BY BRANDY TEMPLETON
Iredell County Animal Services is searching for volunteers to help shelter pups.
The shelter staff is organizing playgroups in an effort to socialize the dogs and help them find permanent homes. Employees and volunteers will receive specialized training to promote play therapy with dogs.
During the playgroups, shelter dogs will be divided into playgroups according to personality types. While being monitored, they will get to interact and play with other dogs in a safe and stimulating environment.
Tracy Dixon, foster and volunteer coordinator for Iredell Animal Services, is super excited about the new program.
“This will help the dogs get their stress out,” she said. “Our hope is it helps the dogs become more adoptable.”
These dogs come to the shelter for several reasons. Some are strays and others have been surrendered for a variety of reasons.
Dixon wants them to feel loved and enjoy their time at the shelter.
“We want them to be dogs,” she said. “Playgroups will help them express their personality.”
The makeup of the playgroups will change weekly as dogs are adopted and new ones are taken in at the shelter.
Volunteers, who can sign up for sessions that fit their schedules, will be a big part of the playgroups.
“We will use volunteers ages 14 and up,” Dixon said. “However, those ages 14 to 16 will need a parent or guardian onsite while volunteering.”
It takes a while to complete the volunteer process, so Dixon encourages those interested in volunteering to apply soon.
The shelter is also seeking donations of food or pet supplies, including Martingale dog collars.
For information, please contact Tracy Dixon at 704-878-5424 or visit Iredell County Animal Services online at https://www.co.iredell.nc.us/149/Animal-Services-Control.