Local shelters and humane societies are always in need of financial or volunteer assistance and supplies. Crafters are always keeping busy with their favorite type of hobby. In 2012, Sew Doggy Style created National Craft for your Local Shelters Day on July 21st to combine the best of both worlds.
It is designed to be fun and affordable, simple and meaningful. No matter what type of crafting hobby you enjoy: sewing, knitting, crocheting, woodworking, etc. or even if you have no formal “crafting” skill, anyone can make something to donate to your local shelter.
Hale Pet Door is headquartered in Canon City, Colorado, and we interviewed Ann Goldman, owner of Yarned and Dangerous (our local knitting, crocheting, weaving, spinning, and fiber arts store) and Doug Rae, Executive Director of the Fremont County Humane Society to see one example of this special day in action.
Ann Goldman tells us: “What to do when you knit, love animals, and have spare time? You knit cat mats!
Here at our Local Yarn Shop, we get lots of donated yarn. We have many who love to knit but don’t need another hat, scarf, or afghan. So we pair those avid knitters with the donated yarn and the results? 100s of cat mats. We love knitting for our kitties housed at the Humane Society of Fremont County. We’ve been told they love our cat mats. These many cat mats have been turned into hammocks, nests, cocoons, or just nice blankies. It is our joy and pleasure. I found 2 pictures that show off the cats with the mats.
The little one with attitude is Felix. The older cat chilling is Aerosmith. They are available for adoption now. Of course, their mats go home with them.”
Executive Director Doug Rae adds: “The Humane Society of Fremont County relies on private donations on many levels. One such level is when local residents take it upon themselves to do something for the shelter animals. Ann and her gang from Yarned and Dangerous in Canon City regularly knit blankets for the shelter cats. Every cat in the shelter has one of those blankets in their kennel, and when the pet is adopted, the blanket goes home with the new adopter and the cat. One walk through cat adoptions and you’ll see how much the cats love these donated blankets.”
“Dick Ward has been making handmade animal puzzles out of wood for quite some time. A few years back, Dick and his wife Korla came to me with their offer to make puzzles for the shelter so we could sell them and turn the puzzles into cash for the animals. Dick’s puzzles are for sale for $10.00 each in our retail section.”
“Moreover, Dick has a similar set-up with Cup & Cone here in town. Dick provides Cup & Cone with his puzzles and almost every month, the shelter receives a check in the mail from the sales of Dick’s puzzles at Cup & Cone! I have offered to pay for the wood Dick uses for his puzzles, but he politely declines and will not take one penny from the shelter.”
“Deanna Jacobs donates her hand-made jewelry to the shelter. Deanna made this jewelry for a special event the shelter held. After every item sold at that event, Deanna gave the shelter enough of her to jewelry to fill up a large jewelry display in the lobby. All of Deanna’s items, whether it be bracelets or earrings, has something to do with the animals. Like everyone else, Deanna won’t take a penny from the shelter for her donated jewelry.”
What a wonderful testament to the giving spirit of these talented people.
If formal hobbies aren’t your style, you can make simple cat toys out of toilet paper tubes and kleenex boxes; you can make dog toys out of ropes or plastic water bottles; you can make beds and blankets out of old t-shirts and pillows. The ideas are endless.
For some more ideas and instructions on how you can participate in this holiday check out some of the following articles:
Your Craft Skills Can Help Shelter Cats