Be The Change Extravaganza Starts NOW!

Thank you all for everything. I got a call at 4 in the morning that my grandmother died in the early hours, peacefully and pain free. I know she is somewhere good and she would rather me be out doing something good than sitting in a corner crying. I know this because she told me that herself in no uncertain terms. This one’s for you, gram, even if you are a cat person.

There is one and only one real message I want everyone to understand from today:

You matter in this world.

You have a gift to give that will make the world a better place. If you ask me what that is, I’m going to turn into my grandmother and say “How the heck should I know? Sheesh!” But you have something to contribute. Everyone does.

I have heard from so many people this week who wrote me about some great idea or another but- there’s always the but- “it doesn’t seem like enough” and then manage to talk themselves out of doing it.

C’mon here, people. We all have lives. No one expects you to drop your life to go create a non-profit with a 4 million dollar operating budget or single handedly revolutionize shelter medicine. If you did manage to accomplish that this week, good god, I bow to you.

The rest of us are mere mortal beings, who are taking today to do one good thing and put that out there in the universe. We are going to fill the pet blogosphere with our stories and ideas and things we are doing and link to each other and be amazed at how much we are undervaluing our own contributions while being so impressed with what everyone else is doing.

So go ahead and tell me what you’re up to, big, small, anything. I will post all the links below throughout the day, and I encourage all you bloggers to do the same! (If you posted links on an earlier blog post, I’ll try to find them but feel free to post them again in the comments here!)

This One Wild Life sums up the challenge and shares some ways to participate.

George The Duck gives some ideas for anipals to help and discusses his work with the Anipal Times

Romeo the Cat tells us about Pilots and Paws, a great program that helps rescued pets travel to forever homes

Fetching Tags and Paco Collars have teamed up to start a program called “Stray Gold” that rescue organizations can join to get money back from purchases at these fabulous two e-tailerss.

My Life in Words shares ideas about how to donate and talks about Pets Without Parents.

Being The Change You Want To See LOTS of ideas here, if you are stumped! A summary from AboutVetMed’s resident veterinary expert.

Blogpaws Recap and a Challenge for YOU. Yes, you. A little background on this effort.

Doggie Stylish: I am being the change I want to see

Will My Dog Hate Me reminds everyone that even the broke and busy can do something. AND she donated her BlogPaws gift basket to a silent auction for rescue!

Marg’s Pets talks about Pets Without Parents and the importance of spay/neuter

Sebastian the Cat talks from a cat’s perspective on the importance of adoption and shares some slides of pets needing forever homes.

Dog Spelled Forward needs your vote to win an “Inspiring Rescue Stories” contest- if he wins the proceeds are going to Pets Without Parents!

K9Cuisine admits what many of you have felt: I want to do something but I have no idea what. And then he realizes: figuring it out is the whole point.

Covered in Cat Hair features several of the wonderful kitties from Pets Without Parents awaiting forever homes.

BlogPaws discusses Pet Peace of Mind- trying to win a $250K grant to help hospice patients take care of their pets. This one is obviously personal to me at the moment and voting is free. PLEASE take a minute to go and vote.

Champion of My Heart is working on an idea to help encourage positive training methods for pets

YourDailyCute is volunteering time in her local shelter based on donations today- the more we donate the more she volunteers! I love this idea! PLUS she has another list of participating blogs.

Doctors Foster Smith has a comment-a-thon on their blog- they are making donations based on you making comments! Go comment!!

A GIVEAWAY at Boulder Dog with yummy treats!

And ANOTHER giveaway: Eco-Tec dog bed courtesy of Pet-super-store.com, over at Moxie Paws!

The talented BZTAT is creating a special shirt in honor of Be the Change.

Biscuits by Lambchop is using their Facebook Fan page to get the word out about shelter pooches.

Dr. Di’s Vetblog encourages everyone to contribute and mentions some goings-on in her own neck of the woods, which I am thinking is Wisconsin? Somewhere very, very cold. :)

Petside talks about Be the Change and lists ways to participate over the blogosphere.

Of Cow’s Tails and Chew Toys is donating 25% of all proceeds from a toy in her Etsy shop for a local rescue

Calming Collars offers rescues a coupon code that gives them a discount and results in a matching donation.

The Girl Blogger talks about her experiences as a kitty foster mom

Beulah the Bulldog‘s mom is running a marathon with Team in Training to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma society (lymphoma research is a cause dear to me due to my experience with Emmett!)

