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An Animal Shelter Hosts A Thanksgiving Feast For All The Abandoned Pets Who Deserve Love Too

Photo: Mila Supinskaya Glashchenko / Shutterstock
animal shelter working holding cats next to kennel of cats

Thanksgiving is a time to help the needy. People often donate to food banks or soup kitchens around the holidays. Everyone wants to make sure each person can have the big Thanksgiving dinner they deserve.

We don’t often think about pets, though. One animal shelter is changing that.

A North Carolina animal shelter fed its animals Thanksgiving dinner.

The Hoke County Animal Shelter in North Carolina hosted a Thanksgiving dinner for the animals in the shelter. One of the shelter workers, @wellbehaved1 on TikTok, shared a video of the special occasion.

The video showed a long table set up between the kennels with large dishes of meat, green beans, sweet potatoes, and more. The table was decorated with patterned dishware, flowers, and pumpkins, just like any nice Thanksgiving tablescape. 

   

   

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In the video, shelter workers gave out plates full of food to excited dogs who eagerly dug in. They also had plates of “tuna and shrimp for the kitties.” 

“They deserve all the good things,” the video said. People who stopped to comment agreed. “Thank you for doing this,” one person said. Another wrote, “This is the sweetest thing I’ve ever seen.” A third person chimed in and said, “They deserve so much and more.”

The shelter currently has plenty of pets available for adoption.

On TikTok, the shelter described themselves as “overcrowded.” Wyatt and Sandy, for example, are considered “permanent residents,” with Wyatt included in the Thanksgiving video as the “shelter ambassador.”

   

   

The shelter takes in animals who have been abandoned by their owners.

One heartbreaking video showed a dog waiting at the door for her family to return after spending the first seven years of her life with them. “They don’t understand,” the shelter said of the animals who are abandoned and left behind.

The animals experience an enormous amount of pain and confusion when they lose their homes.

   

   

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There are lots of ways to help animals and shelters during the holiday season.

The holidays can be a difficult time for abandoned animals. People are often so focused on their own families and preparations that it’s easy to forget there are sweet pets out there in need. Fortunately, there are plenty of resources to make helping them a breeze.

Chewy made a list of “25 Creative Ways to Help Pets This Holiday Season.” The list included small, simple tasks like “[making] edible outdoor decorations to feed wildlife” and “[reading] to shelter pets."

animal shelter hosts a Thanksgiving feast for abandoned petsPhoto: LightFieldStudios from Getty Images / Canva Pro

Of course, you can always donate to your local shelters or rescues. Some areas even have pet food banks that could use a helping hand. These organizations are almost always accepting help, from monetary donations to volunteer hours.

Perhaps the most obvious way to help animals and shelters this holiday season, and any time of year, is to adopt a pet. Inviting a new furry friend into your heart and home can change an animal’s life, and yours, for the better.

animal shelter hosts Thanksgiving feast for all the abandoned petsPhoto: Jess Lessard Photography from Getty Images / Canva Pro

If you don’t feel ready to adopt, you can always try fostering a pet instead. According to Chewy, “The holidays can be a tough time at a shelter or rescue with fewer regular volunteers.”

Lending a hand by taking a pet out of the shelter for a while could make a tremendous difference. And, who knows? You might just decide that your holiday visitor belongs with you always.

   

   

The holidays are a difficult, stressful time for everybody, but taking time to recognize those in need, including those with four legs, is a wonderful way to invite the true spirit of the season into your life.

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Mary-Faith Martinez is a writer for YourTango who covers entertainment, news, and human interest topics.