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Recycling Old Towels & Linens
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Recycling Old Towels & Linens
What does one do with old sheets (w/holes in them) and old
towels?? We have too many rags and not enough space and
would like to pass along to a place that could use them. I
believe the SPCA used to take stuff like this, but not sure
I don't know if they take sheets, but local wildife rehab
centers are often in need of old towels and pillow cases.
They are used as bedding for the animals and for general
clean-up. Try contacting the wildlife hospital at the
Lindsay Wildlife Museum in Walnut Creek, or Wildcare in San
I'm pretty certain most animal shelters, or rescue
organizations will take sheets and towels. Call Milo
Foundation, ARF, East Bay SPCA,...They're all in need.
Thanks for asking. anon
I recently brought a big bag of old sheets & towels to the
Berkeley Humane Society on 9th St & they happily took my
donation. reduce, reuse, recycle
Oakland Animal Services is ALWAYS looking for donations of
towels, blankets, quilts, bathmats, small rugs, and flannel
sheets to be used as dog bedding. Most of the dogs do not
have beds to elevate them off the concrete floors, so the
staff folds up towels and the like to create a soft place
for the dogs to lie.
For directions and hours see: www.oaklandanimalservices.org
I am wondering if anyone has recommendations of how or where to dispose of or
donate old/used bed pillows. I hate to throw them away, but am trying to par
down and don't want to hang onto them forever. Much appreciated for any
I just donated some old blankets and t-shirts to the Oakland Zoo
education center for animal enrichment activities. You could see if
they would take old pillows also.
How about your local Humane Society or animal rescue? An old pillow
would make a very comfy bed for a cat or small dog.
I have a bunch of old clothes, towels and sheets that are too
worn out to use or give away. My mother tells me that when she
was a kid, the rag man used to come by and collect old clothes
and material for recycling. I would love to find a use for
these things, as I don't want to simply throw them in the trash
and I don't have the space to store them. If any of you can
suggest a place to bring them for recycling -- or if you have
any other ideas for what to do with them -- that would be great.
Thanks so much --
I'm not sure about the clothes or sheets, but the East Bay SPCA can always use
towels for making cozy beds in the cages. You can drop them off at the
8323 Baldwin Street
Oakland, CA 94602
Dogs for the Blind up in Marin County appreciates towels for washing and drying the
dogs there. Used towels are just fine. www.guidedogs.com
you can donate worn sheets, towels, etc to bay area animal
shelters, who will use (and re-use!) them to give homeless cats
soft bedding. speaking for the san francisco spca- I can say
that old washcloths are not big enough to be useful, and please
only machine-washable fabrics. You can get a donation receipt
for tax purposes, as well as knowing you are helping the animals!
My favorite resource for questions like this is
www.stopwaste.org - you can get all sorts of info on recycling
and environmentally concious products and services. Two
suggestions would be to contact the following organizations. At
garage sales we've had there's always been a good demand for old
sheets and towels as people use them for rags, drop cloths,
etc., so the following groups might have a similar need or can
direct you elsewhere.
East Bay Depot for Creative Reuse 6713 San Pablo Ave., (510) 547-
SCRAP = (415) 647-1746
1. Even if they are too worn for human use, animal shelters may
welcome the towels (and possibly other textiles).
2. I can't guarantee that they will, in fact, be recycled, but I
know Goodwill industries does accept textile scrap at many of its
locations. According to their official web site, ''... some member
Goodwills recycle old clothing scraps into industrial wipes
(cleaning cloths) for industrial buyers''. I believe they may also
sell it as mixed textile scrap for low-quality fill (carpet
padding, padded mailing envelopes, etc.) I generally put them in
a large bag clearly labelled ''TEXTILE SCRAP'', drop them at the
Goodwill trailer at the El Cerrito Recycling Center, and hope for
The Oakland SPCA can always use clean rags for animal care.
I've given them several bags full over the past year through a
neighbor who volunteers there. You can call the SPCA for
details, or email me and I'll put you in touch with my neighbor
if you like.
I'm not sure about the clothes (I've got a few bags myself),
but most animal shelters, rescue groups, etc., would gladly
take the towels and sheets. I''ve donated some to the East Bay
Humane Society and the SF SPCA, and I'm sure Milo, Hopalong,
ARF, and almost any other such organization could use them.
Towels are always needed after oil spills to help clean birds
and other wildlife, so you may check with some wildlife or bird
rescue/rehab places as well (eg. Lindsay Wildlife, Internat'l.
Bird Rescue in Berkeley at Aquatic Park).
this page was last updated: Jun 4, 2013
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