How to Start an Animal Rescue

If you’ve ever considered starting your animal rescue organization, this blog is for you. Many steps and considerations need to be taken before launching an organization of this sort, and we’ll be discussing those in the rest of this post.

What is an Animal Rescue?

“Animal rescue” is typically a term that refers to animal shelters or other organizations that help find homes for stray animals or ones who cannot otherwise fend for themselves. In some cases, it also provides medical needs – paying vet bills, providing food, etc. They may also provide training and a way for homeless animals to interact with other animals, often following an educational program. Sometimes it’s a combination of all of these.

Step by Step Guide to Starting an Animal Rescue

1. Planning

The first and most important thing is formulating a plan. What are you going to do? Start with the answer of whether or not you want to organize formally. If you do, the next question is, “what kind of organization do you want?”

Next, consider how much money you have and how much it will take to launch. Then think about how much time you’ll need to devote yourself.

2. Research

Do some research on animal rescue organizations in your area and elsewhere. This can often involve going on Google Maps, searching for animal rescue organizations around you, and looking at their websites. It doesn’t hurt to ask people who work at other animal rescue organizations as well.

3. Contact People

Start by contacting the local animal rescue in your area. Generally, they are willing to answer any questions you may have and will often have a list of available volunteers. If not, try looking for other area animal rescues on the internet.

dog at shelter looking at camera

4. The Call for Help

Once you’ve reached out to some animal rescue organizations, it’s also a good idea to reach out to anyone else that you think might help or even be interested in information about how an animal rescue organization is put together.

5. Advertise

Once you know what animal rescue organization you want to launch, it’s time to start advertising. This can be difficult since it involves having many people interested in the same cause. However, this is where a lot of word-of-mouth comes into play.

6. Finding a Place

Finding your location will always be one of the most important parts of starting an animal rescue organization. It doesn’t have to be somewhere large, so don’t worry too much about that – make sure it’s somewhere safe and one you can pay for. While you’re at it, you might want to get the word out about the place so that people can visit.

7. Having the Right Tools

In running an animal rescue organization, you need to ensure that you have everything you’ll need. This begins with a couple of key items. First, make sure that you have liability insurance so that if anything goes wrong, your organization isn’t sued, and all of your other hard work is gone.

Another important thing is to have an animal shelter with enough room for multiple animals. This is an important aspect because different animals have different needs, and you need to be able to accommodate those.

dog and human embracing

8. Hiring Employees

While an animal rescue doesn’t necessarily need employees, it can be easier and better if you have some people helping out at your location instead of doing everything yourself. More importantly, it helps offset any liability since you’ll have others with whom any mistakes won’t land squarely on your shoulders. This can also make your animal rescue organization run smoother and provide a more efficient work environment.

9. Donations

Another aspect of running an animal rescue organization is to get donations from organizations and people who know about you and the animals who need help. It’s a good idea to have an online donation page for people to send money if they are interested in helping. If you’re planning on running an organization at the time that you start, you’ll have volunteers that will be able to help with this.

10. Working with the Community

One of the most important aspects of running an animal rescue organization is working with everyone in the community. This includes animal control, local veterinarians, and more. If you run into problems with anyone, try to work with them to find a solution that works best for everyone.

dog at the vet

The Must-Know Challenges When Starting an Animal Rescue

Starting an animal rescue organization is a worthwhile thing to do. However, it’s important to remember that this is not a venture for everyone. Before you go ahead, think of the challenges you might face if you decide to pursue this. In many cases, there is a way around these. These are some of them:

Finding Adequate Resources

The biggest challenge you face when starting an animal rescue is finding the resources needed. This begins with finding the money to keep it running, but it also includes other resources – from food for the animals to a place for them.

dog and cat being friends

Getting Volunteers

Getting people to donate their time and effort to start an animal rescue organization is never easy. It’s an important part of what you’ll be doing, so, if possible, try and find some people who are willing to help you out.

Managing Volunteers

Your volunteers might not always be able to do the tasks you want them to. If this happens, it’s important for you, as the leader of your animal rescue organization, to work with them and find a way to accomplish it. You might also have to develop a system or policies to allow you to delegate tasks. If so, you’ll need to make sure that they can follow them.

Finding Adequate Funding

This is another important aspect of running an animal rescue organization. If you can’t find the resources, it’s difficult for you to run the animal rescue effectively. Find ways for your organization to fundraise and make sure that your inelasticity of supply is low.

Starting an animal rescue organization can be a great way to help out animals. These organizations often rely on volunteers and donations, so you may have to do a lot of fundraising and other duties to make sure that the organization runs smoothly. Don’t worry too much about finding others interested in what you’re doing; make sure you think about all of the challenges you might face when starting an animal rescue organization.