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No act of kindness,
No matter how small,
is ever wasted.
Walk A Dog at the Ranch
We've got something special at HLSPCA: dog walking trails. Not a lot of shelters have this luxury. Our pups are indeed lucky, they get to sniff the ground and smell all that the good earth has to offer. They get to interact with wildlife such as birds, deers, rabbits and the occasional skunk or snake. This luxury normalizes their world and reacquaints them back to their intrinsic behaviors. We are also very fortunate to have a group of volunteers who maintain our walking trails such that it is safe not only for our dogs, but for the volunteers as well. The trails encircle our property with side trails that cross in and out amongst the main trail, so you could walk a quarter mile or much more. We need dog walkers. Some of our new pups act like they've never been on a leash, but over time with the consistency of walking they come to love and look forward to their daily walks. With benefits of this daily and sometimes rigorous exercise, they return to home base, their pens, in a calm and happy state. We are doing a good service by getting them use to a routine, the walk and the leash, all good things for their future families.
We hold adoption events at various locations around our region, from the Hill Country Galleria to the Verizon store out in Marble Falls and all along Highway 71. We need volunteers to assist in introducing our dogs to the general public, which involves folks with dog-handling skills. Certainly we take care of our dogs ensuring that they are safe, watered and well-behaved. But of greater importance, we also have to watch out for the welfare of the public when meeting our pups, particularly when small excited children are meeting a dog for the first time. See our Places We Go to learn more about where we go to host events.
Join our cause to save homeless dogs in Central Texas
Ways to Volunteer
HLSPCA hosts fundraising events throughout the year. Ask any nonprofit organization, fundraising is really important, it's challenging and requires a lot of organization, dedication and just plain spunk. We are not like some organizations that get to raise money all year long and then at year-end distribute those precious funds to those in need. Nope, we are funding a 24x7 shelter operation for rescued dogs, 365 days a year. We raise funds directly and specifically to benefit our dogs and we need those funds to operate the kennel; it all goes to our bottom line. So volunteers helping on these events are important and special people to us. In many instances, we bring out some of our dogs to these events, in which case we need dog handlers to oversee our pups in public places. See our Save The Date: Annual Fundraisers.
Be A PlayPal at the Ranch
Our dogs have active daily schedules. They like a routine and come to find security in one. The pups spend their days outside in our large outdoor pens, where they get fed, play with other dogs, work on manners, and are taken out for leashed walks on our trails twice a day. Some of our volunteers no longer prefer to walk a dog on our trails, but still want to interact with them at the ranch. Come on out, we very much need your help! It is critically important that dogs interact with as many people as possible during their life with us, it's called socialization. We are gaining their confidence by teaching them that humans are good 'animals' and they do not need to be fearful or anxious about being around people.
What work needs to be done in their pens? A lot. You can walk them on the leash to get them accustomed to it, making a trip around the large pen. Call them from a distance to get them to come to you, "Come!" Connect with them by getting the dog to look at you. Play with them, practice basic manner commands, "Sit", "Stay", maybe even "Down". Get them used to being touched by a human, just as a veterinarian would do. Roll 'em over, rub 'em down, run your hands down their back and legs. Stick your fingers in between their toes, in their ears, in their mouth (careful). Put 'em in your lap, give 'em a hug. Oh come on...you can even give them a kiss (side mouth please) because the truth is..we all do it! Let them know that they are part of our family. The best thing for them is to have at least 30 quality minutes or more a couple of times a day with a dedicated human, one on one. Do you really think we can get that covered without your help? No way. Don't underestimate this activity.
THIS IS IMPORTANT STUFF.
The value of touch and canine interaction with humans is highly documented as beneficial to dogs. And let's just be honest here, it does us good too! Another benefit of regular interaction with our canine family, is that you get to share the euphoria with other volunteers when we hear that one of our family has found their forever home. Adoption is a homerun, a touchdown and it's more fun to share. This is a great way to volunteer, enjoying with kids as well. But wait a minute! We also think children are pretty darn important. Please read our policy regarding volunteering with children in our Volunteer Section: Children and Dogs.
Copyright@2017 Highland Lakes SPCA P.O. Box 1275 Marble Falls, Texas 78654 830-693-0569 | To rescue, rehabilitate and secure loving and healthy forever homes for homeless dogs.