Paws-and-Effect is raising funds for the Blind Cat Rescue and Sanctuary

Daily Dog Scoop lends a paw with Surf Dog Ricochet to put an end to canine cancer

Fido and Wino lead off with a ROAR- Rescue Owners Are Rockin’! Join the club!

Animal Artist is donating artwork to benefit rescue

Surf Dog Ricochet is doing a virtual walk for the Morris Animal Foundation’s Canine Cancer Campaign

Filed: Be The Change
  • http://georgetheduck.com George the Duck

    I blogged about what anipals and other folks can do to help, and what I do. It’s not that $4 million non-profit, but I know it helps.
    http://georgetheduck.com/2010/04/be-the-change/

  • http://www.margsanimals.com/blogs Marg

    I just think this is such a great things to do. I have written a post about Be the Change Challenge. I am very interested in helping the spay and neuter clinics because if we can keep them going, then we will have fewer homeless animals. My post is at http://www.margsanimals.com/blogs

  • http://www.romeothecat.com Romeo the Cat

    Hai! Here is my “Be da Change” Post: http://su.pr/8n0Vxd s
    xoxo to you all!

  • http://www.fetchingtags.net Jen
  • http://bosoxamy.blogspot.com Amy Palmer

    Thanks Dr. V! I visited your site a lot this week getting ready for my #BeTheChange post. Here’s what I came up with: http://tinyurl.com/y6gz2nd

  • http://AboutVetMed.com AboutVetMed

    ::: waves to Romeo :::

    I have two: one on About.com: Being The Change You Want To SeeLOTS of ideas here, if you are stumped! ;-)
    and
    Blogpaws Recap and a Challenge for YOU. Yes, you.A little background on this effort and some great DrV photos! Superstar ✩

    • http://AboutVetMed.com AboutVetMed

      Hi there George – didn’t see you when I posted. Sorry for the formatting trouble, but at least the links work. Great job on BeTheChange, everyone!

  • Melissa

    Just got all of the legal paperwork completed so I can start taking my Golden Madison to the local county library for reading to a therapy dog visits!!!!! May 22 is our first day :)

  • http://www.doggiestylish.com/store/blog/ Karen Friesecke

    here is my “be the change” blog post for today.

    http://www.doggiestylish.com/store/2010/04/i-am-being-the-change-i-want-to-see/

  • http://willmydoghateme.com Edie

    Here’s my Be the Change post, urging the busy and the broke to start small: http://willmydoghateme.com/pet-charities/paying-blogpaws-forward-being-the-change

    I’m also urging folks on Twitter to follow the #bethechange hashtag for #followfriday and check out what all the other tweeters and bloggers are up to.

  • http://seabasscat.blogspot.com Sebastian Palmer

    I did a “Be the Change” post about adopting pets. I’m one of the lucky ones who has found a forever home, I want others to be just as lucky as me! http://tinyurl.com/y4939sp

  • Kim

    We’ll be walking for the local SPCA tomorrow. The dogs don’t know about it yet ;) We raised $290 so far (including checks and cash not on the web total). I wish I could say we planned it that way but it was just really good timing.

    • http://www.pawcurious.com Dr. V

      Is that tomorrow? You should share the link. :)

      I like it even better that you didn’t do it because of some external motivator. This is something you wanted to do on your own and that is why I adore you. :D

      • Kim

        Thanks! The feeling is quite mutual!

        First, saw your update and I’m so sorry.

        Second, yup – the walk is this weekend! Our dogs tend to get overwhelmed in massive crowds so we’ll see how long it lasts. There are 3000 people and 1000 dogs expected. They have done so much with the previous walks and turned their shelter from a place from where I would go away in tears (it was jail-like) to a place where animals are truly happy, healthy and loved until their forever owners find them. Here’s the main site for the walk: http://www.spcawake.org/site/TR/CommunityFundraising/General?fr_id=1080&pg=entry

        If anyone wants my fundraising site, please DM me on twitter (the pic should give it away)!

  • Pikachu

    For the last several years I have volunteered at our local shelter,on adoption days, in the shelter cleaning and feeding, playing . I donate food and supplies to the shelter and every Christmas I volunteer and take Pet / Santa Pictures with proceeds going to the shelter. You can imagine how many people want their pets pic with Santa.Its so cute that we even have little costumes for the pets if they want . I have met so many dedicated people doing this , the volunteerism is infectious.:-)

  • http://drveale.blogspot.com/ Diane

    Thanks so much for the Be The Change challenge today. What a GREAT idea! I put some info about your blog in my blog so if I got anything wrong, just let me know. Have a great day all bloggers!
    http://drveale.blogspot.com

  • http://www.yourdailycute.com Your Daily Cute

    Sorry to hear about your Gram. I don’t have any brilliant words, just happy you got to say bye to each other. :)

    That said — yay for this post! We ALL matter. I love checking out all the blogs today. What a whirlwind idea you had!

