Helping Rescues & Shelters With the Items in Your Home

Day 5 and 6 of 30 days to the Best Pet Home are all about giving back to rescues and shelters with the items in your home.

You can spend 1 hour, or a few days, going through your household items and provide much-needed donations to your local rescue or shelter.

Step 1: Towels

Rescues and shelters need towels to bathe the pets they have at their facility. Additionally, if your rescue or shelter has an in-house veterinary facility, towels are often used in veterinary hospitals to provide pets with a more secure footing when placed on an exam table.

Step 2: Blankets and Throws

Rescues and shelters use blankets and other throw items as bedding for pets. Having enough blankets and cushions for all the animals in the shelter is very important. It definitely adds a feeling of comfort for a pet as they wait patiently for their forever home. Not to mention, blankets provide warmer shelter for rescues and shelters with outdoor facilities.

Step 3: Pet Beds, Crates & Blankets

Is it time to upgrade to a new pet bed? Do you have an extra crate lying around the house? All gently used crates, pet beds, and blankets can come in handy for rescues and shelters. Not only can they help the animals while they are in the shelter, but it’s also an excellent selling point for volunteers to say that a pet comes with a crate, bed, and blanket, for example. Covering the initial price of many of these items can help with the initial adoption fees and encourage more people to adopt a pet.

Step 4: Extra Leashes & Collars

Do you have extra leashes and collars for your pet? Is it time to downsize to only 3 fashion leashes instead of 7? (I hope I am not alone) If so, rescues and shelters can use these items. It may sound silly, but cute leashes and collars can be used for photo shoots for adoptable pets, and can make them look cute and gentle and, therefore, more adoptable. Not to mention, these items can also provide value for the pet as they are adopted.

Step 5: Donate Extra Bowls, Treats, and Food

If you have recently purchased a new food bowl for your pet, or you received an extra bag of treats from an event, these items can also benefit pets at the shelter.

While many of these items may seem obvious, I have known many people who did not know that you can donate gently used items to rescues and shelters. Just keep in mind that their funds are limited so help in all forms is welcomed.

Appropriate Condition for Donation

  • Many locations prefer that all items are gently used or new.
  • It is wonderful when the items are dropped off freshly laundered or washed.
  • With blankets and towels, I like to cut off any extra strings that are along the edges.

If you are ever unsure of what your local rescue or shelter might want or need, always feel free to call ahead and ask.

Have you previously donated these items to your local rescue or shelter?


Also, to help raise awareness about homeless animals in shelters and rescues, and to support one of my local rescues, Valley Humane Society, I am participating in the Voiceless Challenge. I challenge all of my blog readers to go to and learn more about how you can speak up for homeless animals.

#VoicelessChallenge from Rachel Sheppard on Vimeo.

Helping Local Rescues & Shelters

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3 Comment

  1. Reply
    April 11, 2016 at 8:52 am

    I’m not going to video, but I will donate to Foothills Animal Reacue, a local no kill shelter.
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  2. Reply
    Groovy Goldendoodles
    April 17, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    I feel so stupid!! I take food, treats, leashes, and toys to the local shelter all the time, and I never ever think to take towels. #duh I just keep putting them in plastic bags and bringing them down to the garage for car towels. Great idea – I’m so excited. Thanks friend

  3. Reply
    April 18, 2016 at 9:14 am

    Both of my baby dogs have been rescues. I always donate towels, blankets and sheets that aren’t appropriate for the people homeless shelter but can be used at the animal shelter.

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