It’s May, which means it’s time to celebrate National Pet Month! One of the many ways to observe is to take action and promote your favorite pet-related causes, such as advocating for adoption and supporting companion animal organizations. During May, there are also a couple weeks set aside just for some worthy causes.
Puppy Mill Action Week
May 6th is the start of Puppy Mill Action Week, an event organized by Humane Society International. HSI has rescued many dogs over the years from puppy mills, and they need our help too! Every May, before Mother’s Day, they set up some goals that anyone can join in on and make a difference in this important cause.
Monday 5/8: Pledge
HSI asks for everyone participating to sign their pledge, which outlines the basic things we can do as consumers, and as private citizens (it mentions Canada, but the principle applies here too). The first step is the easiest!
Tuesday 5/9: Share with Friends
Now that you’ve signed the pledge, tell the world! Letting your friends know that you participated can get them interested, and then they’ll spread the message too!
Wednesday 5/10: Tell the Press
HSI recommends getting the word out to your local newspapers and media as well. They have a sample Letter to the Editor on their website that can be used.
Thursday 5/11: Donate
Donations can be far more effective than simple awareness. HSI does have a web store where you can make a donation as a gift for someone (Mother’s Day is coming up after all). There are also a number of other group’s who help fight against puppy mills, such as the ASPCA and North Shore Animal League, who are always accepting donations as well.
Friday 5/12: Support Your Favorite Stores
One of the best things we can do is try to talk to our neighborhood pet stores directly. HSI and HSUS have resources available for talking to store managers about being a puppy-friendly pet store. They also maintain lists of stores who have already signed the pledge, which can be handy if you want to support specific stores who are already on board!
Be Kind to Animals Week
That week also happens to be Be Kind to Animals Week, which is run by American Humane. It almost falls on the same days, as it starts on May 7th and runs through May 13th. It’s a little broader than just celebrating our pets, and it’s a great cause that AH has been running for over a century! They have a pledge as well, which features such goals as shopping for humanely made animal products, supporting wildlife conservation, and adopting from shelters.
Be sure to check out their website, they have a wide assortment of resources availble. They have quick guides on responsible pet ownership, wildlife “Dos and Don’ts,” and how to report animal abuse. They even have teaching sheets catered for each grade level from preschool to fifth grade! They would of course love for their website and pledge to be shared on social media, so feel free to do your part and spread the word!