Mars Launches Largest-Ever Animal Shelter Volunteer Program to Address North America’s Urgent Shelter Crisis
‘Service Humans Needed’ asks people to donate their time, homes and social platforms to help shelters and pets in need
FRANKLIN, Tenn., October 18, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Mars Petcare, a proud part of the Mars family of brands, announced that it is putting its strength and scale as the world’s largest pet care company behind the launched its largest shelter volunteer program. Supporting Mars Petcare’s ambition to end pet homelessness, the program – Service Humans Needed – enlists the help of more than 60,000 Mars Associates and pet advocates across the United States. United and Canada to return the support our pets show us by offering voluntary acts of service to help shelters and animals in need.
Additional photos and a B-Roll can be downloaded here.
On the other side North Americashelters are on course to have the worst rates of overcrowding and resource constraints in at least three years1with over 250,000 dogs and cats in shelters across the United States2 and 80,000 across Canada3 who need our 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, Global Director of Pet Shelters and Adoption, Mars Petcare. “The teams at Shelter work tirelessly to help pets in need. We are thrilled that by uniting Associates 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 through our Mars business to step up and support shelters and pets in need,” said Jam Stewart, Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Mars Petcare. , company, protection and much 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 donated over $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 Program Grant program distribute $100,000 in grants to shelters through 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 meet the need for veterinary care, transportation to shelters and 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 enlisted the support of Associates covering its North America companies including Mars Petcare, Mars Food, March Wrigley, Edge of MarsMars 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 14e BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ Annual Adoption Weekend this year, making it the company’s largest adoption event to date. Mars Petcare, PEDIGREE Foundation, VCA Charities and Camp Bow Wow will cover adoption costs for dogs and cats, up to $110,000in six of Mars’ hometowns in the United States from friday 21 october through Sunday October 23:
- Denver, CO (home of Camp Bow Wow)
- Los Angeles, CA (home of the VCA veterinary hospitals)
- Nashville, TN (home of Mars Pet Nutrition North America)
- Newark, New Jersey (House of Mars Wrigley North America)
- Vancouver, WA (home of Banfield Pet Hospital)
- washington d.c. (home of Mars Inc. World Headquarters)
Each adopted pet will go home with a sturdy starter kit including products like: PEDIGREE® dog food, IAMS™ cat food, ROYAL CANIN® cat food, DENTASTIX™ dog treats, cat treats TEMPTATIONS™, a free coupon for the first visit to the Banfield Pet Hospital® office, plus coupons and giveaways from Camp Bow Wow®, VCA Animal Hospitals, WISDOM PANEL™ DNA Testing, PEDIGREE Foundation and the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program ™. Each adopted dog will also go home 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, supporters can visit BetterCitiesforPets.com/ServiceHumans. For more details on Adoption Weekend, please visit BetterCitiesForPets.com/Adopt2022.
ABOUT MARS, INCORPORATED
Mars, Incorporated is driven by the belief that the world we want tomorrow starts with the way we do business today. As a global family business, Mars transforms, innovates and evolves to have a positive impact on the world. Across our diverse and expanding portfolio of quality confectionery, food and pet care products and services, we employ more than 140,000 dedicated associates. With almost $45 billion in annual sales, we produce some of the world’s most beloved brands including Ben’s Original™, CESAR®, Cocoavia®, DOVE®, EXTRA®, KIND®, M&M’s®, SNICKERS®, PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN® and WHISKAS® . We’re creating a better world for pets through our global network of pet hospitals and diagnostic services – including AniCura, BANFIELD™, BLUEPEARL™, Linnaeus and VCA™ – using cutting-edge technology to develop breakthrough programs in genetic health screening and DNA testing. For more information about Mars, please visit www.mars.com. Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube.
About Mars Petcare
Part of Mars, Incorporated, a family business with more than a century of history, manufacturing a variety of products and providing services for the people and pets people love, the 85,000 associates in more than 50 countries Mars Petcare are dedicated to one goal: A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS. With 85 years of experience, our portfolio of nearly 50 brands meets the health and nutrition needs of pets around the world – including PEDIGREE brands®WHISKAS®, ROYAL CANIN®NUTRO™, GREENIES™, SHEBA®CAESAR®,
IAMS™ and EUKANUBA™ as well as the Waltham Petcare Institute of Science which has been advancing research in the field of companion animal nutrition and health for more than 50 years. Mars Petcare is also a leading veterinary health provider with an international network of more than 2,000 pet hospitals and diagnostic services, including BANFIELD™, PEARL BLUE™, VCA™, Linnaeus,
Ani Cura and Antech. We are also active in innovation and technology for companion animals, with WISDOM PANEL™ genetic health screening and DNA testing for dogs and cats, WHISTLE™ GPS tracker for dogs and acceleration LEAP VENTURE STUDIO and COMPANION FUND that drive innovation and disruption in the pet care industry. We’re also committed to providing a safe and fun place for dogs to stay and socialize at over 200 Bow Wow Camps.® nurseries and boarding houses for dogs. As a family business and guided by our principles, we are privileged to be able to fight for what we believe in – and we choose to fight for: A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS.
1 Report on the number of animals in shelters, January – June 2022
2 Share the care
3 Human Canada