1. Volunteer at your local shelter
There are tons of abandoned animals at shelters that are begging for some attention, and you can pet and play with them all you want without having to adopt. Sure, you’ll have to do some cage cleaning or desk duty in the process, but it’s only for a few hours a week — and it’s all worth it when you see the look in those animals’ eyes.
Spending time at the shelter will also keep you up-to-date with all the new pups that come in, so if your friend is thinking of buying a pet from a breeder because she absolutely “needs” to have a Goldendoodle or purebred Havanese, you can let her know she can find a great dog the shelter instead. You’ll be surprised at how many purebred animals end up at animal shelters when people move, lose their pets or just give them up because they were more responsibility than they anticipated.
2. Be the cause
Don’t worry, you don’t have to grab the red paint and stand outside of Neiman Marcus or invade an animal testing lab — phew! You can get more people to find out about the cause you support by sporting a witty bumper sticker or wearing a cool graphic shirt to the gym.
3. Run for charity
Apps like Charity Miles allow you to donate to charity just by doing your daily workout. Every time you go on a run, just open the app and choose the charity you want to support. For every mile you run, they donate $0.25 to that cause. Helloooooo, motivation! You’ll be feeling strong and healthy in no time.
4. Walk the walk
You can make a difference by setting the example with your choices. Visit an animal sanctuary instead of a zoo. The animals are just as cute, and you know they have plenty of room to roam. Their happiness, not the bottom line, is put first at these preserves. Want to see whales up close? Take a boat trip next time you’re in Boston or California to observe them in the wild instead of going to an amusement park that keeps them in a pool.
5. Most importantly, don’t be a pain
No matter how much you care about the animals, don’t become THAT person. You know, the one who harshly judges a friend for ordering a steak while still considering themselves an animal lover. The best way to promote the cause is by helping people understand where you’re coming from, not alienating yourself. Plus, people are more willing to listen to advice from people they actually like, instead of the ones they tolerate with an eye roll.