Where can I  Volunteer  with Pets  activities  locally

Where can I Volunteer with Pets activities locally

As animal lovers, we often try our best to help animals in need. Be it feeding strays we meet or just adopting a pet instead of buying one, we’re happy to help make their day. While all that is great, why not we go a step further? Volunteer work is not something  new and it exists in many ways. Here’s a quick guide to the whats, wheres and hows of  volunteering for the animals.

Let’s start with what is volunteering. Volunteering is largely understood as willing work with no pay. Meaning, your time and energy spent with those sweet creatures will not be paid for. Instead, there are other benefits of volunteering with animals. It reduces one’s blood pressure and reduces happy hormones. It gives you experience in handling and caring for animals so you know what to expect when you get a pet of your own. The minimum age to volunteer is 11, but volunteers below the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult (above 18 years of age). The age limit may differ from shelter to shelter, so make sure to call and inquire about it before fixating on one shelter. After all, there are so many to choose from! One shelter that implements this particular age restriction is the SPCA Selangor’s E.R.A. Centre. For more information, you can visit their website www.spca.org.my.

 So what exactly would one do as a volunteer? Well, the possibilities are endless! We know what you’re thinking: “I don’t have any experience or knowledge. I can’t volunteer.” That’s where you’re wrong, ‘cause you can volunteer! A lot of the activities are pretty basic pet-care tasks like feeding, walks, cleaning and general housekeeping activities. As a volunteer, you will also assist the public in finding their purr-fect pet to take home. However, if you do have experience in such areas, that would be great as it will be easier for tasks like socialising the animals. Experienced groomers are also very much welcomed to keep the animals at the shelter well kempt and free of external parasites that can hide in matted fur. Speaking of which, be sure to wear appropriate clothing when you go to volunteer. A spare change of clothes will also be necessary as the job can get wet and messy. Also, maybe don’t wear your RM400 jeans? Perhaps a pair of shorts or track pants instead.

If you already have a pet, you can volunteer with them too. Ever head of therapy dogs? Well, those exist to comfort other animals too! Just get your dog certified for pet therapy so they can volunteer too! Animal shelters take in abandoned animals, abused animals, strays and so on. These animals most probably have lived hardships before the shelter took them in, so they could be really traumatised. Animals that have been poked or cut, could be terrified at the sight of almost anything sharp, making it hard for vaccine shots and grooming. This is where your therapy dog can come in. Sometimes these poor creatures just need some comfort that they aren’t able to get from humans. Your doggo may be just what they need. Also, animals with a history of abuse take time to warm up to us hoomans. However, they still need to socialise. Your dog’s presence could help nudge them out of their shell.

“Where can I volunteer?” We’re getting to that. There are multiple places where you can volunteer. PAWS Malaysia in Subang is one of them. With a total of over 500 dogs and cats and 12 staff members, PAWS has done wonders for the animals in their care thanks to their volunteers. Call them at 03-7846 1087 to make an appointment to volunteer. For those who prefer volunteering with dogs, you can try Second Chance Animal Society in Hulu Langat. Here, you can choose to feed or even bathe dogs. If you’re feeling creative, maybe give painting their dog kennels a shot. S.I. Home Shelter houses cats and dogs, some of which are special needs furbabies. They need help in cleaning the compound, caring for the animals and administering medications (PSSST! This is where that experience can come in handy!). Finally, SPCA branches nationwide also have volunteer opportunities from dog walking to feeding. Visit their website www.spca.org.my and look up the volunteer work for the branch closest to you.  

Please take note that with the current circumstances, animal shelters are taking strict precaution in order to play their part in preventing the widespread of Covid-19. Be sure to wear a mask and contact the shelters you plan to volunteer at to familiarise with their procedures and prepare yourself before heading there. Call or visit their site to make an appointment as it can avoid any complications, especially since the shelters only accommodate a certain number of volunteers per time slot. Don’t forget to wear your mask!

Volunteering is a responsibility and commitment of its own. Think hard before jumping at the first shot at spending time with animals in the name of volunteerism. We agree that time spent with animals is wonderful, but it isn’t all fun and games either. Be prepared mentally and physically as it can be just about as tiring as it is enjoyable. Also, don’t worry if you can’t find a shelter near you where you can help out. Volunteering does not have to be in a shelter with 20 other people and 75 animals. In fact, it can be as simple as walking your elderly neighbour’s dog on the daily with no charge simply because your neighbour doesn’t have the energy to do so. It just has to come from a loving and willing heart. Happy volunteering! 

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