Education and Outreach Help to End Pet Homelessness

The Dumb Friends League believes that humane education plays an essential role in ending pet homelessness and animal suffering, and our small yet mighty team of three is sharing our message throughout communities each month.

Our Humane Education department offers 17 programs at our shelter and throughout the Denver metro and Aurora, Adams, Arapahoe, Douglas and Jefferson County communities on various animal welfare topics. Classes are year-round and divided into day, extended and community programs for students in grades kindergarten through 12, as well as community groups of all ages. Except for youth camps and clubs, which have a nominal fee, most programs have no charge.

“It’s so rewarding to teach these classes,” said Amanda Kludasch, humane education manager. “Whether it’s a 12-year-old going home to his parents to talk about the importance of why their dog should be neutered or a timid 4-year-old boy feeling comfortable enough to pet one of our ambassadogs at the end of a program, it’s the aha moments when you see barriers broken, and you know something changed in their minds about animal welfare.”

One of the most popular programs, DFL 101, also happens to be one of Kludasch’s favorites. The class helps groups understand how the League fits into animal welfare, as well as why do animals end up in shelters, how we help them find new homes, and how people can help homeless pets and horses in our care. Kludasch loves the open-ended questions at the end of the session and believes it’s the program that makes the biggest impact.

On average, the Humane Education team runs between 65 and 85 programs each month. Wow! Whether you’re a teacher looking to schedule a classroom visit, a scout troop hoping to earn requirements toward pet-related badges or a community organization interested in knowing how to stay safe around dogs, we’ve got a program to meet your needs. As part of our humane education program, we also offer camps and teen volunteer opportunities. For more information about our programs, visit ddfl.org/community-education/ or call 720.241.7132 to schedule a lesson.