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5 Creative Animal Rescue Fundraising Ideas

By Lance Trebesch May 28, 2018

As anyone with a furry friend knows, they are little balls of love, loyalty, and fun. Everyone should have one. Or two. Or four. That said, many are looking for new homes at animal shelters and with rescue groups. Though adopting them all isn’t possible (unless you’ve got more land and money than HRH), supporting the charities who look after them until families are found is the next best thing.

Long on adorable dogs and cats, animal welfare groups are equally short on funds. Whether you’re a volunteer, run a rescue, or simply want to help animal homes keep doing their good work, efforts that help raise funds, pet food, and supplies are hugely impactful.

By their very nature, dogs and cats in need inspire giving and open hearts. Make the most of your money-raising efforts with an equally irresistible animal fundraiser. Help yours stand out and draw a crowd with one of our favourite animal charity fundraiser ideas.

Animal Rescue Fundraising Ideas

1.Pups on Parade

Costumes on dogs and cats always make a splash. Host a parade in which the best-dressed pet wins a fun prize. You can come up with any reason for them to dress up, really. In honour of a recent royal wedding or the Royal Ascot (they must wear their best hats!), summer solstice (boho doggies, anyone?), Halloween, Easter, Christmas…anything will do!  Get pet businesses to sign on to offer their wears, with a portion of sales going to your cause. Host a raffle during the event, ask attendees to bring a bag of dry food…there’s any number of ways to turn this event into a smash fundraiser!

2. Dog Show…Pedigrees not Required

One can see fancy dogs strutting their stuff at Crufts, but what about classes for the dog and owner who look most alike? Or silliest trick? Or best howler? Put together a dog show with all sorts of fun categories. Post flyers, send out postcards, share on social media—make sure the whole community knows! Ask for a small donation for entry and attendance, hold a raffle, and offer pet (as well as human) baked goods for sale.

3. Pet Portrait Day

Ask a local photographer or two to donate their services and set up a studio either at a shelter, park, or other dog-friendly place. Organise props, have refreshments, and ask for a small donation in return for lovely, professional photographs. This one is especially great because you can also have the photographer snap shots of some of your rescue’s up-for-adoption pets. The funny, cute, and personable results are a powerful tool to help get those pets adopted!

4. Get Primary Schools Involved

Children and pets—they’re a match made in heaven. The idea in this community outreach event is to get classrooms in a local school to partner with a shelter pet. The dog or cat (or both!) visit them and become that class’s “pet” for the fundraiser. The kids then raise donations of pet food, supplies, and funds for their assigned dog or cat. It’s a wonderful fundraiser, especially since it engages children and teaches them a bit about animal care and giving back.

5. Partner with a Pub or Coffee Shop

Partner with a pet-friendly watering hole for a dining (or drinking) for pounds event. During the evening, participants can socialize and enjoy a nibble with their pet, with a percentage of the proceeds going toward your animal shelter or rescue. You can even coordinate a collection for dry pet food and supplies to take place at the same time.