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International Homeless Animals Day 2024: When & What It Is

Written by: Ed Malaker

Last Updated on May 28, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

stray cat with right ear tip clipped

International Homeless Animals Day 2024: When & What It Is

While the world’s problems change daily, one thing that remains constant is the need to address the plight of homeless animals. International Homeless Animals Day, observed annually on the third Saturday in August, which is August 17th this year, serves as a reminder of our responsibility in addressing this global problem.

If you have just heard about this important day and want to learn more about how you can participate, keep reading as we discuss how it got started, what the event entails, and how you can get involved.

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What Is International Homeless Animals Day?

International Homeless Animals Day hopes to shine a spotlight on the millions of animals that roam the streets and shelters, the ones that are often overlooked and forgotten. It’s a day to reflect on the impact of pet overpopulation and the importance of spaying and neutering to prevent the births of animals that won’t be cared for and housed. The problem of homeless animals is a worldwide challenge that International Homeless Animals Day hopes to raise awareness about to encourage action.

Image Credit: Lea Rae, Shutterstock

When Is International Homeless Animals Day?

International Homeless Animals Day occurs on the third Saturday in August each year. In 2023, it fell on August 19, and this year, it will land on August 17.

International Homeless Animals Day Dates

Year Date
2023 August 19
2024 August 17
2025 August 16
2026 August 15
2027 August 21

When did International Homeless Animals Day Start?

International Homeless Animals Day was started in 1992 by the International Society for Animal Rights. It began sponsoring annual adoption events to help raise awareness, which has successfully helped the day become more popular each year. Communities around the world have also started to organize events like adoption fairs and spay/neuter clinics.

The 7 Ways to Participate in International Homeless Animals Day

1. Use Social Media

If you enjoy using social media sites like Instagram, X (Twitter), and Facebook, you can make posts about International Homeless Animals Day to help spread awareness in your community and convince your followers to do the same. You can share information about the day, news about events in your area, and even pictures of your pets to show how happy a well-cared-for pet can be.

2. Educate People

Informing the public about responsible pet ownership, the benefits of spaying and neutering, and the realities faced by homeless animals is crucial. Tell everyone who will listen about International Homeless Animals Day, and try to convince them to do the same.

woman working on her laptop with her cat
Image Credit: Bogdan Sonjachnyj, Shutterstock

3. Share Your Stories

While you are spreading the news about International Homeless Animals Day on social media or with the people you meet in real life, you can also share your personal stories, if you have any, about the joy that you and your pet have received by your providing them with a home, especially if they were a rescue.

4. Adopt

If you have room in your home, one of the best ways that you can celebrate International Homeless Animals Day is to adopt a pet from your local animal shelter. Doing so is in the spirit of the holiday and will help the shelter take on other animals in need.

two women adopting cats at the shelter
Image Credit: BearFotos, Shutterstock

5. Collaborate With Others

If you own a business, you can get together with other businesses in your area to hold an event on International Homeless Animals Day to help educate and raise funds for the animals in need in your area.

6. Donate or Volunteer

Shelters around the world are always in need of a helping hand, so if you have the time to spare on International Homeless Animals Day, volunteering to walk the animals or clean their areas can be a huge help. If you don’t have time, donating funds is also welcome, as it can help pay for someone else to do it or buy supplies.

cat at an animal shelter
Image Credit: JW Design, Shutterstock

7. Get Your Pet Spayed or Neutered

Getting pets spayed or neutered is essential for keeping the animal population down and under control. If you have pets and haven’t done this procedure already, scheduling an appointment with your vet on International Homeless Animals Day can be a great way to participate.

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Tips for Keeping Your Pet Healthy and Safe

  • Regular visits to the vet are vital for maintaining your pet’s health. They can help catch any health issues early and ensure that your pet is up to date on vaccinations and parasite control.
  • Feed your pet a balanced diet suitable for their age, breed, and health status. Choose a brand with real meat like chicken or turkey listed as the first ingredient.
  • Ensure that your pet gets plenty of exercise to help prevent obesity, keep their cardiovascular system healthy, and reduce behavioral problems.
  • Many pets develop dental issues. Regular dental check-ups, brushing their teeth manually with a pet-safe toothpaste, and providing dental chews can help maintain their oral health.
  • Keep your cat indoors, especially if you haven’t gotten them spayed or neutered yet. Letting them out increases the chances of producing more cats and the risk of your pet getting lost and winding up in a shelter.
  • Get your pets set up with a microchip to help increase the chances that you will get them back if they get lost.
  • When traveling, ensure that you safely secure your pet in the vehicle, especially a cat, as they don’t usually like to go for rides and can easily get lost if they run out of the car. Use crates or safety harnesses designed for pets.

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International Homeless Animals Day occurs each year on the third Saturday in August. The International Society for Animal Rights started it in 1992, and it has grown in popularity each year due to its importance in raising awareness about the millions of animals without homes that are living in shelters and on the streets right now all around the world. You can get involved by helping to spread the word on social media and educating people you meet. Adopting a new pet or donating to a local animal shelter are also great ways to participate.

Featured Image Credit: Krishna777, Shutterstock

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