Sabriena and I are basically huge animal lovers. I like to think we’re not misguided, I (and my wife, for the most part) understand there’s a circle of life and try not to interfere. I’m an animal welfarist, I think we’ve got an obligation to ensure we don’t cause undue hurt to anything and that that feat gets progressively harder as our civilization expands.
So one of our goals when we started our company was to have a portion of the profits go towards helping animals in some way, most likely through our local shelter. This, in addition to our donations to Open Source, is part of our goal of running a “company with a soul”.
Since we’re not quite there yet – we’re still pouring all profits back into growth – I decided to donate a bit of time and some of our own money instead. I found almost $15 in coins the last time we did “spring cleaning” in our bedroom and office room, so I poured it all in a baggie and took it to the store. I grabbed a bag of cat food (since they already have a bulk supplier for dog food I guess), some litter, some bleach… trying to think of all the things they were requesting for donations.
The checkout lady, who usually hates us, was a surprisingly good sport about me counting out almost fifteen bucks in coins on the barcode scanner. I didn’t particularly care if she wasn’t going to be, because this old lady is usually excessively nasty to us every time we go in there, and it was for a good cause.
So I took our modest contribution in and talked to one of the managers about donating some time. I signed the release form, then the next day (yesterday) I helped clean out all the dog kennels as well as the last of the cats. They’re trying their best to be no-kill, which is easier for me (I don’t have to worry about my judgement lapsing and a cute dog ending up in the back of my car on his last day) and maybe when we start making real financial donations we can make the difference between 100% no kill and trying their best.
We’re probably also going to do a website for them, at the moment they just use PetFinder but they’d also like a site that’s a little more informative. On the whole though, going out there and spending time with homeless animals to be really good for me. If you ever find yourself getting mad at your pets for the silliest of things, I definitely recommend spending some time at your local animal shelter – you’ll come home a good bit more appreciative of your pets, I’m sure.