Tips for Walkers

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Tips for a Healthy Wag-A-Thon for your Pooch
Keep your Wag-a-thon fun and safe for your four-legged best friend. Here’s how:

Build up gradually. Like you, your dog needs to ease into physical activity if they’re not already in shape. If a fast pace is your goal, start with walking and build up to running.

Pup must be into it. Believe it or not, some dogs don’t like to run! Make sure your pooch is enthusiastic about the activity, and keep it at a trot to go the distance.

Watch the weather. Kipling once said, “Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.” Heed these words, and immediately get to shade and provide water if you suspect overheating.

Stay hydrated. Bring water for your dog on a long run or walk. (Don’t let your dog drink from puddles!) Provide water before and after an outing.

Take care of your paws. Examine paws for cuts before and after exercise. If you are out on salty or dirty roads, clean your dog’s paws with a warm, soapy cloth when you get home.

Watch out for the following signs of distress:

 
  • Excessive panting or foaming
  • Glazed eyes
  • Limping

What about the puppies? You shouldn’t run with your dog until they are 14 months or older. Dogs under a year should walk no more than 3 miles per day.

Always check with your veterinarian if you have any concerns. If you’re turning into a serious running team, it’s a good idea to have the doc keep an eye on your pup’s heart, lungs, and joints.



Fundraising Tips and Ideas
Don’t panic! Fundraising can be fun, quick and easy. Here are some ways that you can promote and raise funds for your Wag-a-thon. Just: Send, Post, Ask & Host!

Send

The top, best, #1 way to raise money for your Wag-a-thon is… *drumroll*… by sending e-mail! It’s quick, easy and super effective. Here’s how to get the most bang for your buck:
  • Cast a wide-net! We have instructions on how to import your entire external contact list into your Wag-a-thon fundraising page. The more people you ask, the more likely you are to get a donation.
  • Tell your story! People want to know what you’re doing and why. Explain why you’re supporting Guiding Eyes for the Blind, how much you love your pup and/or how you’re improving your health. Testimonials are key to soliciting support – and don’t be afraid to tug on the heartstrings a little!
  • Hit Resend! Some people will donate after your first ask, but most will need a gentle reminder. Resend emails periodically – especially as you hit your personal milestones.

Post

Social media is a critical tool for online fundraising – and the easiest way to reach a vast network of friends, family, co-workers and casual acquaintances. Here are a few ways that you can maximize your social media fundraising:
  • Post often! There is no shortage of content on social media, and Facebook and Twitter posts can get buried very quickly. Make sure you are reposting your link often so it stays top of mind and top of feed!
  • Auto-post! Your Wag-a-thon fundraising page can auto-post for you every time you receive a donation or hit a milestone. If you need directions, click here.
  • Tag & link! Post a personalized shout-out to each donor. Tag your donor and add their pic for extra emphasis – and include a link to your fundraising page. Your donor will feel appreciated, and his or her followers will learn about your campaign!
  • Don’t forget Insta! If you’re going to use Instagram to post pics and promote your Wag-A-Thon, add your fundraising page URL to your bio and include “link in bio” in every post.

Ask

The most important rule of fundraising is, you have to make the ask! After you’ve finished with your social media and email outreach, how about making a few personal asks face-to-face?
  • Since this is a 26.2 mile Wag-a-thon, ask your friends, family and co-workers to sponsor you per mile. Even better – ask them to double their donation if you and your pup partner complete the Wag-a-thon.
  • Sponsors! Do you know any businesses – big or small – that would support you and Guiding Eyes for the Blind? It’s the best way to get the big bucks!


Team Recruitment Strategies
Are you excited about your Wag-A-Thon? Share your passion and commitment by starting a team! Here are some ways to recruit team members to join you on your Wag:

Social Media & Email Recruitment

It’s simple and effective. With the click of a button, you can reach out to all of your email contacts and friends on social media. Don’t just ask for donations – ask them to join your team.

Sample Facebook Post or E-mail:

Join me and on Team for our Wag-a-thon, a cumulative marathon that we can do anywhere and at our own pace over the month of September. The goal is to hit 26.2 miles by 5/31 and raise funds for Guiding Eyes for the Blind. We’d love for you to join us. Click the link and join our team!
<Link to Team Page >
<TELL YOUR DOG’S STORY OR YOUR REASON FOR SUPPORTING GUIDING EYES FOR THE BLIND >

Sample Tweet:

Join me & my pooch for our #Wagathon, a cumulative marathon that we can do anywhere, at our own pace over the month of September. The goal is to hit 26.2 miles by 5/31 and raise funds for @GuidingEyes. We'd love for you to join us join us.  Click the link and join our team!
<Link to Team Page >

Where to find new teammates:

 
  • Puppy sitters
  • Neighbors
  • Local dog park
  • Running clubs
  • Co-workers
  • Church groups
  • Puppy socializers
  • Local gyms
  • Girl or Boy Scout troops
  • Community organizations (Lions, Kiwanis Club, etc.)
  • Student groups
  • Dog walkers
  • Doggie daycare
  • Pet stores
  • Dog groomers
  • Local track/cross country teams
  • Members of your Puppy Class
  • Fellow puppy raisers


Offline Payment
Download the offline donation form here.

Make checks payable to Guiding Eyes for the Blind:

Mail this form and check to:

Guiding Eyes for the Blind
ATTN: Wag-A-Thon
611 Granite Springs Road
Yorktown Heights, NY 10598