Here's a unique way to get in the holiday spirit.
You can help those who are down on their luck.
We're not talking about people for this story, but animals without a place to call home.
That's reality for the nearly two hundred animals sheltered at Macon-Bibb Animal Welfare's adoption center.
Why go to work at a place that can sometimes seem so bleak?
"Because I love the animals," says Kennel supervisor John MacWilliams. " I absolutely want to save everybody that comes in here."
Notice he said everybody.
"They are people and that's how we refer to them. Everyone who comes in here gets a name if they don't have one already and that's how they get treated," said MacWilliams.
Some got lucky this year. Over 2000 animals have either been adopted, returned to their owners or taken to a rescue according to MacWilliams. But for some pets, they're still waiting to find their home.
To help them, MacWilliams listed five big needs: doghouses, bedding, towels, blankets, and volunteers.
"It's a short application process (it) takes five minutes. We'll give you a leash and a couple rules and you're good to go," said MacWilliams.
Julia Callahan took him up on his offer. She says the animals lift her spirit every time she visits the shelter.
"You know it's always sad having to leave them but...knowing you're going to come back the next day and knowing you made a difference in the animal's day really makes it worth it," said Callahan.
Those donations don't go unnoticed.
"We work hard and we love this facility and just to know that the community recognizes what we're doing here and is willing to come help us, it just means the world," said MacWilliams.
In the end, some of the most vulnerable get some much needed love.
"Most of them had a really tough life and this is where the buck stops. This is where they're gonna get what they need," said MacWilliams.
Thanks, in part, to donations.
One other thing you can do for the shelter? Don't give pets as gifts. It's a fun gesture but MacWilliams says it can often lead to situations where the new owner and the dog aren't compatible.
He says the best thing to do is to take them to the shelter and let them pick one out.
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