Animal Involvement

Adeline Hoseck, IJ Writer #12

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Getting involved and helping animals has been a passion of mine since I was young. With an intense passion to be a veterinarian, I grew up performing procedures on my stuffed animals, and checking out books about different dog breeds from the library. Growing up I’ve always wanted to help animals in any way I could. My family has always adopted from the Coon Rapids Animal Humane Society, including my dog “Freckles,” (pictured to the below), and my cat “Zeke” (pictured right). The Animal Humane Society is a non-profit organization that helps countless animals.

The Animal Humane Society has been advocating for animals’ health and safety since 1878, with four current Twin Cities adoption centers. Every year they care for more than 23,000 animals in need. They are a non-profit organization that gets most of their money from donations. So how can you get involved in helping these adorable pets? In order to learn more about that exact question, I interviewed Rochelle Benson, the Humane Educator at the Animal Humane Society, via email.

When asked some of the common reasons animals come into the shelter’s care, Benson explained that it can be classified into 3 categories: Surrendering, transfers from other shelters, and strays. Surrendering a pet could mean the family is moving and unable to bring the pet with, someone in the family develops an allergy, or maybe the pet grew sick and the owner couldn’t pay the bills. Adoption rates are fortunately high in Minnesota, so many pets are transferred from southern states like Texas, Oklahoma, and North Carolina. “Just think, most dogs in our shelters have traveled for a day or two straight to become Minnesotans. This is there first time ever seeing snow!” When it comes to strays, the humane society waits five days for the owner to come pick it up, and after that they put the pet up for adoption.

One of the more obvious ways to help a pet, according to Benson, is to adopt. When looking to adopt, one of the things one should consider is researching the animal’s breed to learn about its characteristics and needs. Animals are a huge commitment, and one should think ahead. Benson suggested meeting with them one-on-one to see if they would be a good fit for you.

For those who cannot adopt, or those like me that already have adopted, there are still ways you can help animals. You can sign up to volunteer at any of their locations, as long as you’re 16, and donations are always a huge help. Benson also added that, “Another powerful thing is having people just speak up about the importance of adopting.” Just by using your voice, you can help animals find homes.

Getting involved in helping animals can be as simple as letting people know how great adopting is. The Animal Humane Society’s mission is, “to engage the hearts, hands and minds of the community to help animals,” and you can be a part of helping them.

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Animal Involvement