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Dog Tested. Dog Approved. Traveling with Your Furry Friends!

Road Trips with Best Friends!

If you follow I Love Rescue Animals on twitter or facebook, then you have probably seen us post pictures of our adventures traveling with our pups. Ash and I love to travel, especially when it means going anywhere with our three boys. We’re lucky in that all of our dogs love to ride in the car, and they are wonderful on even the longest road trip (we’ve moved cross-country twice and they took it all in stride).

One of our favorite things to do is go camping. Last year, we took all the pups on a camping trip in the Ozarks and had an absolute blast. They loved it too, though in our tiny car, it was a pretty tight squeeze. I think it’s one of the reasons that Ash and I want to own a Subaru someday. Having a car with space enough for us, the pups, our camping gear, and all their camping gear (they have their own pup tent!) would be a dream come true. Especially if they got to test drive the vehicle first.

Dog Test. Dog Approved. Licensed to Drive!

But they can’t test drive it without having a license! Well hey guess what – they have an app for that! Check out the Subaru Facebook App! You can check out videos from Subaru’s “Dog Tested. Dog Approved” campaign, as well as create a license for your very own furry driver! Look, even Spunky as has one!


Go check out the app and make one for your own pup and share it with us in the comments (but don’t forget to come up with a fun address just for your pup – don’t use your real one!). We’d love to see what your cute furry driver looks like. And if you have any questions, don’t forget to ask the expert on the Subaru app! Now that your dog is licensed to drive, where are you headed?

Giveaway Time!

Who doesn’t love dogs AND giveaways? Enter the Rafflecopter and you could win a $300 or $150 Visa Gift Card. Everyone must like Subaru’s Facebook page to enter, but the other 4 entries are optional. So enter and see what happens! The winners will be announced within 48 hours after the raffle closes (tonight!).

Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

This post is sponsored by Subaru. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about the Dog Tested. Dog Approved.™ campaign, but, as always, I Love Rescue Animals only shares news for things we love and support – and we’ve been wanting a Subaru long before this post!

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How Animal People Prepare to Go Anywhere (And Letting the Furkids Run the Show)

Who’s Running the Show?

Here in the ILRA household, our furkids run the show. For everything! When we move into a new house, guess who gets the nicest bedroom with all the windows and the best views of the squirrels and birds. I’ll give you a hint: not us! Guess who sets our schedule and makes us leave fun events so we can get home in time for dinner. Here’s another hint: not us! We vacuum every single day and yet the fur keeps coming. We go through cases upon cases and bags upon bags of pet food and still they want more! The dogs have almost as many clothes as we do! Even the rats always got Christmas presents! We can’t go anywhere without people knowing we have a menagerie either because, well, you know: How Animal People Prepare to Go Anywhere


The Dream Car

And who, ultimately, is behind the cars we want to drive? You don’t need another hint, right? We don’t want a sports car! Our dream car, quite seriously, is a Subaru Forester. Why? So we can grab the dogs, throw some camping gear in the back and go spend the weekend at a state park without having to cram stuff into every last tiny crevice of my tiny car. Trust me, with 3 dogs and all their bowls, food, leashes, toys, hiking bags, seat belts and even a pop-up kennel, there’s barely any room to fit Nikki and I in there! Some people may think we’re crazy. In fact, I think most people do. But other animal people, I know, can totally relate to why we let our kids run our lives. If they could personally choose their own vehicle, I’m sure we’d let them do that too.

Pretty sure I know what car they’d pick out too. Picking Out a New Car

In a couple weeks we’ll also talk about some cool new apps on the Subaru Facebook page so look for that! Trust me, I’ve already been having lots of fun playing with them so I know you will too!

This post is sponsored by Subaru. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about the Dog Tested. Dog Approved.™ campaign, but, as always, I Love Rescue Animals only shares news for things we love and support – and we’ve been wanting a Subaru long before this post!