  • Tonya

    I don’t have a grand plan, but I am going to visit those who posted above and donate a little to anyone who has a “donate” button! I guess that’s my one small thing. :)

  • http://dearprudie.wordpress.com Ashley

    25% of the profits from the denim squeaky balls I sell on Etsy will be donated to the Humane Society of Knox County, a local shelter. More detail on my blog: http://dearprudie.wordpress.com/2010/04/16/be-the-change/

  • Dr. Sarah

    Well, you know exactly what I do, and I think your readers have gotten some exposure to it as well a couple of times. Regarding my personal involvement, though, I volunteer my time to HSTJ to set up quarantine, vaccination, and parasite treatment procedures for animals coming across from the streets of Tijuana to be adopted into loving homes here in the United States in order to ensure they are healthy prior to adoption. I volunteer at sterilization clinics in TJ to try to cut down on the population of street animals that suffer from infectious diseases, parasites, and nutritional maladies who are both a threat to each other and to human health. I ensure the health of animals in foster care on the U.S. side of the border. I sometimes facilitate the transport and work-up on tough cases across the border so they can get help from some of the local specialists here in San Diego. And after reading that description, I think I just realized why I’m so tired all the time. LOL

    Link: http://www.friendsofhstj.org/

    I agree with you — one person can make an extraordinary difference just by being a part of something larger than yourself. When you save the life of one animal, it makes all the difference in the world to that animal, and that is enough to say you made a profound difference. Even with all the work I do, sometimes it doesn’t feel like it is enough to address the enormous problems we face with street animals down in Mexico, but in the neighborhoods we’re working in we can see differences begin to add up!

    Kudos to everyone else on here that makes a difference in any way they can.

  • http://ThisOneWildLife.com Kim Clune

    Thinking of you today, for all that you must be feeling. Loss of a loved one, joy at the success of this project, and everything in-between. Thank you for posting my link and inspiring me to push beyond my comfort zone. When I think of you and this project, I am truly grateful and feel connected in some small way. For that reason, I also feel sad for your loss. Hugs.

  • http://www.calmingcollars.com Deb Mendez

    I work with rescue groups and shelters to set up their own “coupon code” for my Calming Collars website. Using the code gets an individual a nice discount and I make a matching donation to the organization. It is a win/win/win.

    Any interested groups, feel free to contact me (dmendez at mendezgroup dot com) and I’ll get your group signed up.

  • http://www.petside.com Petside Team

    “Be the Change” post on petside.com – http://www.petside.com/petsideblog/2010/04/be-the-change-challenge—stre.php – calling to our community to join forces and spread the word and give anything they can. There is a strength in numbers!

  • http://thegirlblogger.com Adri

    Here’s my blog post on being a foster parent and hoping to get pets into forever homes :) Glad I can help the cause even though I don’t have a pet blog!

    http://thegirlblogger.com/2010/04/16/be-the-change/

  • http://www.biscuitsbylambchop.com Annette Frey

    Hmm, don’t know where my response went.

    I talk about what we’re doing here http://bit.ly/BBL-bchange hoping to get people to volunteer at their local shelter, really get to know a pup and tell us about them. We will feature them and when they’re adopted, send them home with healthy treats to start their new life off right, plus we’ll send treats for the dogs at their shelter still waiting for a home. We hope to give the featured pups more exposure too, with some real insight to them from the volunteers.

    • http://www.biscuitsbylambchop.com Annette Frey

      Oops, I had commented in a previous spot.

      Love what everyone is doing! Surf Dog Ricochet is fabulous and we wish her a speedier recovery!

  • http://pages.teamintraining.org/epa/cmc10/earonson Beulah the Dog @snortlysnrtface on twitter

    My Human Mom is running a marathon in a week and a half to raise money to fight lymphoma and leukemia. These cancers affect A LOT of dogs and cats and the cures and treatments that help people help us a lot too. You can visit her site and donate if you want to help!!!

  • Lisa W

    While studying for a graduate certificate in Animal Studies, I’m in the very early stages of starting a small non-profit with the double duty of providing a sanctuary for senior dogs and doggy hospice in honor of my beautiful Bailey. I was so lucky during her last days in that I called my boss and said “I think Bailey’s dying, so you’re not going to see me for a few days” and he just said “okay.” So many many people can’t do that, so I want an actual place for them to bring their dogs where someone will love and care for them, and the families can spend whatever time there that they have available.

