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Making the most out of Facebook posts about animals

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Facebook is a place where so much good can be done for animals. Whether your mission is finding Fluffy, who is lost or placing Fido in a new home before he is taken to the pound or maybe even to get him out of a bad living situation, through networking and sharing, many people can be made aware of a pet's plight. Often it is a Facebook share that makes all the difference.

That is, of course, as long as the original post contains the necessary information.

Many of us will share a post for an animal automatically without realizing what might be missing from it. It is a reaction. Just as many of us might try to help an animal we know is in need by creating a post without thinking through whether or not we have provided the tools necessary to do the most good. Unless a minimum of information exists in the original post (think along the lines of who, what, why, where and when), it becomes little more than a dead end that started out with the best of intentions.

We have to consider that it won't only be the people who know us that will see and/or share our cry for help. To say "private message me for/with info" is great if your post will be limited to your immediate circle of friends, but that is not realistic. If someone you are not friends with on Facebook tries to private message you, they either might not be able to at all or their message will go into your "other" inbox, which is something you may not know exists, never mind that you should check it. Fluffy may be found and you will never have a clue.

Posts about lost animals should always include a frequently checked email address or your phone number. Also include a specific location where Fluffy went missing: street, neighborhood, city, state. When did Fluffy get lost? It all matters.

When seeking a new home for a pet, the same ground rules apply. Where is Fido located? Who is the person to contact about Fido? Additionally, is Fido neutered? Up to date with vaccinations? Good with kids or other animals? How old is he? Brief, basic facts will help networking efforts greatly.

Updates can be made to your original post by using the "edit" function and will appear automatically on all the existing shares, keeping everyone up to date and in the know.

Make the most out of such a powerful tool as Facebook by taking a few extra minutes to put together an informative post and you may very well save and/or improve an animal's life. It will certainly be worth your time and effort.

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