Friday, December 2, 2011

Help shelter animals have a happy holiday!

Ever since I got my two kitties this past summer I have had a soft spot in my heart for shelter animals. I wish they all could have a loving home, but since some can't and my home is not big enough for more pets, the next best thing I can do is to support the agencies that work to provide care and shelter for those awaiting a forever home.

Over 50% of Americans buy their pets presents on Christmas (, myself included. Sadly, many shelters animals do not receive anything for Christmas. Shelters usually rely on donations to feed, house, and care for the animals, and those donations often leave little room for things like toys and treats. Three years ago the elves over at Santa Paws Drive sought to help change that.

Santa Paws Drive is the dream of Dorian Wagner, founder of Together with her elves they have created and maintained the first-ever online Christmas toy drive dedicated to pets. The mission of Santa Paws Drive is to bring holiday cheer to shelter animals around the world. "We know pets with homes are often showered with gifts and treats for Christmas, and we believe that shelter animals deserve a little holiday love, too," (

The program collects donations online in the form of cash donations or toys/treat donations. The organization then distributes the donations to needy shelters around the world. Their ultimate hope is of course that each of the animals in these shelters can find a wonderful forever home. But until that happens they want to make sure that each animals gets to wake up on Christmas morning to toys and treats. In the past 2 years Santa Paws Drive has managed to raise over $15,000 in toys, treats, and donations, and helped to support 12 shelters worldwide.

This year Santa Paws Drive is focusing on 6 shelters and rescues that help special needs animals. Sadly many of these animals are considered unadoptable even though they are loving, wonderful cats and dogs that deserve as much love as any other pet. These animals include black dogs and cats, FIV+ cats, blind cats, senior pets and retired greyhounds. Read about this year's shelters and learn about the special animals Santa Paws Drive is trying to help!

So how can you help? There are several options. The first and easiest way is to make a cash or toy/treat donation right on the Santa Paws Drive donation page You can choose to purchase either a specific toy or treat for a dog or cat, or make a cash donation. Donation options start at just $1, and every single dollar helps. Another way to help is to consider placing a banner or widget on your blog. There are several designs to choose from, so you can pick one that works best for your site. Santa Paws Drive also holds paw-ties on Twitter to help raise money and support for the cause. Check out the list of events to join in on the next paw-ty! There are always lots of laughs, fun, and prizes to win!

Every animal deserves lots of love, attention and kindness. That should not change if they have a home or not. Join Santa Paws Drive in helping to provide shelter animals with a Happy Holiday!