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Animal Welfare Association of New Jersey

Trash to Treasure

Enriching the Lives of Shelter Pets

We all know shelter life can be stressful. The best way to reduce stress is to provide our animals with outlets for their natural behaviors and give them something fun to do. There are a million simple everyday items that can be transformed into enrichment toys. These are great projects or donation drives for kids and youth groups.

It is important that we have a constant supply of these items so that not a day goes by where a kitten or cat, dog or puppy, or rabbit or small animal sits bored in their cages. It is also important that these items arrive disinfected and ready to use.

WE NEED YOUR HELP!

The easiest way to have the greatest impact would be to collect just one or two items (bottle caps and tissue boxes for instance) and bring in a dozen or so of each at a time.

YOU CAN TURN JUST ABOUT ANYTHING INTO AN ENRICHMENT ITEM! EVEN YOUR:

  • Shower curtain rings
  • Paper bags
  • Mirrors and wind chimes
  • Socks
  • Strainers (colanders)
  • Golf and ping pong balls
  • Clean, empty pill bottles
  • New paint rollers
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Pom-pom craft balls
  • Unused straws
  • Herbs like Catnip and Lavender
  • Milk jugs and cartons
  • Plastic kiddie pools
  • Large containers with shaker tops
  • Basketballs
  • Soccer balls
  • Broth

Drop by with your items and meet the animals you are helping!