BEFORE YOU GET STARTED
1. Contact your local shelter and see if there is anything they need in particular. Find out how many dogs and cats they are sheltering at the moment and if any have specific needs or wants. Also, it’s useful to make sure they accept homemade toys before you begin crafting.
2. Use as many recycled materials as you possibly can. Collect materials from around your home or ask family and friends to keep a look out for anything they have that might be useful. Keep in mind that your materials should be thick and durable and able to be turned into a dog or cat toy simply.
3. Be sure to think about your materials carefully. Remember to avoid making anything that is too small and could cause the shelter animal to choke. If you are using nails, be sure to assemble your toy well and don’t leave anything sharp sticking out that could be dangerous.
4. Think about hosting a “shelter toy crafting day” for your friends and family. Ask people to bring materials and set up a work area where you can collectively craft as many toys as possible to donate to more animals. The more you make, the more happy animals there will be.
ONCE YOU’RE READY TO DROP OFF…
1. Pack your toys and get them ready to drop off at the shelter. Combine all of your items in a basket or tote bag. Remember, these baskets and bags can also be re-used by the shelter!
2. Think about where you will donate your toys. Talk about the different products that you are donating and what they will be used for. Who needs them most? Discuss the idea of the donations allowing animals to live a warmer and more comfortable life. Make it a meaningful task.
3. Write a card to accompany the donation. Allow your kids to understand exactly what they are donating and why they are doing it. Write a card that explains what you hope your donation will do for those animals receiving it and include a message to the animals.