Five Free Alternatives to ChipIn for Animal Rescue

If you’ve got your nose to the ground in the online animal rescue world, you’ll probably have heard the cries of outrage over the shutting down of ChipIn, the popular free fundraising tool that has allowed animal rescuers – both individuals and organizations – to raise money for the care and love of animals. Over a year ago, Chipin stopped offering support for its much-loved widget, so maybe it shouldn’t surprise us that they were bought out and shut down. Still, it’s sad, especially without any clear alternatives to turn to.

Thankfully, when I put a call out to Twitter, I came across a few good sites that might just be what we’re looking for. So without further ado, here are five free alternatives to ChipIn for animal rescue.

Five Alternatives to ChipIn

PayPal Labs Widget


For: Everyone!
What: Paypal’s nifty donation widget created by their in-beta PayPal Labs.
Pros: Customizable to adapt to your brand, extremely easy to set-up, links right to your Paypal account so no extra fees from a third party.
Cons: If you set up payment options in the dropdown, donors can’t change the amount on the next screen. If you don’t set up payment options, the dropdown is empty and useless.
My Thoughts: I’m currently using it over on Snailbird for my own fundraiser, and it’s pretty nice. I liked that it was super easy to set-up and I was able to make it look nice.
Where: PayPal Labs



For: Everyone!
What: Free online fundraising tool open to all projects.
Pros: Looks easy to customize, no website fees, super easy to set up, easy to share on social media, uses PayPal or WePay.
Cons: So far I haven’t run across anything. Let me know if you do so I can update this! I haven’t used the widget so I’m not sure if there are any bugs with it.
My Thoughts: YouCaring seems to be the answer to the ChipIn issue. And they’ve recognized it – I found out about them straight from their twitter source when I asked. I’m guessing they’re going to become pretty popular.

Original Fundraising Widget


For: Everyone!
What: Exactly what it is.
Pros: Seems pretty straight forward, looks like they have some customizing options, no fees.
Cons: The design is somewhat lacking and I’m not sure HOW customizable some of the options are. I’m not a fan of the overall design of the widgets either.
My Thoughts: Looks like it could work, though like I said before, I’m put off by the designs. They may be more customizable than they look though and if you’re not a picky designer like me, it will probably work for you.
Where: Online Fundraising Widget



For: Everyone!
What: A popular fundraising website for personal and nonprofits.
Pros: It’s pretty popular, straight-forward, easy to customize and integrate into your WordPress site (the site actually has a WP plugin for download), keeps track of your stats and metrics, allows you to run your campaign straight form your own site with the plugin, hooks up with PayPal and WePay.
Cons: HEFTY fees – 5% from every payment goes straight to them. That’s on top of the PayPal and WePay fees already. This is really the only con, but it’s big enough to stop me from using it.
My Thoughts: That 5% fee is probably one of the biggest I’ve seen in online fundraising – but they’ve got so many users that it doesn’t surprise me. Still, I’d think twice before using this site, even if their metrics ARE an amazing asset to any campaign.



For: Everyone!
What: A nifty WordPress plugin.
Pros: Integrates right into your WordPress, easy to customize, links straight to PayPal, no fees, nice simple design, easy to use.
Cons: Not sure of any – it doesn’t have an exterior page unless you make one yourself. And since it’s a WordPress plugin, you’d have to update it yourself & make sure it’s compatible with your version of WP. And it’s only for WordPress.
My Thoughts: I like this. Since I’m an avid WordPress user, this one could be pretty nifty and I’ll probably use it in the future.
Where: WordPress Plugins

Mashable also has a great roundup of fundraising tools for official nonprofit organizations so be sure to check that out as well.

I’m sure there are more alternatives out there for animal rescue folks, but these are just a few I’ve run across in the last few days. I would love to hear if you have experience with any of these and any others you’d like to share! I hope this helps as we scramble to find a replacement for ChipIn. Good luck!