    I can’t do it large-scale (I’m not sure how I’m going to get it off the ground at all yet), but I’ve at least started telling some people, doing some research, and asking people who do either sanctuary or hospice for advice. Apparently no one does exactly what I want to do, but there are people who are close enough and who are incredibly supportive.

    It will be called Bailey’s Grace.

    In the meantime, I’m also going to help my local rescue group during their adopt-a-thons.

    I’m so busy I can hardly breathe, but it’s moving me closer to my goal of working full-time with dogs.

    • Lisa W

      And BTW, I’m such an idiot — I meant to start off with condolences. So sorry to hear about your grandmother. :-(

  • lawgeekgurl

    I am sorry to hear about your grandmother, and happy you had a chance to visit with her in her last days and hope you are comforted by what sounds like her indomintable spirit. Second, I wanted to say I am so inspired by you and the other Blog Paws members’ enthusiasm and “do a little every day, do what you can” atttitude. It makes me a little teary, to be honest. It’s nice to know there are people who understand how much love you get back from giving of yourself to make life better for others (including ones with four paws).

  • http://dailydogscoop.blogspot.com/ Sccop

    Sorry I am a little late–I was traveling all day! Can you add me here? http://dailydogscoop.blogspot.com/2010/04/lend-paw-and-be-change.html

    Really fantastic job organizing today!!!

  • http://www.fidoandwino.com Shauna (Fido & Wino blog)

    I’ve been thinking this idea through for awhile now- Be the Change seems like a great time to launch it! :)

    Today I launched on my blog: R.O.A.R. Squad – Rescue Owners Are Rockin’

    For the next year I will be collecting photos of rescue owners and their pets from all walks of life from across Canada and the United States and posting them on my blog- Fido & Wino.

    Read about how to take part: http://fidoandwino.com/roar_squad/
    Read the launching blog post: http://fidoandwino.com/2010/04/16/launch-r-o-a-r-squad-rescue-owners-are-rockin/
    Check out the first, official R.O.A.R. Squad member (my husband :)): http://fidoandwino.com/2010/04/16/r-o-a-r-squad-john-and-his-dog-kayloo/

    What I need from rescue owners: Please send me a picture of you and your rescue pet (dog, cat, snake, whatever!). Let’s band together AMAZING rescue owners out there into one, unstoppable, SUPER HERO of a team.

    I hope to hear from you!

  • http://portraitsofanimals.wordpress.com/ animalartist

    Better late than never, storms and power outages! I’m posting Saturday instead what I do and hope to inspire others to do the same–donate artwork, certificates for custom portraits and merchandise I’ve created for others to purchase. I’ll also be linking to articles I’ve written about simple ways to help your local shelters and rescues.

    And upcoming on May 1 I’ll be hosting my Peaches’ 100th birthday with a celebration of older cats and other pets, why we should adopt them, how much we love them and how we can best care for them. I’ll write articles as well as other bloggers, all cross-linked and indexed for easy reference. I’ll also be blog-auctioning a signed print of my painting Peaches and Peonies and donating the proceeds to FosterCat in Pittsburgh, an organization that rehomes many, many adult, older and senior cats through its foster home program.

  • http://portraitsofanimals.wordpress.com/ animalartist

    P.S. I’m so sad to hear about your grandmother, but so glad you had one who told you to go out and do and not to grieve…and we like cat people here!

  • http://www.jansfunnyfarm.com jansfunnyfarm

    Sorry to learn about your grandmother.

  • http://moxiepaws.com/ Christine

    “A life well lived is never forgotten”…think this applies to your grandmother. With heartfelt condolences.

  • http://www.pricebonus.com/ Michelle

    Better late than never, storms and power outages! I’m posting Saturday instead what I do and hope to inspire others to do the same–donate artwork, certificates for custom portraits and merchandise I’ve created for others to purchase. I’ll also be linking to articles I’ve written about simple ways to help your local shelters and rescues.

    And upcoming on May 1 I’ll be hosting my Peaches’ 100th birthday with a celebration of older cats and other pets, why we should adopt them, how much we love them and how we can best care for them. I’ll write articles as well as other bloggers, all cross-linked and indexed for easy reference. I’ll also be blog-auctioning a signed print of my painting Peaches and Peonies and donating the proceeds to FosterCat in Pittsburgh, an organization that rehomes many, many adult, older and senior cats through its foster home program.