Foster or Adopt & Save a Life

Dogs Rescue shelters

This two-part action kit provides resources and examples of ways to promote shelter dogs in order to increase their chances of adoption. In Part 1, we give creative ideas and advice for promoting individual dogs to help get them into good new homes. Highlighting the unique characteristics of a dog can make all the difference in getting that animal adopted. Part 2 offers practical tips for putting on adoption events. Holding adoption events periodically can really help increase a shelter’s adoption rate.

This kit shows how you and your community can make a big difference in the lives of shelter animals, especially pit-bull-terrier-type dogs, who often need some extra help getting adopted because of the stereotypes and myths that surround them. By promoting these dogs for adoption, you can educate potential adopters and show them what wonderful companion animals these dogs can be.

Table of Contents

Part 1: Promoting individual dogs for adoption

This section gives tips and ideas for showcasing individual dogs to improve their chances of adoption. Promoting individual dogs for adoption doesn’t have to be restricted to bringing them to adoption events. You’ll also want to use some of the following ideas for promoting dogs at the shelter, over the Internet and when taking adoptable dogs out into the community.

1. Make sure the dogs look snazzy.

When you have a job interview, you know it’s important to look your best. The way you present yourself can make or break the deal. Presenting a dog as an adoption prospect is similar to a job interview, so make sure the dogs are clean, well groomed and look their best, whether you’re taking photographs or video of them, or showing them at an adoption event. The dogs will feel better, and that will come across in their demeanor. Also, whenever adoptable dogs are out in public, make sure they’re dressed in colorful “Adopt Me” vests or bandanas to let everyone know they’re looking for homes.

2. Create doggie calling cards and flyers.

Calling cards and flyers are another way to showcase individual dogs and promote them for adoption. You can create calling cards yourself and print them out on card stock, available at office supply stores. On the cards (which can be about the size of a business card), include the dog’s photo, gender, age, shelter ID number, the name of shelter, the address, an email address, and a phone number. The cards can be handed out when volunteers are out in public with the dogs. You can also place the cards at the shelter reception area, plus carry them with you so you can hand them out wherever you go.

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