Mars launches animal shelter volunteer program to address urgent crisis
Press Release: March
Mars Petcare, a proud part of the Mars family of brands, recently announced that it is putting its strength and scale as the world’s largest pet care company behind the launch of its largest volunteer program. in shelters. Supporting Mars Petcare’s ambition to end pet homelessness, the program – Service Humans Needed – involves more than 60,000 Mars associates and pet advocates across the United States and the Canada to reciprocate the support pets show us by offering voluntary acts of service to help shelters and pets. in need.
Across North America, shelters are on course to have the worst overcrowding and resource constraints in at least three years, with more than 250,000 dogs and cats in U.S. shelters and 80,000 in Canada having Need help. According to a recent Adopt a Pet survey, nearly 9 in 10 animal shelters and rescue organizations in the United States reported that resource constraints and overcrowding have remained constant or worsened since the first half of 2022.
“As the shelter crisis has grown over the past few months, we have spoken with many partners in the animal welfare community to find out how and where we can best help,” said Silja Schiller-Moumtzidis, Director world of pet shelters and adoptions, Mars Petcare. “The shelter teams work tirelessly to help animals in need. We are delighted that by bringing associates together across Mars in a timely volunteer program, we can provide relief when it is most needed.
To help alleviate some of the resource issues facing shelters, companion animal advocates and pet parents are encouraged to become a “service human” to support pets in their communities across multiple ways, including:
- Volunteer at local animal shelters
- Volunteering in their home adopting and adopting
- Volunteer on their social platforms by sharing adoptable pets on social media
“Our Petcare Purpose – A Better World for Pets – connects and inspires all Mars associates by giving us meaningful opportunities to make a difference in the lives of pets. With a growing shelter crisis, that means uniting all of our associates from our Mars business to step up and support shelters and pets in need,” said Jam Stewart, Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Mars Petcare. provide support, companionship, protection and more. But right now they need us, and through small acts of service, we as a collective community can have a meaningful impact in helping cats and dogs in shelters find their forever homes.
Give back and engage over 60,000 Mars associates
Throughout the year, Mars Petcare and its brands support shelters and pets in need through in-kind and monetary donations. Every year, Mars Pet Nutrition brands, including PEDIGREE and ROYAL CANIN, donate millions of meals to shelter pets in need. The PEDIGREE Foundation, an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established by Mars Petcare in 2008, has awarded more than $10 million in grants to shelters and rescues across the country since its inception. This year, the PEDIGREE Foundation expanded its program efforts for the first time beyond the United States with the launch of the PEDIGREE Foundation Canadian Grants Program which distributes $100,000 in grants to shelters across Canada. The PEDIGREE Foundation will also announce its annual round of US grant recipients before the end of the year.
In 2022 alone, the charitable arms of Mars Veterinary Health – Banfield Foundation and VCA Charities – provided more than $3.2 million in grants to animal welfare organizations to help address veterinary care needs, transportation of shelters and in preparation for adoption; VCA Charities provided 650,000 meals to pets in need; and collectively, the two supported the veterinary care of more than 2,000 pets transported out of shelters at full capacity and into loving homes. The Bow Wow Buddies Foundation is Camp Bow Wow’s 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides grants for veterinary care for dogs. So far in 2022, the Bow Wow Buddies Foundation has awarded nearly $100,000 to 95 sick and injured dogs in need.
To leverage the company’s in-kind and financial support, through the Service Humans Needed program, Mars has enlisted the support of associates spanning its North American operations, including Mars Petcare, Mars Food, Mars Wrigley, Mars Edge, Mars Veterinary Health and Camp Bow Wow by:
- Encourage 500,000 hours of associate volunteer support at local shelters by fostering, adopting or volunteering through the end of the year.
- Loaned to some of the company’s biggest pet brand social platforms, including PEDIGREE and Camp Bow Wow, to expand awareness of pet and shelter needs.
- Provide ongoing disaster relief support from the Banfield Foundation, PEDIGREE Foundation and VCA Charities.
Holds its biggest ever adoption event in 6 US cities
To further encourage pet advocates to “Volunteer at Home,” Mars Petcare is expanding its 14th annual BEST CITIES FOR PETS Adoption Weekend this year, making it the largest adoption event ever. of the company to date. Mars Petcare, PEDIGREE Foundation, VCA Charities and Camp Bow Wow will cover adoption costs for dogs and cats, up to $110,000, in six of Mars’ hometowns in the United States from Friday, October 21 through Sunday, October 23. october :
- Denver, Colorado (home of Camp Bow Wow)
- Los Angeles, CA (home of VCA Animal Hospitals)
- Nashville, Tennessee (home of Mars Pet Nutrition North America)
- Newark, New Jersey (home of Mars Wrigley North America)
- Vancouver, Washington (home of Banfield Pet Hospital)
- Washington, DC (home of Mars Inc. World Headquarters)
Each adopted pet will go home with a robust starter kit including products such as: PEDIGREE dog food, IAMS cat food, ROYAL CANIN cat food, DENTASTIX dog treats, TEMPTATIONS cat treats, a free coupon for the first Banfield Pet Hospital office visit, plus coupons. and swag from Camp Bow Wow, VCA Animal Hospitals, WISDOM PANEL DNA Test, PEDIGREE Foundation and the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program. Each adopted dog will also walk away with a WHISTLE health tracker with a free 12-month subscription. WHISTLE smart devices use state-of-the-art AI to translate a dog’s behavior into in-depth health insights.
To learn more about how to answer the call through acts of service and volunteerism, click here.