Animal shelters can be a stressful environment for companion animals. Stress compromises immunity and normal behavior, so learn how to combat and reduce stress to increase the welfare of your shelter.
Resources and Articles
From the Magazine
Done properly, group housing can produce happier cats, delighted visitors, and more adoptions. Learn what you need to know before you start your own colony room.
Did you know that clickers can be used to benefit cats as well as dogs? A handful of volunteers, armed with clickers, fresh treats, and a few simple instructions, can reduce feline stress and bring shelter cats out of their shells.
While the subject of catnip has provoked the occasional heated discussion on shelter listservs over the years, the experts interviewed for this story agreed that, for the majority of cats, there's nothing to ponder: Life is much more interesting with catnip.
Most shelters weren't built with the needs of little dogs in mind, but there are steps that staff and volunteers can take that will make the environment much better for them. One shelter director created a special area just for the little guys 'Smallville' that resulted in remarkable behavior improvements.
Making a shelter dog's life richer can be as simple as smearing some peanut butter on a rubber toy. Even if you're pressed for time, there are easy ways to spice up your dogs' daily routines through environmental enrichment.
Dr. Chris Duke of the Bienville Medical Center in Mississippi talks about his community's emotional aftershocks from Katrina, and how residual pet and owner stresses flow into one another.
Policies & Programs
The shelter facility and the housing there-in has implications far beyond the shelter walls. The design of the facility will impact disease levels, behavioral health, staffing needs and the daily cost of care (and therefore how much time and money is left over for other important programs).