Social media has become an important tool in how the world communicates these days, and a general way of life for most. It creates a smaller world, where people you know from a distance are part of your everyday life. This network brings people together, and allows us to help one another in ways that weren't so easy before. It also creates a bond between people over common interests and is a great way to get to know others—including animals.
Many animal shelters and rescue organizations are using social media to their advantage. It helps spread information about adoptable pets to far reaches that they may not have been able to access in the past. When used appropriately, social media can be a priceless asset, as it automatically enlists the public as promoters. People see a cute photo of a dog who needs a home, and they can instantly share it with everyone they are connected with.
Promoting Shelter Pets for Adoption
Through social media, people can post photos, spread the love, and share rescue tales that can help get homeless pets placed in their forever homes. When people read an interesting story about a special needs cat, for instance, they can help get that cat adopted with the simple click of a button. Even the most cantankerous of cats can have his 15 minutes of fame. Just look at Mr. Biggles, an “utter bastard of a cat” whose adoption listing went viral thanks to the cunning of a rescue group out of Australia.
Thank Dog I Am Out Rescue Society uses social media as its primary adoption and promotional tool. On the group’s Instagram account, you can view hundreds of posts of adoptable dogs, success stories, and adoption events. Its Facebook page offers immediate contact and chat capabilities, offering help to any dog who needs it. You can also follow rescue organizations like this to stay up-to-date on their most recent events and stories. And, again, you can share posts with all of your friends to help these pets get adopted.
Some shelters are creatively attracting potential adopters by posting background stories and fun photographs. The MSPCA Boston Adoption Center uses Facebook to post pictures and bios of its available adoptable pets. The group is able to share heartwarming stories of animals who may have special needs or disabilities, and reach people worldwide thanks to social media.
There is no easier way to reach the masses of strangers of this world than to use social media. It is a network of unlimited potential that can be used for so many good reasons. One “like” or “share” can reach hundreds, if not thousands, of people in a way that grassroots promotion could never do. Not to mention, a clever marketing campaign has the potential to go viral. Many shelters and rescue organization have used this to their advantage, posting photos of pets dressed up, creating enticing and intriguing bios, and helping so many animals touch the hearts and lives of people worldwide.
Natasha Feduik is a licensed veterinary technician with Garden City Park Animal Hospital in New York, where she has been practicing for 10 years. Natasha received her degree in veterinary technology from Purdue University. Natasha has two dogs, a cat, and three birds at home and is passionate about helping people take the best possible care of their animal companions.