The holiday season has begun. (Let’s not even get into how early it seems to begin nowadays.) The lights and decorations are up, trees are in windows and everyone is frantically shopping for their gifts. In the midst of all this, many people search for real meaning in the holiday season – they want to do something that matters and is not selfish or materialistic. Bless them.
If you are one of those wonderful people, and if you love animals (I assume that you do or you would not be reading our blog in the first place), let me suggest some things that might make this season seem more meaningful. The animals in the care of the Richmond SPCA are totally dependent on us to treat their ailments, give them love and attention and find them good and loving homes that will last for the rest of their lives. The homeless pets in government shelters all over this community, and beyond, need us desperately too. They need us to save them. They need us to remember that, while we may not be seeing them in front of us right at the moment, their lives are at risk and they urgently need us to be able to take them into our care. We can only do so by moving the pets currently into our care quickly into great and loving homes. T’is the season not just to celebrate but to save lives – all the lives we possibly can.
So, what could most give your holidays real meaning? Saving a life or many lives by doing one or more of the following:
- Adopt a pet from the Richmond SPCA and share all the abundance that your family has with a very deserving and grateful new four legged family member and, in so doing, allow us to save another life from a shelter where that other precious life may right now be at risk;
- Sign up at www.richmondspca.org/foster and get trained to become a foster care parent so that, when the holidays are over and we begin our kennel renovation project in January, you can help us by caring for a homeless pet for a few weeks for us;
- Convince someone you know who may be considering buying a pet at the holiday season to adopt from the Richmond SPCA rather than acquiring a pet from a breeder or a pet store and, in so doing, also save another life by allowing us to take a pet from a shelter where his or her life is at risk (see above); and
- Donate generously to the Richmond SPCA – we can only save lives if we have the financial resources to do so. A generous donation that saves animals will do more for your positive feelings about the holidays and yourself than another material thing could ever do. And, while we are at it, consider agreeing with your family and friends who love animals to make donations to the Richmond SPCA instead of exchanging gifts that no one really needs. Give that money so we can save the life of a dog or cat who needs it desperately.
If you will do one, or more than one, of these things, I can promise that you will feel a great sense of personal satisfaction and deep fulfillment. And, you will ensure that sweet loving homeless pets who have no one to depend on but us – meaning the Richmond SPCA and you – will have more holiday seasons in their future, ones with families who love them. And, then, have yourself a truly merry little Christmas.
Robin Robertson Starr is the chief executive officer of the Richmond SPCA. To read her biography or that of our other bloggers, please click here. Before posting a comment, please review our comment guidelines. Please note that our comment policy requires both your first and last name to be used as your screen name.