The Ad Council, in partnership with The Humane Society of the United States and Maddie’s Fund, yesterday announced the launch of a second series of public service advertisements (PSAs) for The Shelter Pet Project, a campaign that has helped change the landscape of shelter pet adoption and reduce the euthanasia of shelter pets by 10 percent since its launch in 2009.
Despite a bleak economy, the percentage of pets in homes that were adopted from animal shelters and rescue groups has risen from 27 percent to 29 percent in the last two years, with the number of healthy and treatable pets losing their lives for lack of a home dropping from 3 million to 2.7 million.
Bringing that number all the way to zero is the goal of the campaign, which marks the first time in its history the Ad Council has taken on an animal welfare cause. The Shelter Pet Project is also the first national PSA campaign that brings together the largest animal welfare organizations and shelters across the country to reach that goal.
The new television, radio, print, outdoor and Web ads, created pro bono by Draftfcb Chicago, focus on the relationship between shelter pets and their owners by featuring pets observing their human’s quirky yet loveable behaviors, concluding with the message that, “A person is the best thing to happen to a shelter pet.” All of the ads direct prospective pet owners to a comprehensive website, www.theshelterpetproject.org, where users are able to search for a pet from a local shelter or rescue group, read adoption success stories and learn valuable information about pet adoption.
“Choosing to adopt is game-changing for you and life-saving for an animal,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “Pets end up in shelters through no fault of their own – they are often victims of circumstance. If enough people in our nation choose adoption, we can eliminate the euthanasia of healthy and treatable pets in our country.”
“We are expecting our new campaign PSAs to connect with the 17 million people who are going to get a pet this year and convince at least 2.7 million of them to adopt from a shelter or rescue,” said Maddie’s Fund President Rich Avanzino. “We are hopeful that the new ads will also inspire the 14 million animal lovers who have already adopted to tell their friends why shelters are the first and best places to go for a new four-legged family member.”
The Ad Council is distributing the new PSAs to more than 33,000 media outlets nationwide this week.
“In just two years, the number of pets euthanized has decreased by 10 percent, however there are still millions of healthy pets that need a loving home,” said Peggy Conlon, President and CEO, The Advertising Council. “This campaign entertains audiences while bringing an important message, the need to adopt pets from shelters, to the forefront.”
“We are thrilled to be launching the second phase of an already impactful partnership with the Ad Council and its sponsors,” said Nick Paul, EVP, Global Chief Growth Officer, Draftfcb. “This is a tremendous cause and we hope that the energy and positivity behind the new work will reflect the joy that comes from bringing a pet in need into a loving home. We are confident that the optimism of our message will resonate with the millions of potential adopters that are still out there and bring us even closer to our goal.”