Calling all heroic woofs: it’s the perfect time for giving bark to the community. This has been a ruff year, but hey, at least the holidays are coming up! Spread love and cheer with these 5 Denver volunteer opportunities for your pup.
Note: We double checked all COVID details, but pup course we recommend always confirming details in the yikes that is 2020.
In-Person Denver Volunteer Opportunities fur Dogs
1. Blood Donation at Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital Blood Bank
Pup loves bein’ a hero, and right now there’s a nationwide dog blood shortage. To help save someone else’s beloved BFF (best furry fren) at Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital, dogs must be healthy, friendly, 1-6 years old, 55+ pounds, and pup-to-date on all required vaccines and preventatives. Throughout the process, your dog will be treated like a king by a veterinary tech, and get a complimentary nail trim, lots of treats, and a small meal. Call 303-996-1366 for the deets.
2. Children’s Hospital of Aurora Prescription Pet Program
At Children’s Hospital of Aurora, doggie cuddles are just what the doctor ordered! Their Prescription Pet Program trains volunteers and their dogs to bring comfort and healing to hospitalized children and their families. Due to COVID-19, volunteers and specially-trained dogs are visiting patients and their families in the lobby rather than making rounds to patient rooms. Your dog does not need to be registered with a national therapy dog organization, but volunteers and their owners must pass a vigorous screening process with a Children’s Hospital veterinarian. Call their volunteer office at 720-777-6887 for the scoop.
Virtual Denver Volunteer Opportunities for Dogs
3. Denver Veterans Day Virtual Run
Dog bless our veterans! Show your support by virtually participating in the 12th Annual Denver Veterans Day Run any time from Nov. 7-15. Take Mayor Hancock’s suggested route through City Park running trails in downtown Denver or choose your own 5K or 10K adventure, then post your time on their virtual leaderboard. You’ll get a commemorative race t-shirt, race bib, finisher’s medal, and pawesome exercise with your pooch for a good cause. Registration fees help the Colorado Veterans Project.
4. Puppy Raising for Freedom Service Dogs
If your dog is a playful socialite, chances are she’s been puppin’ lonely during COVID times. Your home could be the perfect fit for raising a puppy for Freedom Service Dogs, an organization that trains dogs to serve veterans with PTSD and people with disabilities including autism, traumatic brain injury, muscular dystrophy, and Down syndrome. Puppy raisers attend virtual training courses and are responsible for the puppy’s basic obedience training and socialization for 10 months until pup goes to his fur-ever home. It’s OK if puppy raisers have other pets; they just need to peacefully cohabitate with their puppies-in-training. When things get safer from a COVID perspective, they plan to open up other volunteer opportunities.
5. Therapy Animal Visits with Pet Partners
Everypuppy knows that the emotional connection between dogs and hoomans is magical. In these weird COVID times, Pet Partners aims to recreate and spread that magic virtually by connecting canines to healthcare facilities, schools, and other places in need of some ruv. Humans can join the Pet Partners Facebook Group and submit videos of reading to their dogs, teaching their dog to do tricks, or giving information about their breed and training. Pet Partners picks the best of the best video and sends ‘em on to people who need a smile most right now.
We wanna see pics of all you do-gooders out there makin’ the world a better place, so tag @sidewalkdog. Know of other Denver places to volunteer with your dog? Bark at us in the comments!
Featured photo: @theyshane
Sidewalk Dog’s mission is to help dog parents spend more time with their puppers by discovering and sharing activities they can do and places they can go—together! Sniff out our award-winning newsletter and Instagram, then join our Dog-Friendly Denver Facebook Group.
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