There's lots of ways YOU can help animals in rescue, and a lot of animals needing our help - so let's get started!
Volunteering as an animal fosterer is a very rewarding and ‘hands-on’ way to help rescues.
As a foster carer you take on the responsibility of giving an animal a temporary home. This helps rescues to reduce costs, avoiding kennels and catteries, and many animals feel much more comfortable in a home environment.
Whilst the animal is in your care you can assess his/her character and temperament and help the rescue to find a good home.
Homecheckers play a vital role in rescue.
They visit prospective adopters on behalf of animal rescues to chat with the adopters about adoption and their previous animal experience.
Homecheckers make sure that the home is safe and suitable for the animal they’re hoping to adopt.
Logistics is a huge part of rescue!
Animals need transport for a range of reasons, such as moving from a home or kennels in to rescue care, moving from a rescue to a foster home, transport to and from the vets etc.
If you have a little time to spare, a license and a vehicle – you have everything you need to start transporting to help animals!
Other ways you can help animal rescues...
There’s lots of other ways to help rescues too.
- flea treatment
You can help rescues to raise funds
There’ lots of ways to raise funds for animal rescues, and often the most unusual ideas draw the best attention, so feel free to post on the forum if you have any suggestions for new fundraising ideas, we’d love to hear them!
- Browse the fundraising & appeals section on our forum where rescues post their latest appeals and events
- Check out the animal rescue events calendar to see if there’s any events happening in your area, then you can offer your hands-on support or attend the event and take part in the fundraising activites
- Find a rescue nearby and contact them about fundraising in your local area
- Join our ‘Monthly Kitty’ for rescues where we send donations to an RHU rescue chosen at random each month
When an animal is coming in to rescue, either from a home or from kennels or some other type of care, sometimes rescues need assistance in finding out more about the animal before they can be sure that they can help, and/or so that they can be better prepared.
When helping with an assessment for a dog for example - you'll visit the dog, usually in a home, and make a note of all of their reactions such as how he/she behaves when you arrive (is he/she calm, excited, pushy, aggressive, barking etc.) and how he/she reacts with various things like a ball, a treat, basic commands like sit, stay etc., how does the dog behave on a lead, and (if possible and safe to test) how does the dog react to other animals either in the home or whilst out on a walk.
The rescue or pound helper that has requested the assessment will usually provide a form for you to fill in with all the different points included.
They may sometimes ask for an experienced assessor if they believe the dog might be a bit of a handful or have any temperament problems, but this isn't normally the case and most dogs are safe to visit even if you're new to it all.
- Word of mouth – get talking to people in your community! Talk to neighbours, local trainers, vets, kennels etc.
- Put up posters at your local vets, pet shops, kennels, newsagents, supermarkets, hair dressers etc. Visit the downloads section to download our posters and leaflets
- Share posts on Twitter and Facebook – it’s amazing how online campaigns can grab people’s attention, and by sharing our appeals and messages you could help to save lives! RHU at Twitter, RHU Facebook page, RHU Facebook group
Rescues often need help with tasks that can be done right from your desk, such as:
- updating websites
- writing letters
- designing posters
- crossposting appeals on to websites and forums
- social networking
- recruiting volunteers
- making videos
And if you’ve got any other ideas on ways you can help you’re welcome to post about it on the forum. We’d love to hear them!
Our members regularly post links to petitions about animal welfare issues, and your signature can really help to make a difference.
The more people that sign the petitions, the more notice the authorities have to take, especially since the UK government have recently brought in the rule that if an e-petition receives 100,000 signatures it can be debated in the House of Commons.
After you’ve signed a petition you can also share it on Twitter, Facebook, by email etc. and encourage other people to sign.
Visit the forum to see animal welfare petitions currently needing our support.