Helping Those Who Help Themselves

Contrast with the LHS.  A bright clean building, with all the dogs housed indoors, and lots of nice fenced in space for volunteers to walk the dogs outside.  Volunteers?  Yes-sir-ree.  The LHS has a very well publicized volunteer program--the first Monday of every month you can go for orientation and then you're all set to come walk, feed, and socialize the animals.  Further, you can't just walk in off the street and adopt.  The application process requires proof that you're allowed to have an animal where you live, proof that you have a veterinarian, and is generally about like applying for a job (which makes sense, taking care of an animal is a job). 

One of the reasons I suspect they are able to do so much?  They do lots of smart fund raising. 

Every year in August they have their "Pawsible Dream" dinner and auction.  I haven't been fortunate enough to be able to go, but I've heard great things.  They also hold several smaller fund raisers throughout the year like Santa Paws and Mutt'n'Strut.  At each of those events, all the local dog related businesses (dog walkers, groomers, pet stores, etc.) rent booth space and the participants pay an entry fee.  And--because of good advertising--the events tend to be very well attended.  The line of walkers at Mutt'n'Strut this past Spring stretched for several blocks (at $25 per dog), and likewise, people were queuing up to get pictures taken with Santa (at $10 a shot and a donation in kind (food, kitty litter, cleaning supplies, etc.) to get in the door). 

Would I have donated money to the LHS this year without events like these?  Well, I certainly would have wanted to...and that good thought might have even made it onto my calendar for next payday...really though...eh, there's a 50/50 chance I would have just forgotten about it.  But give me a day that I get to go out with my dogs and have a good time seeing all the other dogs and people we know--I'll definitely be there. 

Which goes to show, it's always ever-so-much easier to help those who are willing to be innovative in helping themselves.