MISSOULA, Mont. -

The Humane Society of Western Montana gets plenty of donated toys, but they need some items you wouldn't think of right away. 

On their Facebook page they requested peanut butter. It's used as a delicious reward as part of a food toy. Food toys allow dogs and cats to work through a problem or obstacle to get at their treat.

Dogs get frozen peanut butter or cream cheese stuffed inside a rubber toy. When there aren't enough of those to go around, food toys are handmade from old cardboard. They're looking for cardboard donations too. Food toys and games help relieve the boredom and stress animals experience while waiting for a home.

Humane Societies across Montana have a few suggestions on how to help animals in need during the holiday season. Some shelters have a wish list of items they need. Check with the shelters or their website. Often cash is the best donation, since it can be used for many purposes.

Shelters in Kalispell, Missoula, and Bozeman all have ways to donate money online. Items that are often overlooked include everyday items like cleaning supplies.

Shelter volunteers say that the best way to help is to adopt an animal.

For links to a Humane Society in your area, click below:

Bozeman area

Flathead Valley

Missoula/Bitterroot Valley

Butte area