animal shelters and rescues.
Make birdhouses and bat-houses.
For kids, a poster contest! http://www.thinkingoutsidethecage.org/site/c.elKWIeOUIhJ6H/b.8922487/k.5CDF/Be_Kind_to_Animals_Week.htm Make a donation to the American Humane Association or other animal-friendly charity.
Apply to the Humane Society’s Urban Wildlife Sanctuary Program to have your property or neighborhood designated as an “Official Urban Wildlife Sanctuary”. They’ll educate you on how to make your home more hospitable to local animals!
If you’d prefer that wild animals keep their distance, be sure to only contact services that will humanely remove and re-locate them, not exterminate them.
Adoption and rescue isn’t just for cats and dogs! I got my hamsters from the animal shelter where I worked, and that same shelter also had guinea pigs, rabbits, ferrets, and even pot-bellied pigs up for adoption on more than one occasion. If you’re in the market for a small mammal, reptile, or bird, don’t go straight to the pet store; instead, do an online search for relevant rescues in your area. Many of these rescues are also willing to facilitate transport across state lines, so don’t give up just because there isn’t one nearby. Much like with puppy mills, small animals are not treated well by pet stores, so it is much better to support a rescue.
Educate others and spread the word!